“Re-Finish”

From B:

I openly admit, I’m a procrastinator. If something needs done, I look for excuses to put it off till tomorrow.

Funny, I dislike that trait in other people. Ouch.

In the time Yvonne and I have married, we have moved 4 times. Each time I have moved certain pieces of furniture that were in decent shape, but were certainly not “Front Room Worthy.”

However a month or so ago, my beautiful wife asked me to take her to “Hobby Lobby”. We left with a buggy (shopping cart) full of craft items.

She said she wanted to “Re-finish those white shelves.”

Jake and Bailey each had a white shelf in their room in Asheville. When we moved north, there wasn’t enough space to put the shelves in their room. So, the shelves were left in the garage.

Yvonne has a way of seeing the end result in a piece, that I think is probably un-salvageable.

She sees what she wants to accomplish and determines to begin the project.

So, that visit to Hobby Lobby, she bought the paint, the brushes, sandpaper..everything she needed. But it started with the her vision.

I’m thrilled to watch her transform those unusable pieces of furniture into pieces of art!

When we lived in Asheville, she was working so hard and for so many hours a day that she barely could walk up the stairs most evenings, let alone work on projects.

So..I say “Hawney, paint, sand, scrape and fix-up whatever you want.”

See, like Y sees the finished project, God does too. He expects us to do we can do and then He will do what only He can do.

We must take the initiative to address past hurts, unresolved issues, or additive behaviors that are causing unneeded stress in our relationship- so that our marriage will be able to thrive.

A healthy marriage or relationship takes work and determination.

Buying the supplies to Re-finish those shelves weren’t enough- she had to apply labor to complete the task.

Having the “information” on how to make our marriage or relationship is not enough. We have to apply that information.

From Y:

I openly admit – I have developed a love for Pinterest. I get great recipes, helpful cleaning or organizing ideas. However, recently, I spend more time looking at refinished furniture ideas. I used to “refinish” things all the time. That was before I lost all work/life balance for a while. When I came on board with Banana Republic, I remember someone telling me that now I could have a hobby again. Well, guess what? I really am to the point of being able to do something I like to do during my spare time.

During the moving process, Bryan kept asking me if I wanted to keep this or that piece of furniture that was in the garage or basement. I knew we needed to not tote these things across state lines again. But in the back of my mind, I knew the upcycling I wanted to do to them. I imagine he had difficulty wrapping his head around why we were moving these pieces that were beat up, ugly, old and had not actually been in our living space. However, he loaded them in the U-Haul and now they sat in our garage AGAIN.

A few weeks ago, I finally took some vacation time. I organized some more things and there are officially no boxes in the house at all ( just don’t go in the garage). That week Bryan took me to Hobby Lobby. Holy cow! It inspired me to start putting some of those Pinterest pages to work.

Bryan and Jake headed out on the bus for the weekend with SOQT and Bailey and I ended up in Home Depot. I had made a list of supplies I knew I needed. Once we got home, I dragged out an old pie safe ,that was half painted and missing the door, into the middle of the living room floor. I laid old towels underneath it and the makeover began.

First- attend to the holes with wood putty. That was pretty easy. Next, I referenced several ideas I had pinned on Pinterest and decided chalk paint was the direction I wanted to go ; along with adding some cool design to the inside with shelf liner and modpodged scrap booking paper. The painting was basically trial and error. The store did not sell chalk paint, so I made my own. The great thing was that if I made a mistake…. I just bought more sand paper. I used professional suggestions but if it didn’t come out the way I imagined I just sanded. I hadn’t put pressure on myself and none of my family even remembered I used to do this all the time anyway. No worries!

I worked on that cabinet every night the boys were gone. I was so encouraged by the progress one night I was up until 3am. I waited until it was almost done to send pictures to Bryan. I think he was shocked. He sent back all kinds of encouraging texts. I later found out he was so proud he showed all the guys on the bus my picture updates. That melted my heart…

And started me thinking. How much “stuff” do we pack around for years saying to ourselves ” I’ll deal with it this time or that time”? Or how many issues do we just not do anything about and leave them in the basement of our relationships and before you know it the issue seems hopeless to restore? Or ( if you’re like me) you get to the point that you are disappointed in yourself for not doing something about it and you just chuck it out so you don’t have to look at it anymore ?

I have a self protect mechanism that tends to push things in and down ( much like the basement). That is not necessarily a good trait. I roll it over on my mind, think of the things I want to say and then pray for an opportunity to address it. If I don’t ; it will come out eventually. The more unresolved issues that are not dealt with or are swept under the rug, the larger the crack becomes and more opportunity for the enemy to get in the middle of your issue.

I have learned that the way your feelings are received will determine your willingness to be completely honest about how you feel. If you are ignored, dismissed, belittled, ridiculed or yelled at in response to expressing how you feel, you probably will leave the issue in the basement. You are apt to not try and refinish it. You are also prone to grow bitter.

So, how do you respond when someone needs to discuss your relationship? That’s a question we all should ponder. Are you actively listening? Do you take it personal and become defensive rather than genuinely wanting to understand? Do you want to refinish the places in your heart that are hurt or help someone else with theirs? How you bring it up or how you respond tells your true heart. It tells your love for the other person. It can be painful. I’m sure sandpaper doesn’t feel that great. If you make a mistake….you can back up and try again. You don’t have to get it right the first time. You just have to believe that the work will make it beautiful….. better than the condition before you invested the time.

From both:

1) Discussing issues shows love. Be mindful your approach. Be sincere and non confrontational.

Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy. (Proverbs 27:6 CEVUK00)

2) Surround yourself with a same sex Godly mentor who has your spiritual well being at heart. Don’t violate your marriage by sharing intimate details with members of the opposite sex.

Be friends with those who are wise, and you will become wise. Choose fools to be your friends, and you will have trouble. (Proverbs 13:20 ERV)

3) Do not have “yes” people who tell you what you want to hear. We all need those who love us enough to tell us the truth and call us out when we are wrong. You should want those people in your life.

The righteous should choose his friends carefully, For the way of the wicked leads them astray. (Proverbs 12:26 NKJV)

4) Be a listener.

The wisest thing you can do is to keep quiet and listen to my argument. (Job 13:5, 6 CEVUK00)

5) If the issue is with your spouse, speak or respond with love and respect.

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous, it does not brag, and it is not proud. Love is not rude, is not selfish, and does not get upset with others. Love does not count up wrongs that have been done. (1 Corinthians 13:4, 5 NCV)

Before discussing or sharing your heart, always pray that God will present an opportunity and that shelvesshelvesyour spouse will receive it in love.

The Hutsons 2013