“We Are On the Same Team”

Let me paint the picture for you.

It’s late in the day, the witching hour for parents with young children. The kids are rebelling against the “green stuff” on their plates, claiming that if they have to eat something of that color, then Skittles has a lovely variation that fits the bill.

It’s been a long day at work, full of copy machine jams, meetings that went 30 minutes too long, emails, and over demanding bosses.

It’s been an equally long day at home with school pickups, homework assignments, potty training, piano lessons, and preparation of the aforementioned “green stuff.”

In short, everyone is ready to snap, including mom and dad. It seems inevitable that someone is leaving that table in tears, their emotional nose bloodied by a well placed verbal jab. My wife has learned a helpful phrase to pull me through such times, when she knows that my nerves are frayed to the breaking point:

“We’re on the same team.”

That’s easy to forget during the witching hour, when baths have to be taken, dishes have to be done, and everyone is a little overextended from the day. It’s during the witching hour that, in my selfishness, I can easily convince myself that I stand alone. That the children have conspired against me to make my life harder. That my spouse doesn’t understand the burdens and pressures of my life. That I am a lone ranger in the house.

But I’m not. And my wife reminds me I’m not.

“We’re on the same team.”

Suddenly I realize my foolishness. There is no nefarious motive behind the request to help with the dishes. There is no evil intent behind the request to bathe the kids.

“We’re on the same team.”

God has joined us together in this fight – the fight for our home, for order, for the extension of grace. And what God has joined together, no man should separate. Least of all me. But that’s exactly what I’m trying to do when I firmly assume my status as the nightly martyr.

Remember, husbands. Remember, wives: We’re on the same team. You’re not being internally and subversively sabotaged. Remember it, and tell it to each other. Feel the weight begin to lift. Look back at the paranoia with which you have been afflicted. Believe in the good intentions of your spouse.

Now you’re ready. Not alone. Together. For God has given us the gift of each other.

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