Drawing a Line in the Sand
As my husband, Keith, and I came back to the Lord after the birth of our daughter, our walks were very much our own: our own pace, our own style, and our own story. As is pretty typical, I seemed to run ahead, probably because I was so desperate and in need of some serious sanity as I suffered from post-partum depression.
Keith was slower. Carrying the burden of providing for his expanding family, the stresses of life weighed him down. As much as I was growing in the Lord, I did little to lift the burden off of him. I was consumed with little people, little (or rather large) messes, and all things baby.
Plus, I was up and down and very unstable at the time, so he never knew what he was coming home to: a crying mess, a raging lunatic, or a cold stare. God had given me a passion for His word.
I loved it. I devoured it. I couldn’t get enough of it. Slowly over time, I changed. Along with medicine, God’s word revealed some deep issues I had to deal with and with the help of the Holy Spirit, I did.
Keith continued to work. And I started to become a bit impatient with my husband and his lack of holy transformation. I mean, look at me! Why can’t he change like me? And, the nagging started…I mean, it had always been there. The sarcastic comments, the digs, the words that cut and hurt, but nagging became my language. Come on! What is the problem? Look at this amazing wife you have? Why can’t you figure it out?
Am I the only one that has thought like this? Oh Lord, forgive me! As I buried my nose in the Word and self-righteously lifted my husband in prayer, I came across a verse that hit me hard. Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and nagging wife. Proverbs 21: 19
Oh….boy…ouch! Here I was thinking oh so highly of myself and proudly lifting my husband in prayer, so the Lord could change him, while I was the one who needed changing.
It is in this place that I drew my line in the sand. I would not nag my husband anymore. With God’s grace and His word, I stepped out in faith to watch what God could do when I got out of the way! Because, honestly, that is what nagging is…it is a wall that kept my husband from hearing the Lord. All he could hear, was my awful words, voice, and tone.
After time, Keith changed. One night, after spending time in his music studio, he came in very upset. “You’re praying for me, aren’t you?” Ummm, yes…of course. That is what I had started to do…every time I wanted to nag, I prayed. It worked!
God honored my faith and reliance on Him. When we lift those we love in humble prayer, God works mightily! So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do. Then the name of our Lord Jesus will be honored because of the way you live, and you will be honored along with him. This is all made possible because of the grace of our God and Lord, Jesus Christ. 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12
By replacing nagging with prayer, my trust in God’s power and faithfulness grew. Free from nagging and quarreling, Keith was able to experience the Lord’s work in him, and he was able to respond and grow. Keith’s trust in God grew as he saw changes in himself.
Do you struggle with nagging? Maybe it isn’t your husband you nag, but your children. Let go of the temptation to nag. Trust the Lord to change your loved ones and yourself!