I am a talker…okay pipe down…I can hear all the comments from the peanut gallery 😉 My incredible wife, not so much a talker, and there is nothing wrong with that…but when anything becomes excessive, to the point that it is hindering our freedom or hurting other people, we cannot say, “That’s Just The Way I Am.” Eileen might have to talk to me more than she might prefer to at times because that is what I need, and love requires that we make sacrifices for the sake of other people. There are also times when I would like to rattle on and on in conversation, but I notice that Eileen is not really enjoying it, so I decide to be quiet or I go find someone else to talk to.
I am starting to learn…starting to understand, that we must work with God to find the balance between being who we are and not excusing unloving behavior by saying, “That is just the way I am.” God is in the business of changing us into His image and that means He helps control our weaknesses and He uses our strengths.
Eileen and I have very different personalities and we are learning that we need to be what the other needs and yet not go so far that we lose our own freedom. I am trying to meet Eileen’s needs and she is trying do to the same for me. Eileen likes to do things that I don’t enjoy, but I still encourage her to do them…I have even started to do them with her…so she can feel fulfilled, and she treats me the same way. When a friend or spouse needs you to adapt in some area to make the relationship better, it is foolish and selfish to say, “Sorry, that is just the way I am.” We may be more comfortable and find it easier to do what we feel like doing, but we can make adjustments and still not lose our individuality. We can make ourselves very miserable and have stressed-filled lives by never being willing to change or adapt. We are all different, but we can all get along peacefully if we are willing. Ask God to help you be sensitive to the needs of those around you and give you the grace to adapt in whatever way you need to in order to walk in love with them. Trust God to help you be all things to all people.