Friday, November 1, 2013

Good Enough IS Good Enough


Place yourselves under each other’s authority out of respect for Christ.
~ Ephesians 5:21, GW ~

I almost did it.  I almost stepped into a situation where I should have really faded into the background.  Thankfully, I caught myself, and reined myself in before I really blew it.

You see, I struggle with a pervasive problem so many of us mothers face -- relinquishing control to our spouse.  Our son was scheduled to go to one of his appointments with his amazing psychologist.  Over the past year, my husband has maybe been at 1 or even 2 appointments to meet this specialist.  I, on the other hand, have faithfully delivered my son, consulted with the doctor, and patiently waited during my son's appointments no less than 26 out of the past 52 weeks.  This week my husband happened to be available at my son's appointment time, so he volunteered to take him.  I was on board with the idea until something went wrong.  Our son began getting overly anxious about twice being unsuccessful in his attempts to administer his own IV.  I don't know why, but I suddenly thought that I needed to speak to this psychologist and explain what was going on rather than my husband.

We wives can be so foolish this way, can't we?  How often we complain that we would like more help from our husbands with the children or around the house, then we reject or criticize it once it is offered!  I know so many mothers who are buckling under the heavy weight of managing all of their child's medical care, in addition to the regular responsibilities of child-rearing.  And this is largely due to the fact that they will not trust their husband with the medical responsibilities.  On the other hand, there are husbands who have stopped offering to help because their wives are so quick to point out that they are "not doing it right."

While it may sound overly simplistic, following God's mandate from Ephesians 5:1 is the remedy to this parenting challenge.  When we mothers are willing to yield to our husbands, to allow them to make mistakes or create new, different methods from ours, life becomes better.  Exerting self-control rather than being a control freak can end up richly rewarding us.  It brings us some relief in the form of help from our spouse.  There is more peace in our family, with our stress level brought down a notch.  And at the same time, this activity brings Christ the glory that He is due.

I have written and spoken many times before about taking the approach that "Good enough is good enough."  What this means is that my spouse may not do everything the same way I do, but certainly no one has died over the matter.  So my daughter ended up with my son's t-shirt in her drawer...  At least my husband was kind enough to help put the laundry away.  And most of that laundry ends up in the correct place.  My husband and son have also devised some different methods to the infusion process.  I personally hate their method, but if it works, who cares?

This also means that when my kids complain that Dad doesn't do things the exact same way I do, I respectfully explain to them that God did not make Dad the Mom.  He is wired differently.  He has different approaches to things.  And that is not necessarily bad.  I explain that they are fortunate to have a father who cares about them, and that they need to show him mercy.

I didn't go to the psychologist with my son this week.  I apologized to my husband for implying that I should go rather than he, and then I stepped out of the way.  We discussed our son's issues before the appointment, and it went just fine.  The two of them had some nice "man village" time together, and they walked in the door all smiles.  That's what it looks like when I do things God's way instead of my own.

PRAY:  Father, it is so frightening to let go.  Too often I anticipate the worst.  Yet, You did not give me a spirit of fear, but rather a spirit of power, love and self-control.  Holy Spirit, exercise that self-control in me when I have a hard time yielding to my spouse.  I know your way leads to plenty, while my way leads to poverty.  Thank You for your mercy and grace to grow through my imperfections.


3 comments:

  1. Barb, Good enough is good enough--love that motto and thanks so much for sharing your heart!

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  2. Women need love. Men need respect. Good post.

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  3. I have so been there- this resonated with my soul. Thank you for reminding me to not getting in the way of my husband's relationship with my son during times like these.

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