Act as if those words don’t even exist in your marriage.
I’ve long been interested in Japanese culture. Various aspects of the culture appeal to me, yet some I don’t fully comprehend. One of the aspects that I find interesting is their language and how some words we have in English don’t exist in Japanese.
For example, “I miss you.” doesn’t have a direct translation into Japanese. Japanese people prefer to verbalize this emotion in a way that doesn’t carry a negative connotation. Instead, the closest equivalent in Japanese is aitai 会いたい (“I want to meet”), which focuses on looking forward to meeting again when one is apart.
Another example is the word “God.” The idea of a single “God” or any related phrase is virtually non-existent in Japanese. Instead, the Japanese will refer to a ” 大神様、(Ō-Kami-sami) or “god,” which is considered a “higher power.” The reason is that most Japanese believe in many gods.
Although I don’t follow this belief in many gods (there is one true God), I agree with the idea of not having a word in your vocabulary for something you don’t believe in. For instance, before my wife and I married, we discussed expectations, negotiables, and non-negotiables. One of the non-negotiables was saying the “D” word.
We still cringe at even mentioning the letter “D” to talk about this word. Writing about this now is challenging as I’d prefer to explain than write this word when discussing our relationship. We decided from day one that this idea of separating was never an option for us. Since this word doesn’t exist, we’ve never mentioned it, whether in jest or an argument.
This idea reminds us that in our marriage, there must be a healthy understanding and agreement of compromises, negotiables, and non-negotiables. Discussing these things brings clarity, understanding, and unity for moving forward together. Although this doesn’t mean we’ll always agree on everything, it does anchor our marriage on the things that matter most.
Therefore, it’s best to act as if certain words don’t even exist. If, however, those words are currently part of your vocabulary, commit to eliminating them. This approach is especially true if these words can potentially damage your marriage or relationship.
Answer and Journal the Following
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
Pray that your words be edifying and encouraging for your wife. Also, pray for the discipline to eliminate those words which can be damaging.
Meditate / Make It Real:
Contemplate and meditate on or memorize the passage. What is God saying to you? Then, determine what you will do with what you’ve learned.
Share / Show:
Share and show what you’ve learned with someone else.