We often deceive ourselves into believing that our actions only really affect ourselves. There really is no “secret sin”. When we are engaged in sinful behaviours, both our actions and interactions change. Whether your family is aware of the sin in your life or not, they are probably aware that you are somewhat “off” or that something is going on.
For example, there is a co-worker in your office that your wife does not like. Your wife feels this woman may have a crush on you, and is concerned that she may make advances if given the opportunity. She has asked that you refrain from having lunches with the person, as they always insist on having lunch together. Also, if there is a meeting, she would like the door to be left open, and other people present. You chuckle, as you feel that she is just jealous, but agree to the request. The co-worker, in your mind, is just a good friend.
The next day, the person comes into your office and closes the door. They say that they have something that they need to speak with you about privately. You know that your wife would not approve, but you don’t see the harm in it. You justify the meeting as its a private matter that they need to discuss and wouldn’t feel comfortable talking about with someone else in the room.
You come home, and your wife asks how your day was. Since she is aware that this person always insists on having lunch with you, she asks you how you handled the situation, concerned that the other person may have been hurt. You say that you took care of the situation, and there is nothing to worry about. She smiles, but secretly wonders if you are being truthful because something seems to be not quite right.
The next day, you are determined that things will be different. The co-worker approaches you again for lunch. You try to explain lightly why you are unable to have lunch with them, and they begin to cry saying that you don’t like them. Feeling bad, you retract your words, and end up having lunch with them anyway. You will just have to explain it to your wife.
You come home, and your wife asks about your day. You say things are fine, but in your answer, your voice goes up a bit in tone. Picking up on your discomfort, your wife asks you if anything is wrong or bothering you. You become angry at her for asking, and snap at her. She looks hurt and bewildered wondering why you are acting this way. She knows something is wrong because of your actions, and she suspects that you aren’t being truthful. She doesn’t want to ask, though, because she is fearful of what the answer might be.
Time goes by, and the interactions continue- unknown to your wife. You continue to lie to her. You say that there is no way that she could possibly know, and it’s just your secret. After all, nothing is going on, you are just friends, and your wife’s request is just unreasonable.
By now, your wife is convinced that something is up. She feels it in the pit of her stomach. Deep down, she feels your secretiveness is hiding an office affair. Being unable to stand the uneasiness inside of her, she makes a trip down to the office under the guise of a “surprise lunch”. When she arrives, she asks the receptionist to tell you that she is there only to be informed that you are at lunch with this co-worker. Her world comes crashing down… over a lie.
Sin comes in various forms. When we refuse to give sin up, it becomes habitual, and can tear a family apart. Janice Broyles will discuss what to do when your spouse refuses to change a behaviour that is damaging to your marriage. She will teach you about how to let go of control, and give the person up to God. Janice also addresses feelings of hopelessness over the situation, and how to feel more in control over your life without controlling your spouse.
This article and more, in our next issue of Faith Filled Family coming out October 26, 2017!