Keep No Record Of Wrongs

Dear Lord and Father of mankind, Forgive our foolish ways.

–John G. Whittier, Hymn

            John and I were married only a short time before I discovered he had a habit of rolling up his sleeves when he went to work. He also wore two pairs of socks inside his construction boots. The trouble was that he tossed them into the clothes hamper that way. And I resented having to untangle them.

I made sure he heard about it. “Look at your shirt! It got washed and dried with the sleeves rolled up . . . now it’s permanent wrinkle!”

John promised to do better. Sometimes he did. Usually he didn’t.

For years it bothered me. Every time I folded our laundry I seethed. Things went on like this until my new Bible–a New International Version–arrived. The only first section I turned to was my favorite, I Corinthians 13. Here I read: “Love is patient, love is kind . . . it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. . .”

Keeps no record of wrongs! Wasn’t that just what I had been doing all these years? Adding up one tiny grievance after another until there was a whole mountain of resentment? I felt ashamed. I went in and stood by the washing machine and bowed my head and asked for forgiveness.

After that I was able to approach the task of rolling down John’s sleeves and pulling his socks apart as I would any normal household chore. It became an act of love.

And today is our 39th anniversary! Which John didn’t forget.

When I hold my tiny irritations up to Your light, Lord, I can see them for what they really are.

Author Unknown


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