The challenge: Once a week, for 10 weeks, choose one emotionally descriptive word that positively describes my wife.
- As a man, I broke through the boundaries of emotional simplicity and began to explore emotional complexity.
- This challenge forces me to positively define my wife. By doing this, I have to accept what I positively say to be true. Thus, it being written in black and white, the things I write become a permanent fixture here and most likely in the minds of the readers – including her.
- Growth. Always growth.
Here is week seven.
When anyone reads this week’s word, I am certain that their first reaction will be That’s not a positive adjective. I submit that the positiveness or negativeness of this adjective depends on one’s disposition and who the person speaking (in this case, writing) intends it.
Let me address first the question of the disposition of the person using the term. I like challenges. So long as the challenge is something that I can potentially surmount and move on to another, I revel in them. In point of fact, I grow bored in the absence of some form of challenge. Again, surmounting the challenge must be feasible, but so long as this is true, challenges keep me engaged and curious and interested. Remove the challenges and I grow bored and listless and disinterested.
The next thing that must be addressed is the question of how I mean the term. I mean it in the best possible sense. Challenges — like this ten week challenge — spur us on to better, faster, stronger, and so on (as the song goes). Challenges rouse us to become what we have not been in order to become what we otherwise could not.
Some of the challenges my wife presents to me are in the form of her doing something that reminds me that I ought to be doing likewise. She does things that are solely and exclusively to benefit me or some other person. This sort of challenge throws down the metaphorical gauntlet and bids me take it up and do more of what I ought to do.
Some of the challenges my wife presents to me are in the form of her being something that I ought to be. I have noted in previous weeks how her compassion reminds me that I ought to be more compassionate and her kindness does likewise. These sorts of challenge spur me to be what I ought. There is a reverse to this. There are times when the form of challenge she presents is to be what I ought because she is not, but that is not the focus of this post. The focus here is on those times when she challenges me to Godliness by Godly behavior; the times she nudges without nudging, merely by being or doing what God has commanded us to be and do.
I suspect that there will still be those who do not quite understand how being challenging can be a good thing. I leave it to better minds than my own to determine how that can best be explained.