I’ve been blogging about my journey through our church’s Lent Experiential Calendar.
An interesting preface: Our church small group talked about critiquing and redeeming the Asian idea of ‘face’. And so this practice of publicly blogging about my Lenten journey, I’m aware, walks this fine line of inviting others into my experience vs. social posturing/image management. Jesus, in fact, warned against praying, giving, or fasting for the wrong audience. And so I realize that I need to keep my heart and motives in check in the days ahead. And I am very open to your help.
Now back to today’s experience. Today we’re supposed to call someone we’ve had a falling out with to make amends. I’ve been thinking about this all day and (fortunately/ignorantly?) I haven’t been able to think of anyone. So I decided to turn to the person I fight with the most: my wife.
I interrupted my wife’s date with The Bachelor and asked if there was any unresolved hurt that I’d caused her in the past couple weeks. Fortunately/ignorantly? she said no. But she did share about a certain pattern of hurtful behavior, if left unchanged, would send me straight to Hades. Ok, that’s not what she said, but I appreciated the soft light she shined on the kind of husband I’ve been.
The hardest thing about patterns is that they are just that: patterns, habits etched into my interactions, often times unconsciously. And because this is in my marriage, it means that I have a habit of hurting my wife, often times unconsciously (which is no excuse). Our conversation reminded me that grace is not only about being forgiven, but it’s about the gift of self-awareness and repentance. Without the gentle prodding of my wife and the power of the Holy Spirit, I’d be running on autopilot in the worst way. And so I pray for grace. And after that I ask for grace again. And I don’t think I’ll ever stop asking, till Kingdom come.
Lord, have mercy
Christ, have mercy
Lord, have mercy on me