Do you have a habit that affects the whole home? Find out how changing it can change your home.
It all came to light at the kitchen sink.
Starting with a sigh—so natural to me that I never noticed it escaping my lips.
A long, heavy sigh.
I was washing vegetables for the dinner salad. Celery, peppers, and carrots. The typical evening prep.
Feeling behind and burdened by my day.
That’s when my husband walked into the room and asked, “Hey Babe, how was today?” And then, “Why the big sigh?”
He asked, and I answered. And it went something like this . . . .
The bickering kids,
the avalanche of housework,
the half-broken appliances (like that dumb dryer!),
the errands that took far longer than they should have,
the three medical bills that had arrived in the mail.
A long list of complaints, but nothing special. All the usuals.
But right before my eyes, I watched those strong, solid shoulders of the Man I Love . . . drop a little. Hunch over a bit. Heavy with all I’d just dumped on him.
But he’d asked, and I’d answered him honestly.
And I believe it’s important to be honest, don’t you?
Except for one thing.
My “honesty” was taking him down. Taking my whole family down really.
I was literally sucking the life out of our home with my complaining.
I’d developed the very bad habit of grumbling, and I’d masked it all under the disguise of “being honest” instead of calling it what it really was.
What I really was.
The Complaining Wife.
And that’s when I knew that something had to change. I had to stop this negative stream of communication that greeted him most every evening. It was time to trade out my whining discontent and replace it with a thankful spirit. Choose cheerful words rather than negative ones.
I wanted to breathe life back into my home.
Oh, not that it meant I could never be “honest” again because there’s definitely a time and place for that. But I realized that I could save it for another moment. And I was going to make sure that I wasn’t merely “dumping” on him, but truly coming to him for support, help, or a little sympathy. Not complaining for the sake of complaining.
I decided to change my habit. Rather than focusing on all that had gone wrong, I was going to concentrate on all that was good in my day. Things that were true, lovely, and worthy.
And that goes something like this . . . .
The kids had lots of fun at the park today,
got the pantry cleaned out,
so glad for my washing machine and (partially-working) dryer,
made it to the grocery store,
grateful our girl got medical care when she really needed it.
Same day – a different perspective. Which has made all the difference in the world.
So this is why I traded my sigh in for a smile and try to speak words of joy instead.
Changed my habit.
Changed my heart.
And how it changed our home for good.
….whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
~ Philippians 4:8 ~
Maybe you’ve picked up the habit of complaining as well? Try changing this one bad habit and see the good it brings to your husband, yourself, and your home.
Breathe words of life.
In His grace,
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*This is an excerpt from the Marriage Wisdom Devotional for Her—Available HERE
Each Marriage Wisdom book contains 31 short, easy-to-understand readings on topics uniquely suited to a husband or wife – topics that are vital for growing in wisdom and maturity in marriage. Also included are prompts that help you be successful by asking questions that encourage you to wisely apply what you learn.
Marriage Wisdom is for every intentional couple focused on building an amazingly enjoyable, enduring, and beautiful marriage, starting right now.
Lisa is the happily-ever-after wife of Matt Jacobson and together they enjoy raising and home-educating their 8 children in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She encourages women to embrace the rich life of loving relationships and the high calling of being a wife and mother. Lisa is the author of 100 Ways to Love Your Husband and her husband is the author of 100 Ways to Love Your Wife. Matt and Lisa are also the co-hosts of the FAITHFUL LIFE podcast where they talk about what it means to be a biblical Christian in marriage, parenting, church, and culture.