So I have just finished my 40 day journey through Alisa Dilorenzo’s new book “Called To Love
.” I hope you have enjoyed following along as much as I have enjoyed blogging about the great insights this book holds for marriage.
As I close out this series, there are two great points I want to bring to your attention. On Day 33 titled, “There are times to hold your tongue.” (Yes, she puts it a little nicer than I did!), Alisa starts out with the passage from Matthew 27:12-14.
“When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. Then Pilate asked him, don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you? But Jesus made no reply, not even a single charge – to the in great amazement of the governor.”
I have to admit, in my own human/prideful weakness, my innate need to be right and defend myself, I always read this and thought, “Come on, Jesus! Say something!” I mean, really? Why didn’t he tell them who he was? Now, of course I know he had been doing that all along and it would make no difference at this point, and he also knew that the whole point of his life was to lay it down for us, and he knew that the time had come. But still, to stand there and not say anything at all!
I love the first paragraph in this day’s devotion. Alisa says, “Jesus did not speak a single negative word when he was accused, when people were speaking poorly of him, when they were calling for his death. He didn’t go to their level. He didn’t allow them to create an emotional response in him.”
How many times have I found myself irate because of something Tim has said (or rather the way he said something) that hit me the wrong way? I have felt so justified in my anger (and often times rudeness) because I had been provoked. But here, Jesus was provoked beyond anything I’ve ever experienced, and yet, “He did not allow them to create an emotional response in him.” Selah (Pause and calmly think about that!)
Alisa goes on to say in day 33, “Our marriages need us to constantly be asking ourselves, what would Jesus do in this situation? If this is one of those times that Jesus would be quiet, I need to be quiet. If this is one of those times that Jesus would let someone vent, I need to let that someone (my spouse) vent. If this is one of those times that I see that my words aren’t going to have an impact because my spouse isn’t in a place to listen, I must choose silence.”
Alisa wraps up this great book with the topic of service. She points out, “Jesus gives us the antidote to our selfishness in these words, “The Son of Man….came to serve.” (From Mark 10:45) She goes on to say, “There is nothing to be gain
ed in demanding to be served. It creates an environment of hostility and resentment. It creates an environment in which relationships wither and die. It’s an environment where people give up and check out. Demanding to be served takes love out of the equation and replaces it with duty and avoidance. Not the best recipe for happy marriage.”
I know many of us may get our back up when we hear we need to serve our spouse. We may begin to ask the question, “What about me?” or begin to play the “If he would….then I would…” game, but allow me to challenge you with what I always tell my kids…and anyone else who will listen. You take care of others, and let God take care of you.
And I promise you, my friend when you honor Him through your acts of love, service and selfless devotion to the ones whom He has called you to love He will pay you back tenfold. That’s just the way He rolls!! (Malachi 3:10
If you have not gotten your own copy of “Called To Love,” I highly encourage you to click here and order yours today! This could be the beginning of a great turning point in your marriage and in yourself.