Me: “Do you really want to let the bicycle trailer to stay out in the weather all summer? What about putting it in the shed?” He’d lifted the fabric-covered carrier off it’s hooks inside the back door and locked it to the outside of the screened porch.
Jerry: “There might be room, but the shed is behind the Kousa Dogwood tree. It’s hard to get it in and out back there.”
Me: “What about the garage? We could hang it above my bike.”
Him: “You’re not the one who has to lift it down.”
Me: “Oh. But in three years, I am the one who’ll have to replace the the sun-damaged fabric.”
Uh, do we love each other? Absolutely. Well, sort of absolutely, except where we love ourselves better. Like when I want to save the fabric but don’t mind him having to struggle with the carrier. And when he doesn’t want to hassle with hanging the carrier but doesn’t mind my challenge to sew and install new material.
You can hear the discussion of this morning’s conflict. What you don’t hear in this exchange is the laughter. What you don’t see is, as we uncovered the deeper issues, we were snuggling with each other. So, yeah, love does have something to do with it.
It’s love made of commitment and prayer that has brought us here to this place of conflict resolution backgrounded with laughter and hugs. God’s commitment, our prayers.
Here’s three I’ve often prayed. “Lord, help me understand why “X” hurts him so much.” “Help him understand how “Y” hurts me so much.” And my favorite, all-purpose, marital prayer in the midst of conflict: “Lord, soften our hearts toward each other.”
Lord Jesus, thank you for your love for us and the love you’ve given us for each other. Lord, soften all our hearts toward each other, especially men and women who have pledged their lives to each other and to you.