Imagine an artist gifted in painting realism who has an accident in the studio. Paint is splashed all over the canvas ruining the piece as they had planned. But is it ruined or just different? Abstract paintings are as beautiful as realistic ones, but it takes a trained eye to see the beauty in what looks like a mess.
This is how life is for someone who craves control. I know because I am that person. I have lived with a false sense of control for most of my life. When it works life goes well. But when my plan is interrupted or changed altogether I am tempted to despair. I say tempted because in those moments I have a choice to make–give into it or embrace the change.
In the past decade God has been slowly helping me loosen my grip of control over my plans for His plans. Life doesn’t look anything like I thought it would, but it is good–so good!
We need planners in order for things to get done. But we also need those who color outside of the lines so to speak, and dare to venture into the dream of what could be? Having one of each in a marriage can be its greatest asset or greatest demise.
It can be a demise if you,
1. Constantly judge your spouse’s ideas as wrong.
2. Cling to what you want. After all only what you want will satisfy.
3. Pull away from God and/or your spouse because they aren’t giving you what you want.
4. Choose to live in the past of what was and miss the beauty of what is.
It can be an asset if you,
1. Think the best of your spouse and see their opinion as valid.
2. Hold your plans and ideas loosely making room for change.
3. Draw near to God knowing that He sees the big picture our limited view often misses.
4. Choose to embrace what you have today and leave the past and future in God’s hands. He will paint a masterpiece that glorifies Him, not me. And isn’t that our desire?
The key in a healthy marriage is to appreciate the differences you encounter.
Pray about them; Talk about them; Really discuss them to discover how the other thinks. Then make plans using the best of both perspectives. This is what great marriages use to build a strong foundation. But the most important key is submitting your plans to God. Let Him lead you and trust His will in the process. His calling on each of us is most likely more than we could ever hope for or imagine. Do you believe it?
If God created the entire universe, imagine the masterpiece He is painting in your life and marriage. With all its mistakes and failures He is accomplishing His work in you, if you will give Him full creative access.