I glimpse the mess again as I glance through the window.
How the pole had just come crashing down moments after we’d hung all the clothes. Dry rot sent the whole mess tumbling down.
Julia and I, we had talked long about dry rot when she was here.
We had used a different name: bitterness.
About how the bitterness seizes you and grows silently within. And then the hollowness, the lack of affection, the truth-less thoughts suddenly take you all by surprise.
And a marriage can tumble down when just one more thing happens, like that last wet and heavy dress hung there on the line. (<– Click to Tweet) That hollow dry rotting core brings the whole thing down. Everything just snapping.
The wisest of women builds her own house, but folly with her own hands tears it down. Proverbs 14:1
I don’t pretend to know how to build my own house: my marriage and my children. I’m good at snapping. At watching everything fall there on the ground, dirty and half wet. I know how to tear a house down and I can do that naturally and immediately.
But I have learned one thing from that fallen clothesline:
It’s the cross that keeps standing. The cross that everything hangs on. If I can just cling to the cross and train for His calling, then I can learn to build my own house.
Construction School for Wives
How do we build up our houses rather than tear them down?
For the past year this post has sat in my drafts folder waiting for me to obey God. My courage is weak, but His power will be seen through that weakness. So I’m submitting to Him and I don’t know where it will lead.
Four other women have joined me to commit to soaking in the word of God on a topic that is a struggle for us in our marriage, training to build up our husbands and marriage in that area for a month, and then writing on the experience for you each Wednesday. Our hope is that God will transform our marriages and yours through our transparency into doors and windows to the Gospel. But mostly, I suspect that He will change our own hearts to be more like his.
Meet the Team of Writers
Let me introduce the ladies who will be joining me here at Quiet Graces for this series.
Wife to Bob. Mom of 3. A sweet Pennsylvanian encourager who I met through Holley Gerth’s God Sized Dream Team. I noticed her because Sedryn and her boy Adam were totally rocking the same blond curly hairdo. 🙂 Elizabeth is a professional writer and also creates art prints with scripture on them. She’s currently writing an incredible series on how creativity occurs in the most unlikely point of our lives: motherhood. Spark Mom is the series title.
What you’re going to appreciate most about Elizabeth is her ability to share her failures in a way that makes you feel normal. As we’ve been working away on this series over the last month, Elizabeth was always the one to quickly admit that she was struggling too.
Elizabeth is most likely the only one in this group of ladies who can do a headstand while looking so ridiculously relaxed (she might be the only one of us who can do a headstand).
Wife to Adam. Mom of 4 under 6. Danielle does not currently blog, but feels a tug on her heart telling her that He may be calling in that direction. She’s scared out of her mind over writing for this series. Danielle is a dear real life friend who I’ve only come to know very well in the past 4 months. We’ve bonded over the tears of desperate introverted moms who just want a few minutes of peace yet are being refined by the little people in our house. It’s almost painful to see the amount of sin these little people drag up from our hearts!
What you’re going to appreciate most about Danielle is her honest struggle against perfectionism. She grew up in a home where appearances were more important than the heart (I think many of us can relate in one way or the other), and I feel like she’s learning to give herself grace for being a human who fails. Ah, but walking with her as she learns this lesson is so encouraging to me when I find myself struggling through the same thing.
Danielle lives in a small house and disappears into the bathroom for good cries, good prayer times, and just a moment of peace (like most moms I know).
Wife to Lee. Mom of 1 sweet girl named Emma who has fought a long journey growing from severely autistic to low spectrum autism in her 7 years. Sarah was a crazy ring leader in my college dorm and my chaplain at one point. We used to run together when we got stressed (I hate running… so let me tell you that was all love). Sarah has a really unique perspective for this series because she has struggled through a heart wrenching biblical divorce with her first husband.
What you’re going to love most about Sarah is how she values her Savior’s love. He was there for her through some difficult years filled with abandonment and sorrow but has now learned God fills all crevices of a broken heart and that there’s a season for everything and that relationship always inspires me to seek Him more.
Sarah secretly would like to would like to climb to the highest mountain and be completely transparent but she’s a little scared about what some of us would think.
Wife to the hysterical Brad. Mom of 3 girls 3 and under. Julia and I met through blogging our journeys with baby twins. I felt called to encourage her and that encouragement led to some partnering on our blogs: most notably our True Beauty Series. Which lead to us reading Sacred Sex together. A year and a half after our relationship began, Julia’s husband surprised her with a week visit with me. We moved from screen friends to in real life friends. I’m blessed to know her.
What you’re going to love most about Julia is her sense of humor coupled with the truths she’s learning. She’ll be the first to admit that she can’t even manage to weed her gorgeous and humongous garden during this season of her life, but her learning of her limitations is teaching her that she is enough in Christ. And that’s a perspective we all need.
I’ll nominate Julia for the one mostly likely in this group to have both hand sanitizer, baby wipes, diaper cream, and fabulously stylish sunglasses on her person at all times.
Will you Join as We Train to Build our Marriages?
A little construction school for wives? Cling with me to the cross?
We’d love to hear your thoughts on this series. Has your marriage experienced seasons of dry rotting bitterness? Do you find it more natural to tear down your house than to build it up? What area do you feel like you need God to do the most transforming work in your marriage?
List of Posts in this Series
- Because He Love Me by Melissa Aldrich
- On Words and Weakness by Melissa Aldrich
- In the Dirt Serving by Elizabeth Anne
- Learning to Trust God and My Man by Danielle
- Showing Unconditional Love by Sarah
- The Intentional Marriage Bed by Julia
- Words and Anger: What it all Boils Down to by Melissa Aldrich
- The Great Deck Sit by Elizabeth Anne