Monday, April 12, 2010

Pay Attention

Marriages are funny on TV. Nothing like a stupid wife (like on I Love Lucy) for a laugh. Nothing like a stupid husband (on every other show) for even more laughs. We laugh because it is someone else. When it is in our relationship we want to cry.

I have seen marriages break up for this cause. I have seen wives outstrip their husbands in their interest in deeper things. Those husbands counted on the universally acknowledged fact that there is something manly about not knowing stuff.

I Samuel 25
3 Now the name of the man was Nabal [ed. the name means “fool”], and the name of his wife Ab'igail. The woman was of good understanding and beautiful, but the man was churlish and ill-behaved; he was a Calebite.

I have seen husbands living with the hell of the unteachable wife. Not that the woman is not bright. In some cases she is really smart, just uninterested in knowing or understanding. She uses her smarts to build what matters just to her.

Proverbs 11
22 Like a gold ring in a swine's snout
is a beautiful woman without discretion.

What would I recommend? A couple that mutually considers what they each retain from life’s observation will 1) find each other more interesting and 2) sidestep folly (since it lurks in ignorance) and 3) make gains in their standing in the broader community when their knowledge come to benefit others. As an extra, 4) the couple becomes better friends.

Each of these shore up a marriage. When you are not interesting to each other, when folly makes you both look stupid with some regularity, and when 20 years leaves you with no reputation worth remarking on, the word "tranquil" is replaced by the word "dull". Those closest to you, your spouse and your children, will think you dull first. Dull parents do not inspire the children to adopt the methods or beliefs of those parents. Dull Spouses may find that their partners will walk away because they have found another person, someone with a pulse. Or they may just want to get away from the room you are in before you revisit that limited inventory of ideas, or stories, or questions that you have used for years as your talking points.

If you seek to be tranquil and want it to be obviously not dull, realize that what you retain as knowledge in life will have at least four qualities.
1] the quality of the thing known.
2] the quality of that thing's known effect.
3] the quality of 1 and 2 relationship, in other words, why known and why efficacious.
4] the quality of increase.

Proverbs 4:7
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom,
and whatever you get, get insight.

1 comment:

Thomas Banks said...

Good words.