Confession from the Coastal Living Show House 2012

Posted by on Aug 8, 2012 in Blog Posts | 9 comments

My words can build a wall or keep one from ever forming. photo. 

As a wife, my responses to Rob’s words have great power.  They raise a wall between us or they prevent one from ever forming.  They build him up or they tear him down.

We toured the Coastal Living Show House 2012  while on vacation last week.

I enjoy touring design homes with Rob because of the ideas we get. I have been known to leave one of these extravagant houses in a bad mood jealous of the newness, the furnishings, the grounds, the touted energy efficiency, and that extravagance. 

I bet I am not alone in that coveting behavior which is older than the dirt houses are built on.

But that behavior is not my confession.  I promise I was not even exhibiting those behaviors this time. 

After I had snapped up a bunch of pictures and secured a brochure, Rob and I were walking out to our car holding hands when he unloaded an unexpected statement.

Here’s what he said very calmly, sincerely, and without sarcasm, looking me straight in the eyes.

“I bet you wish you had married somebody who could give you a 2.7 million dollar house.”
Ugh.  Ouch.  Really?  I’m just a girl standing here looking at her guy asking him to turn on the AC.
Imagine a cement truck spinning its fresh mix, backing up to the 12″ space between our feet, and lowering the delivery canal to unload a ton of wet cement at that very spot.  
The power of words comes in here because my response was going to permit the cement to spill out or it was going to raise the canal back up preventing a wall from forming between us.
Thankfully my spirit, the Holy Spirit and Rob’s spirit were in sync so I knew his statement was not a directed slam at me but a reflection of something with which he was dealing. My flesh had no opportunity to be offended so my response was one that would cement our relationship in goodness and grace.  
“I’m happiest married to you and so thankful for how you provide for me and our family.” 
{Cue the cement mixer to take its load elsewhere!  Score a big one for the wife!}
Yes, I know God provides ultimately, but in that moment, my husband needed the respectful spoken reassurance that he is doing a good thing for his family and I am thankful.
I needed to speak words to Rob that build him up, not tear him and our relationship down.
I got it right in that moment.
I don’t always get it right.  Just this morning I messed up and had to chip away at some concrete.
What about you?  Do you struggle from time to time with a mouth that erects walls between you and your husband or you and others?
Sure, we cannot take back the words we say any more than a cement truck can scoop back wet cement that solidifies.  But, we can use our mouths to speak genuine sorrow over the hurt we have caused another.  By doing so, the wall that separates us from the other begins to crumble under  forgiveness bestowed and grace experienced.
We learn from the sin, and hopefully don’t repeat it, thus giving the cement truck the sign to just move on to more constructive places and not contribute its load to the relationship.
God addresses this very thing in Ephesians 4:29 (ESV) – 
“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.”
In my cement mixer paraphrase…
Don’t unload the fresh cement of ungracious words onto others that will cause hearts to harden.  Use cement for building good things that refresh others.
Speak words that build up another.
Opportunity for Response:
What did you learn from today’s post?

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  1. Love this post Amy! And so beautifully written! (it’s really gonna “stick” in my brain!)
    And your husband’s humility and his confidence in you to allow you to share this here is admirable. Thank you both for sharing and reminding us of the power of our words and responses. Reminds me of this verse:
    Proverbs 4:1
    The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.

    • Thank you Sharon! That additional verse from Proverbs is just perfect. There are so many that address this issue aren’t there? I think about James, too, and the power of the tongue.

      Hugging you back from Panera, eating my breakfast at a table for two. : )

  2. Wow, what a statement Amy. I appreciate your response to Rob. Honest and exactly what he needed from you! Love you and thank you for your words of wisdom! Patsy

    • Aw Patsy, thank you for that encouragement. I know you get that whole construction analogy! : ) I’m so glad I got it right that time. Whew!

  3. This is so good, Amy! Our men need words of affirmation! Glad your vacation taught you MANY things!

    • Thank you Kelli! Our men do need those respectful and affirming words. They are nourishment to the soul of a man. Vacation was good and now I’m trying to get in my back-at-home-it’s-end-of-summer mode. Eeek!

  4. Sister, someONE I am getting to know especially appreciates words of affirmation (and quality time)!! Love you!

    • Uhm hmm! I am delighted you have opportunities to give those affirming words and quality time! Soli Deo Gloria!

    • and I love you too!

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