Sleeping With One Eye Open, Day 3
In the movie Bride Wars, two childhood best friends, Liv, played by Kate Hudson, and Emma, played by Anne Hathaway, have been planning their weddings their whole lives. But they suddenly become rivals when they both schedule their weddings on the same day. They play horrific pranks on each other from making a tan go bright orange-red to switching hair dye at the salon to blue. Liv even says to Emma, “If I was your wedding, I’d be sleeping with one eye open.” What is supposed to be a beautiful memorable day suddenly becomes an ugly competition and as the tagline for the movie says: May the best bride win!
Perhaps you are laughing at the absurdity of it. But it is so easy to go over the edge and become your own worst nightmare during the bridal planning period. Suddenly Sweet Susie Bride becomes a Bridezilla, and the groom starts wondering who he is really marrying. The green-eyed monster comes baring its teeth and somehow society just excuses it because after all – it’s the bride’s big day!
I remember being so frustrated with Adam because he had it so easy! He didn’t have to plan the wedding or come up with the money or pick out the dress or make the plans. I did! I even googled honeymoon locations and made phone calls to rental property owners. I was doing all the work and I was envious of Adam, who seemed to be sitting back and doing nothing. Then one night, a lady friend of mine gently reminded me that when we got married, Adam was responsible for my financial wellbeing (since I wouldn’t be working right away) and my spiritual wellbeing in addition to the spiritual guidance and upbringing of our children. That’s a lot to answer for and shoulder responsibility-wise. Somehow selecting attire for the day and what food to serve at our reception didn’t seem like such a big responsibility in the grand eternal scheme of things.
John 13:35 says,
“By this, all [people] will know that
you are My [Jesus’] disciple, if you
love one another.”
And what does 1 Corinthians 13 say? “Love does not envy.”
Sounds pretty clear to me! Being envious before your wedding day of other brides, past weddings, or other people simply does not reflect the love which Christ calls you to exemplify.
Can you imagine walking down the aisle on your wedding day with all the unkind, spiteful words you said during your engagement pinned to your dress? Can you imagine turning to face your groom and realizing you were carrying a bouquet of every envious thought you had during your engagement? You would be horrified!
The wedding lasts only a day…
…the marriage lasts a lifetime!
In moments of stress, your true character is revealed. How you handle pressure during the wedding planning period is a good indicator of how you will handle pressures in your marriage.
Marla Taviano, author of From Blushing Bride to Wedded Wife: Practical Advice from a Girlfriend – What Marriage is Really Like, writes, “The antidote to envy is focusing on God – being content and grateful for the home, possessions, husband (or husband-to-be), and life He has blessed me with.”
Without a loving heart toward other women, your relationship with God means nothing. We can’t claim to know the Father who is love, and then hate our sister. Without a loving heart toward my husband, my marriage means nothing. Without love, everything is meaningless. I gain nothing, have nothing, and am nothing.
Envy is like the weeds springing up among the rocks or the thorns in the parable of the sower. If you sow envy, you poison love. If your love is shallow, at the first sign of trouble, it will wither. But if you sow the seeds of contentment, it will shelter love.
How do you fight the weeds of envy
in your heart?
*I borrowed this idea from one of my previous posts and tweaked it a little.
There are two types of weed killer – preemergence and postemergence. These are types of herbicides (or chemicals used to destroy weeds) that “create a weed control zone on the soil surface, preventing seeds from germinating,” according to Facts About Weeds.
*An easy way to remember ways to avoid or abolish weeds of envy is to think LOVE.
This type of weed killer is used to prevent weeds from cropping up.
L – Love others sincerely.
Be patient. Show kindness. Talk to your significant other about practical ways you can show love toward one another. When Adam and I were dating/engaged, one of the things we did was send each other little text messages of reasons we loved the other one when we were apart. Find little things you can do to show your significant other you care about him. It doesn’t need to be extravagant – just something to help your love flourish.
O – Open your heart to contentment.
Be content with your fiancé, with who you are, and what you two have and will have together. Pray with your fiancé over your budget and ask God to uproot envious tendencies and to protect you from tension and quarrels over money or wedding details.
V – Venture into the Bible.
E – Engage in a relationship with God.
Paul writes in Philippians 4 that he has learned the secret of being content no matter the circumstances. He is content because he is in relationship with Christ.
These herbicides “are applied after the weed is established and actively growing (Facts About Weeds).”
L – Look up!
As my grandpa says, “Keep looking up!” Stop looking out. Stop looking in. Focus on God’s character, power, and presence.
O – Open your heart to God’s healing.
Ask God to show you if you’ve been envious, jealous, resentful, or begruding toward your fiancé or others. Take time to write down instances when you have been if you can remember them. Invite God into your heart to place His healing balm in your life, wedding plans, and marriage.
V – Vent negative emotions in a constructive way.
Go to God first in prayer. Spend time in the Scriptures. Talk to your fiancé or your female friends only when you’re calm and right with God first.
E – Evict envy from your heart by replacing it with contentment, joy, love, and peace.
Keep an eternal perspective in mind. For as much time as you spend talking about wedding details, spend time talking about and planning for your marriage. As you grow closer to each other, allow your love to take roots and deepen. Spend time together, devote energy toward one another, and seek God’s love together. Pray that your love would be holy, blameless, and pure before the Lord.
1 Corinthians 13:4 says, “Love does not envy…” So instead of sleeping with one eye open… which will result in many sleepless nights – Let go of envy! Live contently! Love unconditionally!
This is Day 3 of the ½ marathon blogging challenge from the CMBA. For the first 13 days in October, you will get a nonstop taste of my writing. To see the official rules, click here. To see other CMBA bloggers’ posts, click here.
I’d love to hear from you…
How do you deal with envy? What strategies do you use during stressful times to remain content, peaceful, and loving? If you’re already married, share some of your wedding planning stories! Did you struggle with envy?