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Opposites…Strengthen

I’m pretty sure God has a great sense of humor. You might be wondering what made me think this?

Marriage.

On our wedding day, we think we are marrying someone who is so similar to us. That’s how it was for Lance & I. We got along perfectly…we never fought.  Who needs pre-marital counseling?? (We did it but were convinced we didn’t need to).

It’s funny (interesting funny) how actually living with that same someone can quickly correct that misconception. If you are married, you know exactly what I am talking about.

Here’s what it looks like for me and my husband: 12264075376_172db0eb0a_z
I’m cold-natured.  {Did someone turn on the air conditioner in here?}
He’s hot-natured. {Could someone please turn on the air conditioner in here??}

I wake up early.
He stays up late. {True story: one morning I was leaving for work and he was just getting ready to go to sleep.}

He likes to go out.
I like to…not go out. {Pajamas are just so comfortable – who wants to change?}

He likes to try new places.
I like to go to old places. {If it ain’t broke…}

He likes to hug people, animals,trees, anything.
I like waving and believe that a nice pat on the shoulder goes a long way.

I could keep going but I think you get my point.

They say opposites attract. Paula Abdul even sang about it. But it could also be said that opposites get on each other’s nerves. It doesn’t have the same ring to it but ain’t it the truth? It was definitely our truth.

Thankfully, the older we got and the longer we were married, we learned to work around our differences. But recently, God challenged me to take it one step further.

Instead of just working around it, how about embracing the differences? Embrace it like a big old hug in an air-conditioned restaurant past 9 p.m..

Yup. Like that.

One of Lance’s greatest strengths is his ability to plan but still be flexible. When we were first married, it drove me crazy – after all, what is the point of making a plan if we aren’t going to stick to it?

This is an area that I continue to struggle with so I finally decided to lean in on his strength.  I told myself that when I saw him choosing people over a plan, I would go with it.

Case in point: my week usually consists of going to work, cook/clean on my days off and crossing off everything on my to do-list. Best.feeling.ever. 

But instead of these past few weeks just being filled with my plans…I found my weeks filled with people.

Time with friends. Time with family. Less rushing and longer conversations.

And I loved it. Best.feeling.ever.

I still remember years ago when we attended a birthday party and got reacquainted with someone we had both known for years.  Lance, being Lance, made plans for us to go to dinner with him and his wife (whom we had just met).

My first thought was…why? We have enough friends. I would rather just stay home.

But I agreed and I am so glad I did. This particular couple has now become one of our dearest friends.

Now please don’t think I’ve become a doormat. I haven’t. In fact, I’ve seen my husband lean into my strengths too. And please don’t think I’ve perfected this. I haven’t.

But the results have been pretty cool…new places have now become old favorites, new people have become old friends.

What is it for you? Do you see something in your husband that you recognize as a weakness for you but a strength for him? Leverage that strength. God put you together for a reason.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10a,12 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

~Anu

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