Recently Jim and I were in the grocery store and I was wearing a t-shirt that ways “I Love My Husband” and the girl at the checkout counter asked the super typical question of “did he make you wear that?”. Can I just tell y’all that if I had even a penny for every time I hear that I would be well on my way to paying off a week long cruise. It’s that often.
No, he didn’t make me wear it. In fact, the odds are pretty high that he didn’t even know what shirt I was wearing or if I was even wearing a shirt. Jim isn’t exactly known for being observant.
I told her that when your marriage has gone through all that we’ve put ours through you wear your I love my spouse t-shirts, tell your story, and pray someone, anyone, learns from your mistakes.
If this tee bought at a marriage event strikes up a conversation about loving your spouse well then the $20 was worth it. If our hard story causes someone to pause and consider their own marriage then the divorce was worth it.
No, I would not want to go back there. But yes, I do see the value in those years. Wisdom comes when we are experiencing life, not when we wait for life to experience us. Nothing gets better because we sat and consider things, we are meant to experience life and then tell others about it. Even the hard stuff. I would say especially the hard stuff.
In the Parable of the Three Servants (Matthew 25:14-30 GW) Jesus is comparing these three dudes that are given thousands of dollars by their master, right? The master was careful to give each servant what his ability would be able to handle so one was given 10 thousand dollars, the next 4 thousand dollars, and the last 2 thousand dollars. The first two invested and doubled their money. The last hid his money in the sand and came back with the same amount, nothing gained or lost.
Well, what if we consider the money in a different way? What if we call the money our stories. God gives us each a life to live with plenty of lessons and circumstances. So the same three people are given a story the first goes out into the world and shares it far and wide…loud and God glorifying. The second also shares his story but on a smaller stage amongst those they know and love, still God glorifying. The third though never shared his story. My question is what if his story was the one that would have helped another person? What if him saying “You know, I really struggle with addiction.” or “I constantly fight the urge to look at porn.” or “I carry this shame from my divorce” or “I cheated my way to to the top and wish I had known the truth of what it would do to me a long time ago.”
When we bury our story and don’t trust others with it we are limiting the power God gave us to help each other. To point straight to Him and say “it was hard but to God be the glory.”
Lets not bury our testimonies but instead lets wear the t-shirts, say some hard stuff, and point the victories back to Him.