It is disconcerting to be vulnerable on the “interweb.” I am about to share my marital woes with millions of my closest friends. Here goes anyway…
I’ve been thinking a lot about idolatry and my own life. I have a lot of idols (e.g., sports, dreams, job, popularity, friends, etc.). The most dangerous idol I have recently discovered is the one God has called me to love more than myself — my wife.
In my haste to love and adore my wife (which I most certainly do), I have put a lot of expectations on her. I noticed recently that I started to get very terse with my wife when she let me down in even the smallest ways. Their are a myriad of reasons why this is the wrong way to act (e.g., she is the most talented and loving person I know, I act like a jerk way more than she does, she demonstrates sacrifice toward me every day, etc.).
Here is one way that Donald Miller explained it recently:
I realized that for years I’d thought of love as something that would complete me, make all my troubles go away. I worshiped at the alter of romantic completion. And it had cost me, plenty of times. And it had cost most of the girls I’d dated, too, because I wanted them to be something they couldn’t be. it’s too much pressure to put on a person.
That is so true. Only God can handle the “pressure” of demonstrating perfect love. The application of this sentiment is what hit me the hardest. Here is how Miller finished his thought:
I think that’s why so many couples fight, because they want their partners to validate them and affirm them, and if they don’t get that, they feel as though they’re going to die. And so they lash out. But it’s a terrible thing to wake up and realize the person you just finished crucifying didn’t turn out to be Jesus.