The "I do more!" marriage challenge

We are talking about marriage this week. Read the intro HERE and jump on into the discussion :)

OK- how many of you are busy bees around the house and keep your house squeaky clean? Now, how many of you are more of a "straightener" and just keep the house "presentable"? Um- that would be me.

For some reason- God did not bless me with the gift of housekeeping. I love to be in my house. I love to have a house. I just don't like to clean it.

For the first several years of our marriage, I would say I was a better house cleaner than I am now. Part of the reason was because I worked during the day(so we were both gone) and we didn't have kids to mess it up! Brandon may argue this point and say it's always been dirty, but let's just pretend I once was a good housekeeper for the example, OK?

As we had children, and got busy in youth ministry- the house was the first thing to go. Since I'm not a natural cleaner anyways, I think it's easy to let slip what's not important to you.

We decided we needed a list. Yes- a list would help us! We made a list of "Brandon's chores" and "Christi's chores". That worked for about...... a week.

Then before we knew it, one of us was falling behind (it was usually me). Then we got into several spouts about who had done more during the day.We even listed out what we had done to try and make the point we had done more! I actually wanted to keep a new list of all the things I had done to prove I was a good wife!

It became very hurtful actually. Brandon felt like I was saying he was not a good handyman around the house and I felt like he was saying I wasn't a good wife. It became personal really quick. Just like I said- we began to question our place in the marriage-to question if we were "good enough" for the other person and that's a bad place to be.

I cannot tell you how many times we fought about this....countless times. Until, finally we decided it had to stop!

There is no "he" or "she" in marriage, only "we".

WE should be working as a team. WE should try and help the other person out or give them grace rather than bring them down. WE should try to talk about it in a non-confrontational way so that it doesn't become a huge fight. WE needed to realize that in the scheme of life it did not matter. It does not matter, really.

We still have occasional times of frustration in this area but in the end we realize, it's not worth it. We love each other and want to spend time laughing and enjoying life together rather than fight about the house. That's not to say that we just get to let the house go and never do our part! And- this is an area we have not fully overcome, but we are overcoming.

We just have to see that person for who they are. Accept them for where they are. I may not be a good housekeeper and Brandon might not be a handyman but we love each other. Period. That's what counts.

We are not competing against each other. When the other person does something that contributes to the marriage- honor it! Don't beat it down to make yourself feel better!

So- when you get that feeling like you are doing more in your marriage (not just around the house), remember we are all not perfect. There will be a time when you are on the receiving end and your spouse seems to be doing "more".

So- serve each other. With joy. Aren't you glad you have someone to share your home with? To eat your meals with? Are you glad you have someone to be ONE with?

See- now the dirty laundry doesn't seem so bad, does it?

Is this an area that you struggle with in your marriage? How have you overcome or how are you overcoming this area? What areas do you "fall behind" in?