Marriage Monday: The Blame Game
It is interesting when you first get married to find out all of the quirks and eccentricities that have gone unnoticed about your spouse. Some of these are endearing and cute, while others are less so. My poor wife had no idea what she signed up for when she married me. I am thankful that she didn’t read the fine print. One of my charming habits, of which she was unaware, is that I use the microwave as a storage compartment of sorts. If I open a package of snacks or goodies and have some left, I will often stick the remainders in the microwave for safekeeping.
As newly weds, only couple of months into our marriage, I had a “snack pack” of Doritos in the middle of the night and only ate half of the bag. As was usual, I folded the remainder up and stuck them in the microwave near the back. The next morning I hear Devon screaming barely audible over the smoke detector, “The microwave is on fire.” I sprint frantically into the kitchen to see flames shooting out of the microwave. My immediate response was, “What did you do?” “How can you possibly blow up a microwave?” It was later discovered that I left a molotov cocktail of sorts, comprised of Doritos and aluminum foil in the microwave. I had always heard you cannot heat foil in the microwave, and let me attest that this is no joke. I later apologized for jumping on Devon’s case and purchased the microwave of her choice with great humility.
Isn’t it funny that in our marriages when something goes awry we are quick to shift the blame to our spouse? This has been happening since the very first couple. When Adam and Eve decided to disobey God and eat of the fruit they had been commanded not to, God shows up wanting answers. When God questions Adam, he replies, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.” Adam blames God for making her and Eve for giving him the fruit. He sees himself as a passive victim.
Our natural tendency in our relationships is to blame our spouse for the problems as they arise. Nobody wants to be wrong. Rarely do we want to own up to our failures, shortcomings, or sins. Sure, our spouses are going to make mistakes and mess up. At times, they will mess up in a big way, but who are we to assume that every marital dysfunction is the result of our spouse’s behavior?
Maybe we need to take a look in the mirror, at times, and examine what ownership we need to take of the problems. Perhaps, we need to be a bit slower in making judgments and be willing to give our spouse the benefit of the doubt. We must understand that with marriage comes difficulties, and no one person is responsible for the entirety of struggles in a marriage.
If we will just take some time to think before we blame, we might realize that it is our fault the microwave is on fire.
“Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear.” – James 1:19
Walk good. Live wise. Be blessed.