Last Saturday my husband and I went to a friend’s and had some wine. A few glasses of wine were just the gasoline that I needed to pick a fight with my husband. It did not end well at all and involved a lot of embarrassing details that I’m not going to write about.
My husband and I spent the entire week angry at each other. By Friday I was in the bathroom walking in circles begging God to help me because I was pretty close to losing my mind and I didn’t really know what else to do. The entire week I kept hearing God telling me to just do nothing. That seemed nuts to me, because the overwhelming feeling that someone had to do something was strong. I didn’t make threats, throw things out the window, break any car windows, make a scene or act crazy in any other way.
Throughout the entire week the Holy Spirit showed up in huge ways. Ways that I can’t even make up and that had me shocked at the lengths God will go for us when we allow Him in our lives.
I had always assumed that letting God handle things was something we as Catholics just say, but we don’t ever really mean it. Sure, we put them in His hands, but then we still do something! Right? Well, I’ll tell you this, God is much better at handling our pain, sorrow, mistakes and heartaches than we are. That’s what I learned last week.
Come Saturday morning, my husband and I sat in our room and finally began to talk. We both apologized and then we went to confession together, which is about the most Catholic way to make up in a Catholic marriage. I was still trying to hold onto my anger at him though and as I kneeled in front of the tabernacle doing my penance, I heard God say to me “you asked for your husband and I brought him back to you, so you’re just gonna stay mad at him and hold a grudge?”. At that moment I decided that no, I wasn’t. How could I? I just walked out of the same confessional that he had and I had just confessed my sins just like he had and I had received the same forgiveness and mercy that he had. God forgave him, who the hell do I think that I am not to? And just like that, I was over it. It is impossible to be mad at someone who you go to confession with.I have anger issues. Really bad anger issues. They stem from my abandonment issues and when I act out of anger, things go from bad to really horrible awful. For months I have been trying to surrender my anger to God so that I can be freed from it and to also be freed from my trust issues.
My trust issues made it very difficult to really be a wife. What I figured out on Saturday as I prayed in front of the Blessed Sacrament is that in the Sacrament of Marriage as a Catholic, my trust isn’t in my husband. I love him as best as I can, I do whatever I can to will the good of his soul, I do my best every day to meet the obligations of my vocation but no matter what, I will fail to love him perfectly and he will fail to love me perfectly. God, on the other hand, will never fail us. He always has our back. If my husband does things behind my back, God knows. God will hold him accountable for those things. I am not responsible for anyone’s actions but my own. The only thing that I have to worry about is being a good wife, mother and disciple. That’s what I’ll be judged on, not on whether or not others betray me, that’s their problem.
As I walked out of my parish I felt so free that I could have skipped all the way home. I am free because I know that my husband does love me and that I love him and what we lack in being able to love each other perfectly is made up by the Love of God. That is the Grace of the Sacrament and why we get married in the Catholic Church.
I finally feel a little freer from my anger and free to love others. Mostly I feel free to trust in the Mercy of God for myself and for those who wrong me. It’s an amazing feeling.