"Once bitten, twice shy." Have you ever heard it? I'm sure you have. The gist of it is, that once we've been hurt, Trust is an incredibly hard thing to give. We throw the blame around without realizing that much of the problem was ourselves to begin with. A lot of times the "bite" is the result of not trusting in the first place. For example, ladies we are supposed to trust God for the man that we are going to marry. Sometimes though, like in my case (2 failed marriages)....we jump in head first looking for love without trusting God or his timing. As a result, kind of like Eve listening to the serpent (we all know how that turned out), we get bit. From that point on it's hard to trust anyone including God. We struggle with the illusion that we have control over our lives and we desperately try to maintain and cling to whatever control we feel we have. We don't open ourselves up to trust easily...and if we aren't careful, the cycle of jumping in and getting hurt will continue.
With that said, let me tell you what's on my mind today. I love my husband, and I absolutely believe that God has placed him in my life and that, Andy is the man that God planned for me. The problem I run into, is that I still have some suitcases laying around, full of baggage from my previous marriages and past experiences. Sometimes, those suitcases make it hard for me to trust my Husband. Even though I know that Andy always tries his best to act in the best interest of this family, I find myself struggling with the fear that is packed up in those suitcases. The fear that sits by the doorway of my heart, that I sometimes trip over on my way to trusting Andy.
Today was a case in point, I felt like the suitcases weren't even going to let me through the door. They were piled up almost to the point where I couldn't see past them. Andy and my Dad were checking out the Subaru and testing it out planning to get it cleaned up and possibly legal for us to drive. I've been praying for us to be able to get a car. You can't know our family without knowing that right now transportation is a big concern for us. I should have been excited. I should have been happy at the possibility of anything to drive and granted I loved the Subaru when I drove it before. Instead...I was angry and frustrated.
Andy was so excited, if you know my husband, well you know that he can get a little loopy when he's excited about something. He was talking non-stop about the car. Meanwhile, I was getting more aggravated by the minute. Here's a little of what was going through my head. "How many times have I told him what's wrong and why the car was parked in the first place? How do these men expect a car that has sit in the yard for almost 2 yrs to be reliable? Doesn't he realize that getting it legal is a waste of money? Yes it's a nice car, but it's never going to run as good as it used to and it might blow up on us and leave us stranded. I can't believe he's even considering driving it!" No, I didn't say any of this out loud but boy was it going through my mind. Andy was happy as a lark, and I seriously just wanted to smack him.
Then later while I was doing dishes...I heard another voice in my head. "Why aren't you trusting your husband?"...... Me, "He doesn't know all of the stuff that's wrong with that car! I've had so much more experience with it, I've told him all about it but he doesn't listen. He wasn't even around here when it was parked." Then I heard it again..."Don't you trust Me?"
Um, how do you put this. I was busted. Here's the thing I learned. Trusting Andy isn't really so much about trusting him as a person. He is human and he does and will make mistakes. However, if I don't trust my husband to lead our home and to make decisions for our family...then to put it bluntly...I'm not trusting God.
"Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord." Ephesians 5:22
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7
As I said above, I absolutely believe that God has put Andy in my life. If I believe that, then I have to believe that God is going to work through my husband to provide for and to direct our family. That's a hard pill to swallow for a girl with a stack of unpacked suitcases. What about those suitcases anyways? If they are getting in the way of my ability to trust my husband then they are certainly getting in the way of my ability to trust God.
"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own
understanding." Proverbs 3:5
Lean not unto thine own understanding. My own understanding, all the hurt and the pain of the past, all of the anger and the "He said this, and He did that's" from previous relationships. All of the disappointments and understanding I have of how unreliable the world is. That's what's in those suitcases and every time I stumble over them I'm reminded of what's inside.
You know the worst part about old suitcases when they've been left sitting around and not cleaned out for ages? They STINK! I know this because I just bought some vintage suitcases for decoration and storage for the new place, but when I got home I realized that I can't put anything new in them, until I clean out the old nasty smell. So basically in life it's the same. I can't fill up my suitcases with good things (Joy, Trust, Respect, Grace) unless I let go of, and let God clean out the bad stuff. I have to trade my pain and disappointments in, for His mercy so that I can fully rely on God, and as a reflection of that rely on my husband.
So I'm gonna try this God's way. I'm going to keep my mouth shut (as hard as it may be), and when I'm handed the keys to the Subaru I'm going to get in and drive without packing up the suitcases for the ride. After all, God created the most amazing universe with such intricate attention to detail that science will never be able to understand or explain it all. Surely, He's a better mechanic than anyone else. How else would you explain a car that's been sitting for so long starting up on the first try?