I had someone recently indicate they thought I had a perfect life. I nodded and smiled and secretly thought to myself...
You Have No Idea. I snort at your ridiculousness.
Life is messy. We usually show only the fun, glamorous, or romantic parts in public. We don't talk about the scary, ugly parts because we want everyone to believe we are fine, fine.
I had the fleeting thought that maybe it's disingenuous to only show the pretty side of things in public. As if.
Six months ago I wrote a blog about my husband and what romantic really should mean vs. what it's become in our culture. What I didn't write is that we've struggled as a couple. We've struggled to remain faithful. We've struggled to agree. We've struggled not to give up and move on. We've fought over child rearing, in-laws, living arrangements, people at work, people at church, intrusions on our marriage, how to cook, how to fold laundry, how to clean a bathroom. We've said hurtful things, done hurtful things, thought hateful things, fought in front of the kids, and been difficult on purpose.
But we stayed even when it was ugly and uncomfortable.
Commitment is the gap between feelings and actions. You have to remain committed even when it's difficult. That's the hard part, because it's a decision NOT based on EMOTIONS but on commitment and promise.
See, every time I think it's enough already, I remember how it felt when my adult parents divorced and I say, "Nope. Get back on the roller coaster, strap yourself in, and keep riding. We ARE NOT going to do that to our children."
I also recall that when I stood on that altar and promised, I made vows to God not just to The Husband. I promised, and I want my word to be the truth. Once you remember your vow and promise, with time and patience the feelings you had in the beginning CAN return and it's not commitment anymore; it's love again.
It's a roller coaster of love for sure and there are as many bad days as good days. Maybe more.
The weird thing that no one tells you is that it's the BORING, AVERAGE days that are the most dangerous days. You begin believing the lie that you need more, deserve more, want more than you have, and you become discontent with the things you have been blessed with. (Hey, Eve to you.) It's the first lie Satan told--you deserve more than you have and God surely wants you to be happy. WRONG: God wants your commitment and obedience.
Everyone has the capacity of good and evil inside him. It boils down
to this: making your life look like a fairytale on the outside is
normal. We want people to see the best in us. But it's also normal for
you to have all of those other things under your surface, swimming just
out of reach. They shouldn't be shameful. They should be faced head on.
They have to be dealt with and in a timely manner, because that's the
nature of evil. If you let it take root in you, it will become you. Like
kudzu. It will overtake anything in its path if given time and room to
grow. You have to root it out daily.
I want my
children to feed that good side and weed out the bad parts, just like
they do on social media when they present the good parts. I want them to do it until it becomes their
reality and is their truth.
So, I fully intend to keep on posting
nothing but the glamorous parts of my life on social media, making fun of the stupid/crazy/silly/awful parts, because I want those to be the truthful
parts. The real parts. I want the other things to be rooted up and out
and not fed in any way. And that's why my fairy tale IS a fairy tale.
Because I choose daily to continue:
*rooting out evil and feeding the good parts
my commitments ever before me
*recalling the promises God made me and
I've made others
*and remembering to forgive and get back on the ride.