only help my unbelief


The big things and the little things
December 11, 2008, 10:26 am
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Two nights ago, I had a bit of a meltdown. It was partly wedding, partly lack of sleep, partly sin, partly Chelsey. Christian got to experience my emotional instability in all its un-glory.

Last night we were driving to a Christmas party and were stuck in traffic for a good 30 minutes. We started talking a little bit about our conversation the night before, and Christian asked me a couple questions about how he could have responded better (for the record, I thought he responded well). He asked me if there was anything he said that really didn’t help the situation, and what kinds of questions he could ask that would point me to Christ and keep me from getting defensive.

Of course, it wasn’t all his fault, but him being so vulnerable with me made me willing to confess the pride and sin in my heart to him, and within 20 minutes or so, what little tension might have remained was gone. All that was left was joy and closeness.

I think that was one of those Big Things that you’re supposed to do in marriage, and I’m so glad we’re being given opportunities to practice in little ways.

But I don’t think it’s just about how we deal with conflict. I think there are smaller things, almost more meaningful things, that nurture that closeness.

The best example I can think of is actually an example of me failing miserably, but maybe some of you can learn from my mistakes.

After the party last night, I stayed at Christian’s apartment for a few minutes. Because my computer is broken, I’m having severe Facebook withdrawal, so he let me use his computer. We sat next to each other while I browsed profiles and read through some items on Google Reader. He watched some YouTube videos I had starred, and he commented on some recipes I had saved (“So, once we’re married, we’re eating chocolate desserts and stove-top macaroni and cheese?” he says. What can I say? That’s what the food bloggers are making these days, it seems.). Then he said he wanted to watch an episode of The Adventures of Pete and Pete (TAOPAP).

His roommate recently got them an entertainment center and TV, and Christian has been really excited to watch some of his DVDs. I never watched TAOPAP as a kid, so I have no attachment to it, and the one episode I have seen I thought was fairly stupid.

I watched the first half of the episode with him, although I wasn’t paying attention at all. Then I picked up his laptop and continued perusing the blogosphere. I completely lost touch with the television.

As soon as the credits started rolling, though, I noticed Christian sitting on the other end of the couch, and I felt so far away from him. I immediately felt terrible.

“Hey, Christian?”

“Yeah?”

“Would you have enjoyed it if I’d watched TAOPAP with you?”

He smiled a little. “Maybe.”

Lesson learned. Next time, sweet boy, I will watch it with you, and we can laugh together.