December 10, 2010

The One with the Eve Syndrome

Yesterday I picked up a copy of Shaunti Feldhahn's For Women Only from our library. This book is kicking my tush. With the subtitle what you need to know about the inner lives of men, having heard Shaunti speak on a Focus broadcast, and getting recommendations all over the Christian arena (including one of my good friends), I figured it was worth my time. I'm so glad and so mad to be reading this book. Glad because I truly believe it will change my life--our lives. And mad because changing is really painful.

Shaunti interviewed over one thousand men on every topic dealing with relationships with the women in the lives. (To read the men's responses and to check out tons of other resources check Her findings shocked her AND the men. It seems everyone "knows" the differences between the two genders, but no one really understands how that works out in every day life.  

My husband thought it'd be a good idea to just read the book aloud together. He knows me well, because, inevitably I'll laugh out loud or respond in some way and then proceed to reread the section to him. Why not save time, right? I'm totally ok with sharing this experience. It's turned out to be even more beneficial. Last night, as we lay in bed, I finished reading chapter two--"Your Love is NOT Enough." After each section I asked for Kevin's feedback. It was so great to hear his responses, to see the sheer glee in his smile as he thought, "She is finally going to understand what I've been trying to tell her for years." And I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty excited about it, too. 

But it's not easy. As I read each sentence, I feel like I've been punched in the kidneys. Ouch. Shaunti describes situations that resonate deeply with both of us--times when I've reacted in such a way that screams "I don't trust you!" or "I think you're incapable!" I don't necessarily mean for those awful statements to be shot straight to my husband's surprising fragile heart, but that's the truth of the matter. Page after page is like that. I read another scenario and I realize that's exactly what I just did and it made him feel like that. My heart breaks over the pain I have caused and the wounds I have inflicted on my husband--the husband who loves me unconditionally, just as I need him to. So why do I have the right to decide when he deserves my respect? 

I'm so sorry, Kevin. I know I've expressed this dozens of times since last night, but I'm still sorry. I hate the nature of sin within me that screams for control, stripping you of the respect I am called to give you. Regardless of whether you deserve my respect for whatever you've done in that moment, the fact that you're my husband is reason enough. I beg you for patience as I learn the workings of your mind and your heart. Continue to help me along, as you have been all this time. I'll get it eventually. With Jesus, I know I will. I love you. 

I respect you. I trust you. I'm so proud of you.

This post linked up with The Candid Pastor's Wife "Wedded Wednesday."

1 comment:

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts. If you want share directly with us, feel free to email