Love is hard to offend and quick to forgive. How easily do you get irritated and offended in your marriage? There are spouse’s that never pass up an opportunity to get upset with their mate. When something goes wrong, they quickly take full advantage of the situation by expressing how hurt or frustrated they are. They may even put down their spouse to show how powerful they can be. This is wrong, and is the opposite reaction of what love in your marriage should act like.
When you become irritable your inner self is tense. It’s like being like a pointed object feeling ready to jab if the chance comes along. People who become irritable are in a locked position, loaded like a gun, and can at any moment overreact. Something hurtful and negative has caused the irritation and though you may not want to be irritated an unsuitable situation brought on that feeling. You do love your spouse, but hurtful words or being neglected causes sadness and it is hard not to respond when it hurts so deep?
When you are under pressure, love doesn’t need to turn sour. Minor problems shouldn’t yield major reactions. Love should never get angry unless there is a legitimate and just reason in the sight of God. A loving husband will remain calm and patient, showing mercy by retaining his temper. Rage and violence should always be out of the question. A loving wife should not be overly sensitive or cranky, but needs to exercise emotional self-control. She needs to be a flower among the thorns and respond pleasantly during prickly situations. Which is easier said than done.
If you are walking under the influence of love you will be a joy to be around, and not a jerk. Are you a calming breeze or a storm waiting to happen? “Life is a marathon, not a sprint.” You must balance, prioritize, and pace yourself. All too often couples tend to throw caution to the wind and run full steam ahead, doing what feels right at the moment and soon you come up gapping for air, wound up in knots, and ready to snap. The pressure wears away at your patience and your relationship.
Stress and selfishness are the two key reasons that contribute to irritability. Stress weighs you down, drains your energy, weakens your health, and invites you to be in a cranky state of mind. It can be brought on by arguing, and lack of communication, which causes division and bitterness you’ve let build up. Other deficiencies can be not getting enough rest, nutrition, and lack of exercise. Too often we inflict these daggers on ourselves, which sets us up to be irritable.
Selfishness is always the primary heart of all problems. Look at yourself, don’t always point the finger at your spouse. Matthew 12:34 says, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Being easily angered is an indicator that a hidden area of selfishness or insecurity is present where love is supposed to rule. Selfishness wears other marks, of which one is Lust. Lust is being ungrateful for what you have and choosing to covet or burn with passion for something that is forbidden. When your heart is lustful, it will become easily frustrated and angered with your spouse. Bitterness then takes root and you become judgmental and will refuse to work through your provoked anger with the one you are married to.
The answer in these problems is simple, but complex. When love enters your heart it calms you down and inspires you to quit focusing on yourself. Love will help you to loosen your grasp on focusing on you and helps you to let go of unnecessary things that damage your marital relationship. Love will lead you to forgive instead of holding a grudge. Love ultimately lowers your stress and helps you release the venom that has built up inside. It then sets up your heart to respond to your spouse with patience and encouragement rather than anger and exasperation.
The ultimate answer is grasping a hold of God. He is the only answer for a marriage that wants true happiness. The result is truly learning what love really looks and feels like (My thoughts with The Love Dare, pp. 26-28).