New eyes, new perspective isn’t that what God offers? A few years ago my husband suffered a severe depression. It was a difficult time in our family. I too often focused on my own suffering and how my needs were not met. He had made a career change and was struggling and at first that was all I saw. Depressions don’t arrive with a letter explaining what is happening, instructions, etc. Note to God: a rash or swelling as an indication might be helpful….please.
But God doesn’t provide us “cheat sheets.” Fortunately, God does tell us how to live. He commands that we respect our husbands and love neighbors (which I interpret to include husbands). God also offers a new perspective. The fruits of the spirit allow us to love through Christ. Proverbs instruct us to see through God’s eyes and not rely on our own sight. And 2 Corinthians 5:7 explains that we are to walk by faith, not sight. Finally through prayer I saw my husband in a new light. I had new “eyes” for him. God’s “Lasix” is more powerful, less expensive than that offered at the optometrist. I saw Jim not as someone who was hurting me and my children but someone who himself was hurting inside.
Additionally God showed me observations to which I had previously been blinded. Three years prior to the depression we had been living in Stuttgart. My husband is so fluent in German that he was regularly mistaken for a German. I, on the other hand, stumbled through and relied on him daily. What a difference to go from excelling in a skill for 10 hours or more each day, being needed for basic communication, and having recognition for your talents to a new environment without these things.
Similarly, living near the Alps we skied regularly. Jim is an expert skier. Even out of the corner of my eye I can recognize the most graceful dot gliding down the slope as my precious husband. He is truly poetry in motion. Relocating to Atlanta, skiing was not part of our routine.
Lastly, taking advantage of Europe’s six weeks paid vacation and plenty of holidays, we traveled constantly. Back roads, the autobahn, train schedules, whatever, Jim would navigate it with perfection.
Fast forward three years where we are settling into the United States with familiar surroundings, plenty of family support, and two babies keeping us at home, so many skills go unnoticed. How had I missed these observations? Without God would I have ever seen my husband in the right light? I made some changes. Today, we are house swapping addicts and thus loaded with travel opportunities. I am the volunteer German teacher twice weekly for our children’s school. I lean on my husband’s expertise for each lesson. Finally, we ski. The annual ski trip is the most yearned for and relived for each of our children. We all enjoy the family time, snow, and change of scenery. Most importantly, my husband is our hero.
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