Ever heard of an eye for an eye situation? My father told me this story recently A wife asked her husband to take her shopping one day. The husband refused because he wanted to watch a football match instead. The wife went shopping on her own but took her husband’s phone and the remote control so her husband would not be able to change channels on the television set. When the wife tried paying for the clothes that she had got, the machine reported that her card had been blocked. She goes home upset and finds a note on the door, SEE YOU LATER HONEY, GONE TO WATCH THE FOOTBALL MATCH WITH MY FRIENDS. She tries to open the door but it is locked. Now she has her husband’s phone and does not know how to contact him.
This story made me laugh but it got me thinking.
This is what the world has come down to. I bet the wife will try to revenge also for being locked out of her own house. She may refuse to prepare dinner for her husband or worse husband finds a note- SEE YOU TOMORROW HONEY, GONE TO SPEND THE NIGHT AT MY MOTHER’S PLACE.
When another person’s decision does not favor us we throw tantrums like three year olds. The wife should have not taken the remote control and her husband’s phone. The husband on the other hand should not have blocked his wife’s account and taken the house keys.
Why do we do these things to each other when we claim to love each other?
There are lessons to be learnt from this story-
- The wife should have accepted that her husband at that particular time would rather watch the match than go shopping because let us face reality, men would rather stay home and clean the house than go shopping. He does not want to see the movie that has played all too much of his wife changing clothes and unable to make a decision as to what to buy. The wife will be asking for his opinion but not really needing it.
Wife: Honey which one should I get? The blue one or the red one?
Husband: The blue one.
Wife: No it makes me look fat. I will take the red one.
The wife also forgot that there are times when her husband compromises and does what she likes because he loves her but on this day he just wanted to watch the match. And one other important thing, she forgot her husband is the one paying for her shopping.
The wife’s actions were selfish.
- The husband retaliated. He could have forgiven his wife even before the wife apologized. Blocking the bank account and locking the house was not a good move. Of course he was hurt by his wife’s actions but he did not have to GIVE HER THE TASTE OF HER OWN MEDICINE. His wife at that time had gone to CRAZYVILLE and acted like a spoiled brat but the husband should have stayed calm. It is good to show people that there will be consequences to their actions but know when to draw the line. A classic example of forgiveness can be borrowed from the character Gontse from the famous soapie Scandal. Gontse forgave her friend for sleeping with her husband. She even offered the other woman a job. It sounds crazy but Gontse did this for her own benefit. It is said-BEING ANGRY IS LIKE HOLDING BURNING COAL AND EXPECTING THE OTHER PERSON TO GET BURNT.
- Stop holding grudges and communicate with each other. This big blow up could have been caused by pilling feelings of hurt and disappointments that went unchecked. This could have been a volcano that had been growing and growing until it erupted. Do not go to bed angry with your spouse. Talk about it and resolve it before going to bed. Tomorrow will be a new day and it has to be started on a fresh page rather than on yesterday’s page of hurt. One rotten tomato in a bunch of other tomatoes eventually spreads its disease to the other tomatoes if not taken out in time. So deal with every hurt as it comes instead of letting it pile up.
- Gratitude is also important in relationships. Your son may not be good at cleaning his room but he may be getting straight A’s at school. So why are you on his neck about his dirty room than being grateful for the good in him? No one is perfect we are all human and we make mistakes. In the story above the husband was not able to accompany his wife to the mall but he was a good provider. Making sure his wife had a home, can go shopping whenever she wanted to and she had a car that was always loaded with petrol to take her anywhere she wants to go.
- Appreciation for the good in others is also to be employed. Instead of locking the doors and taking the keys with him the husband should have used buttons on the television to change channels. Of course it would take a little bit longer but really he had nothing to lose. While watching the match he could have started preparing dinner for his wife. As a treat. If she is the one who if always preparing dinner the husband should have turned the tables and surprised his wife. Instead of being angry as the wife would expect from him he could have stayed calm. Imagine how bad he would feel if the wife were to get stranded without petrol money because he blocked the accounts. The feeling of guilt would now be invited into the party.
- Taking time to think about your actions is also really important. They both acted out of frustration and did not wait to think that their actions would hurt the very person they profess to love each day. None of them thought of the consequences of their actions. Instead of processing and taking the appropriate action they just wanted to hurt each other.
In her book: Seize The Day, Joyce Meyer says- LET US BE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT OUR REACTION TO THOSE WHO HURT US THAN WE ARE ABOUT WHAT THEY HAVE DONE TO US. WHAT THEY HAVE DONE IS ULTIMATELY BETWEEN THEM AND GOD AND OUR REACTION IS BETWEEN GOD AND US. WE WILL NEED TO BE PREPARED TO FORGIVE PEOPLE IN OUR LIVES, AND SOME OF THEM OVER AND OVER AGAIN.
- We have to know that we are on the same team. Why do we keep fighting each other when in fact we are one? UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL- they say. So how do husband and wife build a home if all they do is fight and keep thinking of revenge on the other? How will businesses thrive if employee and employer are always at war?
As if he did not make me laugh enough my father asked- HAVE YOU NOTICED HOW AFTER THE FUNERAL ONE BY ONE PEOPLE WHO WERE OWED BY THE DECEASED COME TO THE RELATIVES OF THE DECEASED AND ANNOUNCE THAT THEY WERE OWED BY THE DECEASED. BUT THOSE THAT OWED THE DECEASED DO NOT SHOW UP?
So why do we want to be forgiven but are not willing to forgive?
Let us love each other whole heartedly. Grudges will break down relationships. Any type of relationship. FORGIVE DO NOT REVENGE. ACCEPT DO NOT REVENGE.