Suffering but Not Silent

Of all the grinds that erode our peace, none is more nagging, more draining, more painful than disharmony at home. Sarcastic infighting. Stinging put-downs. Withering stares. Deafening silence. Volatile explosions of anger. Occasionally, emotional brutality and physical abuse. A television blaring in the living room. A stack of dirty dishes sitting in the sink. Doors slammed shut. Desperate feelings of loneliness. Perhaps even dark clouds of fear and dread. Sadly, some of those phrases may describe where you live. If so, you are not alone. In fact, Solomon and other wise men of Israel knew the sorrow and heartache of domestic discord. They wrote from personal experience:

A foolish son is destruction to his father,
And the contentions of a wife are a constant dripping. (19:13)

It is better to live in a desert land
Than with a contentious and vexing woman.
There is precious treasure and oil in the dwelling of the wise,
But a foolish man swallows it up. (21:19–20)

The north wind brings forth rain,
And a backbiting tongue, an angry countenance.
It is better to live in a corner of the roof
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman. (25:23–24)

These writers were men, so they naturally wrote from the husband’s perspective. Even so, the principles work both ways, for both men and women who are trying to maintain a peaceful, productive household. As any soul-weary wife can attest, “It is better to live in a corner of the roof than in a house shared with a contentious man.”

It is possible that you have gotten to the point where you look for excuses to be away from home, or you try to keep yourself occupied in some other part of the house as much as possible. Perhaps you wonder what can be done to restore harmony, to make things different. You may think that change is impossible, but I have good news: it is not. The remedies for domestic disharmony are neither easy nor automatic. But you do not have to merely endure in silence.

From Living the Proverbs by Charles R. Swindoll, copyright © 2012. Reprinted by permission of Worthy Inspired., an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

A Reason to Hang On

The heavy burdens of life can make us feel like we’re sinking at times. The words of comfort and understanding on this page can ease your mind, restore your hope, and renew your faith