I was scrolling the other day through Facebook when I saw something that troubled me. I've seen it before and I will probably see it again, but a friend of mine posted about his marriage. It wasn't an ordinary update like "So and So just got married," it was a rant about their spouse and how their marriage sucked.
Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
I know that I'm not innocent when it comes to Facebook rantings and have even posted complaints about my husband when we were dating, but it took one person to tell me how immature and unnecessary it was.
Proverbs 12:4 An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones.
When I was in junior high and high school, my sister used to tell me to quit telling my mom every complaint that came to mind when complaining or telling her about an argument that happened with a friend. After a while, I realized to stop because after every complaint or rant, I would be forbidden to see my friends for a while. It was only after explaining that my long winded rants and complaints were amplified and not nearly as terrible as they seemed and time and groveling was I able to hang out with them again.
Philippians 2:3 Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.
It also happened the other way around too. I was always a flirty, fun, and talkative girl. I had many boyfriends in jr. high and many admirers as well. (Boast much?) After a while, I was called a hoochie mama (except with worse names) even though the worst I ever did with those boyfriends and crushes was maybe slow dance at a dance. I never even held hands with or kissed any of them. In a Jr. High relationship we sat next to each in class and had chaste phone calls on our landlines. After I found out that my 9th grade boyfriend kissed another girl in his town, I stopped dating. It was around that time that my youth group made a pact to date someone when God told us to. I found that someone my freshman year in college and married the poor sucker!
Me and my future husband
It was only after I grew up and got married that my other mothers realized that I was an ok kid and not who they thought. However, it stung to know they thought that way.
Matthew 6:14-15 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Us married in 2008
I belong on a couple of work out and dieting sites on Facebook. From time to time I see some of the posts that these women write pertaining to their husbands. For example: One woman wrote about how her husband asked her to stop buying her favorite snacks because he was having a difficult time not eating them and he was trying to eat better. The women who responded were hateful and the wife's responses went along with them. Another time, I was reading about how a woman's husband was telling her that her form wasn't correct and that she could do so much better if she listened to him. Again, the husband bashing began.
Ephesians 3:31-32 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ God forgave you.
We don't know these husbands or how they truly are. They probably had good intentions. I'm the husband in the first story. I have little will power when it comes to eating snacks. Since I buy most of the food in the house, I buy foods for my kids that they like, but I don't. If I buy something for my husband, I know that he'll take it to work if he likes it. I know that if that food is at home, I'm going to probably end up eating it. I don't see a problem with her husband asking her to not bring that food home or to at least hide it. What is wrong with that?
Matthew 7:12 So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.
I have been so lucky with my husband. He has never criticized me or told me that I need to lose weight in the 9 years that we've been married or the 3 years before then when I was skinnier. The few times that we have had the opportunity to go to the gym together, I've never been mad at my husband for giving me advice. I know that he has had more experience with lifting than I do and I welcome it, mostly... Maybe not so much when he tells me to push through the pain... For the husband in the example above, I believe that he had good intentions. The Facebook page is catered to women who want to lose weight and also build muscle. A lot of them are actually body builders. You'd think that if the advice from the women on those pages are valued, that the husband's opinions might also be valued, too.
Philippians 2:2 Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and one of mind.
When you post bad things about your spouse or significant other, it causes other people to see them that way. You may be angry at a misunderstanding or you two don't see eye to eye, but it doesn't matter. You shouldn't start blabbing about your disagreements. Chances are, you're over exaggerating and omitting the things that you did and said and how it got to that point. You can't undo that knowledge. Do you really want someone thinking poorly of them?
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
When I was growing up, I grew up with sisters. We weren't always nice to each other and I would vocalize it to my friends. However, if my friends tried to say the same thing, they better watch themselves. You see, they might have been tattletales and goody-two-shoes, but they were my sisters. If you said anything bad about them, you would find yourself under my wrath. They're buttheads, but they're my buttheads and only I can be mean to them. It's should be the same sentimentality to your spouse or all loved ones. Keep quiet about their little discretions.
Me and my buttheads
If you got this far and you think, "So what if my friends and family think that my spouse or significant other is a jerk?" and you claim that you love them, remember this.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
If you really are married to a jerk who is an abusive person and you need help, don't post these things on Facebook or blab to anyone who get it back to them, it can actually make your relationship worse. Instead, find someone who can help you safely get out of that relationship like your pastor, a parent, the police, or a counselor like someone from the YWCA.
Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand