A few weeks ago my husband brought me a gingerbread cookie with a little note that said “The Perfect Man” “He’s quite, He’s sweet, and if he gives you any grief you can bite his head off”. Being me, this put me deep into thought about what my husband may or may not be trying to say with this goofy little cookie. Sure it seems he just thought it was cute on the surface, but was he really trying to tell me he feels like he falls short of being the perfect man?
As a young girl, and even into the early years of womanhood, I would often sit and daydream about my idea of the perfect husband. As I would lay in bed at night I would think about how he would sweep me off my feet, meet my every need and all the while simply be happy with who I was. We would do things together, we would dance, hold hands, he would hold me while I slept. He would be proud of me, showing me off to his friends, tell me I was beautiful, and even though I know better, I would feel secure knowing he saw my inner beauty. That is hardly the least of it but I am sure you can see where I am going.
Some days I wonder if I have any inner beauty, or if I am as ugly on the inside as I am the outside. I’ve never been swept off my feet or told I was beautiful inside or outside by anyone I dated. In fact if I take a real good look at my reflection I can see where I have been selfish, pigheaded and hypocritical to say the least.
I’ve been guilty of trying to make myself into the woman my husband wanted, but only half heartedly most of our relationship. I resented him for not being happy with who I was, I shut down, put up walls and relied on myself. I was never going to be good enough or perfect.
Now things are a lot different. Each day I go to the Lord and ask Him to help me to be the person my husband wants me to be. Show me Lord what I can say and do to win my husband back in body soul and mind. The last few months as I have changed my thoughts, my words and my actions, I have done it with a renewed heart and mind. On the worst days I think “at least I know in the end I did everything I could, I didn’t just go through the motions.”
I’ve grown up a lot over the last few years and months even. I don’t pray for the Lord to change my husband. I still catch myself wishing he would touch me or hold my hand, and hoping for someday to come sooner. The big difference for me today, is that I turn these things over to the Lord. I’ve made my requests, my husband knows what they are, now I lift him to God to make him into the man God wants him to be, not the man I want him to be.
As I think of the “perfect man”, my thoughts travel to my father, who was far from perfect. He was a Vietnam war veteran and he drank to much in an attempt to forget what he had to see and do in war. My dad drank and drive, he was married three times, and had at least six children. I only remember attending church as a family a handful of times, and one of those was at his funeral. My dad would often tell me to keep my head in the books, not to chase boys. Don’t have sex before your married its a sin. Don’t drink, don’t smoke don’t do drugs. I don’t remember my dad ever spanking me after the age of about 4, but I remember I didn’t do most of the typical high school kid stuff just because I was scared of disappointing my daddy. As an adult, I wonder if my dad would be disappointed in me. There is a lot in my past I am ashamed of, or would he be proud of the obstacles I have overcome?
We are not born perfect, nor are we capable of perfection on our own. The bible however says
“For by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy”. Hebrews 10:14 NIV.
I don’t think this means I am going to face less struggles, or fail less, In fact I don’t even think it means that I will be perfect during my life on this earth. In fact I’ve found that since knowing God people are much more likely to point out my shortcomings, when I fail, than ever before. It sounds like to me this is going to be a journey, as I am transformed and made holy, and perfected when we reach eternity.
I read my bible daily. I pray multiple times through out the day, often without intending to start out in prayer. I still struggle. I still fail. How can I possible expect the perfect man?
My hope and prayer today is that my husband will see the perfect man isn’t the one who will sweep me off my feet and make my dreams come true.
The perfect man is the one who is imperfect but who continually seeks the Lord in His word and prayer.