I follow several of my favorite writers on Facebook, and this morning Lysa TerKeurst used the following verse of Scripture in her post: “A fools lips walk into a fight and his mouth invites a beating.” These words are found in Proverbs 18:6. Something about them grabbed at my heart, and immediately I knew what it was that had grabbed at me. God was trying to tell me something that I had ignored and avoided for so many years. The following will explain, I hope, my need to write out these thoughts.
Suzanne, I don’t quite know how to begin other than to say I’m sorry. Sorry for the times we have hurt each other, but more so for the times that together we have hurt your dad, my husband. For 30 years now, we have each allowed our pride and stubborness and yes, our words, get in the way of maintaining a peaceful relationship for your relationship with your dad. Somehow, “we” doesn’t always work for you and I, and I’m willing to admit my guilt and my part in that. But this isn’t about the past, it’s about moving forward.
In the beginning, when your dad and I married, I spoke to the fact that I wanted us to be friends. I told you that I couldn’t be your mom simply because I wasn’t and I shouldn’t try to be. You seemed pleased with that. And I have kept my promise there. But one promise I’ve not kept is one I’ve made over and over again to God and that is to hold my tongue when the words I emit aren’t helpful. Thus, my letter.
On Father’s Day this year, you called your dad. For months, it had seemed that we had finally reached a point where the three of us could hold a pleasant conversation on the phone. Living and talking long distance isn’t easy, but you need to know that a threesome was what dad always wanted. But on Father’s Day, it all fell apart. You and I couldn’t restrain ourselves to not “get into it” over certain words you had used to describe your dad. I should have just let it go, but Satan was sitting on my shoulder urging me to defend my husband. That isn’t necessary — God is always here to make things right — and I should have just stayed silent. My words weren’t necessary. I am really sorry that the call ended so abruptly with so many hurt feelings.
It has bothered me ever since and although it seems we are at an impasse again, I am writing down these words because I have prayed and God has lead me to accept my place in this difficult place. I very much want you to have time with your dad. So, I’m willing to allow you and dad to have your phone calls alone, the way they probably should always have been unless you invited me in. Dad and I have talked about this, and we are in agreement that it should be tried. I hope you will accept my apology and that you’ll be willing to pick up the phone and call dad real soon or email him. He misses you, and his heart breaks when he doesn’t hear from you.
Most importantly, I have asked God’s forgiveness in all this, and I ask for yours too.
I should tell you that Suzanne responds best to emails via Facebook so I’ve left this message for her there. My hope isn’t that I’ll hear from her. My hope is that she will take up that cell phone and call her dad. She and I have hurt each other, and most of all my sweet husband, more times than I’d like to count. I’ve never reached out like this before. When I saw Lysa’s verse today, I knew what I had to do. I had been foolish in ignoring God’s guidance before but now he had literally called my hand! I needed to accept responsibility and no longer be a fool in subjecting my husband’s heart to hurt by my lips and my words.
I’m linking up with Joan over at Grace Cafe today, a part of her Reflections of His Grace blog. Won’t you join me there to read Joan’s post for today as well as those of others who have linked up? You won’t be sorry!