When I was 20 years old, a member of my family accused me of stealing $100 from them. What happened was this person had misplaced their own money, but out of their desire to place blame on someone else, they minced no words as they called me a thief. I remember, at the time, being so hurt that they would even consider that I could do such a thing.
It is very painful to be falsely accused. My heart was shattered as I realized that someone had such strong assumptions about my own integrity (or lack thereof), that they didn’t even ask me if I had seen the money, but rather they immediately charged me with a crime. To them, I was found guilty before the trial date was set.
Do I ever do that to my husband?
Do I ever assume the worst about my husband? Do I rush into judgment and automatically assume he is guilty?
Do I maturely discuss with him any questions and hesitations I have or do my words declare that I have already arrested and convicted him?
Sadly, the latter!
I wasn’t aware that this was my skewed outlook until late last week. My husband had worked an overnight shift, so when he came home in the morning, he retreated to the basement bedroom (where there are no windows) to get a few hours sleep. About 20 minutes after he said goodnight to us, I crept down the dark stairs, at my son’s request, to retrieve the trains from the playroom. I heard an “interesting” sound coming from the bedroom, and I immediately jumped to the wrong conclusion. I felt sick to my stomach as I heard, what I thought to be, “inappropriate” sounds. I wasn’t sure how to handle this situation as we had never encountered it in our marriage before. So, I quickly barged into the room to find… my dear, sweet husband sitting in bed spitting pistachio shells into an empty glass Starbucks bottle. That was the noise I had heard. While he was relaxing in bed, munching on pistachios, and ejecting the shells into a bottle… I wrongly assumed he was sinning.
Talk about an assumption made about his integrity: I had falsely accused him of adultery of the heart!
Perhaps this would have been warranted if my husband had a frequent history of, or present struggle with, lustful thoughts, but (thankfully) he does not. He is honest with me when I have questions/insecurities and he stays proactively on guard against temptation. For example, his habit is to not take his phone, or any form of media/electronics, into the basement room when he sleeps after long, overnight work shifts in order to remove the temptation from ever taking place (And I knew this about him before I made those horrible accusations).
My husband responded with a sweet smile and yet I felt horrible. I kept wondering: why did the false accusation come to my mind? Was it from Satan (I was framed) or was it because, as a marriage blogger, I receive several e-mails a month from wives who are hurting over their husband’s lack of self-control? Likewise, as a blog reader, I have read many posts regarding this very struggle for men. Had I assumed my husband was like the others? Was he guilty simply because he was a man (gender profiling)?! Or maybe it was just my sleep deprived, hormonal, self. I had been up the night before with restless children and am 18 weeks pregnant. Perhaps the hormones and sleepiness made my ears play tricks on me and clouded my judgement (an insanity plea)?!
Either way, what I did was wrong. I found my husband guilty before the trial had even begun. I did not approach him with kindness nor did I give him the benefit of the doubt. Instead, I made up a scenario in my head and quickly believed it as truth. I didn’t pray; I didn’t think; I simply accused.
Ever since that moment, my heart has been incredibly heavy. I recalled, in painstaking detail, the time I was accused of stealing money, and I couldn’t believe I did that same, selfish, thing to my own husband! I not only falsely accused him, but I misjudged the character of my life-partner. The facts I know about the man I have been sharing a bed with for almost a decade (that he is a deacon at our church, a husband whose heart hungers for the Word of God, a Christian man who meets with other Christian men, regularly, for accountability, etc.) were all instantly dismissed by my own assumptions. While I am not saying Jason is above temptation or failure in this area, I had no previous reasons to make such a quick presumption in which I called his integrity into account.
My husband has shown amazing grace in this situation, but yet, I have been so convicted over the state of my own heart. I, so often, find my husband guilty before I have had time to gather the facts and pray over what is in front of me. Last week’s situation was just the tip of the iceberg. I have been doing an internal investigation, and am uncovering the stark reality that I rarely give my husband the benefit of the doubt.
When he says something that I take personally, I do not assume he didn’t mean to hurt my feelings, but I falsely accuse him of being insensitive. When he falls straight to sleep at night, after talk earlier in the day of intimacy, I charge him with not being attracted to me rather than having grace and assuming he forgot or accepting the reality that he could be incredibly exhausted. When my husband runs errands on his day off, I criticize that he wants to avoid our family rather than acknowledging the truth that he has things to do that are accomplished faster without the children around. When my husband forgets to tell me something, I don’t recall all the times I forget to share something with him, but instead, I accuse him of intentionally keeping things from me. When my husband is eating a handful of pistachio, I mistake that sound as an unspeakable act.
I am a wife who is guilty of making false accusations against her husband!
Sometimes, my indictments remain only in my thoughts; while other times, I act upon or vocalize them. Either way, it is I who am guilty. I am not a graceful wife who is creating a peaceful home for my husband because, deep down, I have already declared that he guilty until proven innocent. This should not be! When I have a preconceived notion that my husband is in the wrong then it breeds suspicion and hinders intimacy. I need to develop greater trust in both the Lord and my husband. I need to reign in my thoughts and gain some maturity: to believe the best about my husband rather than assuming the worst. What I need most is the guidance of the Holy Spirit — to be more prayerful and less emotional — Oh, how I need Jesus.
Do you ever falsely accuse your husband? How do you rectify that flaw in your own life?