by Pastor Russ Higa
Judy and I were married way back in 1979. She was just 26 and I was 25. While we were dating, I had her on a pedestal. She was my princess and I would buy her gifts and treat her as the most special woman in my life. Soon after we got married, we moved to Portland, Oregon, so that I could finish my last three years of seminary school.Is it please? Thank you? Yes dear? Those are great words but a different script saved my marriage. Here’s my story.
I clearly remember the first night in our new apartment. She started cooking dinner at about 8:30 pm. By 9:30, my stomach was growling and so was I. Perplexed, Judy looked at me and asked, “Why are you so grouchy?” I responded, “I’m so hungry. When are we going to eat?” She responded, “Oh, I didn’t know. I eat whenever I feel like it.” Looking back, that episode was a sign of more stress to come. I quickly realized that my wonderful wife was creative, spontaneous and free-flowing. I, on the other hand, liked everything in order, like eating at the same time and being on time. I hated being late for anything.
So, who do you think got irritated? Not Judy! I’d grumble, “We’re late again. Don’t you know I don’t want to be late?!” “Judy, why do you leave your stuff on the dinner table? The table is for food, not storage!” Marriage to a spontaneous woman was quite an adjustment for me. We had wonderful times together, but I was often impatient and irritated.
Seeking a solution, I began praying, “Lord, please change my wife. Help her to get organized!” My repeated prayer got no answer. Then one day I sensed Father God’s answer. “Russell, Judy doesn’t have to change. You have to! You must become more loving and patient!”
In spite of my protests, I knew my Father was right. It was then that I learned the words that saved my marriage. “Will you forgive me? Will you please forgive me for my impatience, for being demanding and for acting unloving?”
When Judy responded, “I forgive you,” our marriage was revitalized. We’ve been married 37 years now and from time to time we still need to say those precious words.
“Will you forgive me?” Yes, I forgive you.”
Even in your golden years, practice forgiving and asking for forgiveness. Those eight words may save a precious relationship.
STREAMS OF LIFE FELLOWSHIP
Manoa Elementary School Cafeteria
3155 Manoa Road, Honolulu HI 96822
808-554-4513 | www.streamsoflife.org
Services: Sundays, 10 am
Alternate site: Manoa District Park
2721 Ka‘aipu Ave., Honolulu HI 96822