‘Make everything according to the pattern I have shown you.’ Exodus 25:40 NLT
We focus on individual incidents, but the God of the big picture focuses on patterns. He determined twenty–four hours in each day, seven days in each week, four seasons in each year, two people in each marriage, etc. Birth is followed by infancy, childhood, youth, adulthood, old age. Imagine how different your life would be without these patterns! God created us to need patterned lives. Patterns provide predictability, and predictability provides comfort, control and security. Simply knowing that Saturday follows Wednesday helps you get through an exhausting work week. Many of our relational issues would be resolved if we paid less attention to our negative patterns and concentrated on establishing positive ones. Does this conversation sound familiar? The husband asks, ‘Why do you always bring things up just when I’m falling asleep? Can’t you find a better time?’ The wife returns fire: ‘There’s never a better time to get your attention!’ The use of words like ‘always’ and ‘never’ only intensifies the problem. Until you understand and change your patterns, you’ll forever be attempting to put out relational fires. Establishing a simple pattern of spending an hour or two together each week (date night?) assures your wife of a set time to be heard, and your husband an opportunity to listen when he’s alert and responsive. Patterns are God’s idea. The predictability and promise they bring help defuse reactive emotions and establish an environment where you both feel loved and valued!
SoulFood: Exo 13-15; John 1:43-51; Ps 131; Pro 26:7-9
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2014