My wife put in an unusually long day working away from home. Arriving home from an eleven hour day she asked, “Are you upset with me for being gone so long?” Uh Oh. If I said, “No,” I risked communicating that I was fine with her absence. Not a good thing! If I said, “Yes,” I would have been asserting my residual chauvinistic bias inherited from cavemen. I would have been interfering with her autonomy as a woman of the twenty-first century. There was no way I was going to win this one. Where was Solomon when I needed him?
Negotiating one’s way through life is fraught with relational pitfalls. Harmony is often maintained by compromise and artful responses. I had nothing. Instantly I thought of James 1:5. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” So in a millisecond I asked. We don’t have to explain the details of our dilemmas to God when we pray. He’s been watching. He already knows. “Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.” Isaiah 65:24. It is refreshing to know we are not alone when catastrophe looms. In the last verse of Matthew 24 Jesus promised, “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Without pause the following flowed from my lips. “The dog and I really missed you. We miss you no matter how long you are gone.” Phew. Armageddon was diverted. However, I do wonder. Was that a smug look on her face as she went upstairs?
Written by Roger Bothwell on May 12, 2016
PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574