Labor for Jesus, Labor for Love

I am a procrastinator. I push the limits. I wait and wait until I can’t wait anymore. In some areas of my life, this is good. For example, I work best under pressure, so college papers were an easy A when writing them the night before.

While this was fabulous for my GPA, it has proven to fail me in other areas of my life.

My marriage is revealing where my procrastination is fatal.

Disagreements are familiar foes in any relationship, especially the marital relationship. Mine is no different. The difference in my marriage is that my husband is locked behind steel bars and large concrete walls 140 miles away. When disagreements arise there are no beds made on the couch, or days of co-existing in silent treatment.

My marriage involves uncertainty of exposure.

My husband can be “locked in” without warning, or unable to get a slot on one of the two phones designated for his block containing nearly a hundred men. When you have a hundred men using two phones, (if they’re both working properly.) with twenty-minute time slots and a few sporadic hours to use them, there can be chaos.

The reality is that a line for the phone can, and has, turned to bloodshed and death.

Though rare, there may be days we are completely unable to talk. Even if we are able to connect, he has been trained to listen for “bells” during conversation. Any bell is cue for him to hang up immediately.

With these circumstances I have learned to not procrastinate in bringing the olive branch to my husband. Though I usually, unintentionally, procrastinate long enough for him to extend it to me first. (Stinking pride and stubbornness.)

We have quickly learned that our marriage, our time together in fellowship, is far more precious than holding on to any disagreement.

We labor in love to bring reconciliation, as Jesus did for us with our Father. (2 Corinthians 5:18, Colossians 1:20) We refuse to labor for the enemy, dividing our fellowship. (John 10:10) We are learning to be quick in bringing forgiveness and peace. (Perhaps one is quicker than the other, thank you my beloved for your honorable lead.)

We have been forced to understand that our time is a valuable treasure and we ought not procrastinate in redeeming the time. (Ephesians 5:16)

I am certainly not a fan of our circumstances. I am however the biggest Jacob Rouse fan, and an even bigger fan of this marriage. When you love someone so deeply, and are as deeply committed, procrastination is not an option.

I am thankful that I am learning these invaluable lessons now, so that when my husband is home, there will still be no beds made on the couch, and no co-existing in silence.

In this marriage, there will always be a labor for love.

I am,

a prisoner’s wife

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