June 08, 2009

We're a Team

I was thinking about something yesterday, and I'd thought I'd write about it, since that's usually what I do.

(By the way, for those of you who left comments on the previous post (Mom, Gloria, and Linda), thank you. I literally laughed so hard I cried.)

I was thinking about Matt and I, and our marriage. And about what a team we truly are. And how blessed I am to be married to someone that's such a team player.

We do not have assigned "roles" in our family. Let me clarify that in case you may misunderstand what I'm saying. Matt is the protector and initiator of well-being in our family. Much of the responsibility of our provisions and decisions rest on him.

But he does not lord over me. He is not the boss of me, so to speak. He doesn't wield his leadership like a club and command me to follow him and fall in line. I once heard a marriage expert and counselor say that if Christian men have that attitude, they've completely missed the spirit of humble leadership that Christ has given to the husband in the Bible.

We are a team. We make decisions together. Matt consults with me over every decision, and vice versa. We don't make monumental decisions without the other's consent. Sure, there are things like cars and repairs and maintenance that I'm not good at nor am I remotely interested in it. Matt takes complete care of it, and neither of us feel any need to involve me in that process.

I don't do the cooking and cleaning because I'm the wife. And he doesn't work all day and then come home and demand dinner because he's the husband. We do what we're good at when we can. We both cook. We both clean. We both shop for groceries. When Matt's in school, I do most of the cooking and cleaning because he can't and I can. Does that bother me? Absolutely not. Because we're a team, and teams work together.

We're not split down the middle. You do this half, and I do this half. No, we both contribute fully to the well-being of our marriage and home, which means there may be times when one is picking up the other's slack. We do it unbegrudgingly.

And as we are married for longer and longer, we learn that one or the other is better at certain things and that becomes more our own domain. Such as laundry. I do laundry most of the time, because I'm a good multi-tasker and it's easy to fit it into whatever else I may be doing.

Cooking. I do cook, but Matt enjoys it more and when he's not in school, he does most of it.

Now, that I'm in the beginning months of pregnancy, I find myself exhausted constantly. Matt has multiple times in the last week cooked dinner and cleaned up. I am so thankful for that. I am so thankful that he doesn't lord over me, and demand to be served as the leader of our home.

And that has a reciprocal effect. He doesn't have to demand respect or a trusting attitude from me, as he leads us into oftentimes unfamiliar territory. He has it completely. I've seen day in and day out that he is trustworthy and humble, willing to serve and sacrifice, diligent and respectable. So when the unknown comes, and the responsibility rests on him to make a final decision, I trust and follow what he decides.

Not that we're perfect in this process. And not to say there haven't been times when my stubborn independence hasn't creeped in wanting my way. But he makes it easier to submit and trust him.

We can't decide what we will or won't do because of "roles." If so, we've completely missed the spirit of humility that is written all throughout Scripture. We've gotta be a team in our marriages, or we may be fostering a perfect environment for resentment. Christ came not to be served, but to serve, and He's told us to be like Him. This starts in our marriages.

3 comments:

  1. You couldn't of articulated this any better. I just love to read you writing. You have a true gift. Our marriages are deeply important and sometimes get overlooked in the hustle and bustle of life. I love the great display of a true marriage that you and Matt have. God is center. We have such wonderful, understanding and patient husbands. There are times I know that Chris could pull his hair out with my emotional and irrational reactions. I pray that I am as good of a wife as Chris is a husband. I love him madly!

    Gloria

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  2. Gloria---I think we read this at exactly the same time! Sara----that was again awesome. I really think you need to write a book---besides writers love to travel---go figure!

    I have learned many things over the years and the most memorable is that you have to be married and like to play together! Kim and I have many of the same interests and it makes it so easy! Tennis is so fun--especially when we both enjoy it. Now that doesnt mean I always like playing on the same court with him-----but it feels good to have him watch me and give me pointers and cheer me on. I do the same for him and its fun.

    As for household duties-----we never really decided who would do what---it just happened and it works. He always makes the bed and vaccums----he didnt even know I didnt like to do it. He never expects dinner---but is always appreciative and never complains about going out to eat. (Wait a minute---maybe there is a message there)

    It works because we are both grounded in Christ and have a true respect for each other. Having a marriage built on a rock is terrific. It really doesnt matter what hardships come along---I have complete peace that he will always support me. That is huge.

    I cant imagine my life without him and only wish we would have met years ago. I am sure God had his timing just right. We were both ready to settle at the same time.

    Roles are not part of our relationship----eventhough I hate picking up Buddys you know what----I do---just because I do.

    I have learned over the years that its really not about lifes little ups and downs---but more about how you handle your attitude towards what is really important and what is worth letting go.

    Life is good--Mom

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  3. Very well said Sara, and mom!

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