67: True Home

67: True Home

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Wives

True Home

By Jennifer Cardine

Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.

~Proverbs 25:24

I had worked my way through college and settled into the life I imagined for myself by my mid-twenties: a happy marriage, a decent job and a new baby. Then my husband and I decided to invest in real estate and bought a small house with an affordable mortgage payment. Our little family moved into the house, and then I got pregnant again just as the economy crashed. Suddenly, our mortgage was bigger than our home’s newly diminished value, and our family was bigger than our home. We were stuck in a house that we did not want and could not afford to leave.

As I drove our toddlers to a play date, I was feeling sorry for myself. I lowered the radio volume, sighed and reached out to God. “I don’t know what to do, God. I don’t know how to be content in our house. I don’t know how to be thankful. Please help me.”

I looked at my wedding rings, glimmering in the sunlight as my fingers wrapped around the steering wheel. They contained a sapphire my future husband had slipped on my finger with a smile and a question, and a line of diamonds he used to promise forever. I thought about my parade of blessings: the sacrifices my husband had made so I could spend my days with our children; how little he complained and how cool he was when I did; the great love he had for me and how that love nurtured us through a three-year long-distance relationship; the exhale at the end of the day when he entered the house and helped carry the burden; the last bite of a shared dessert he always left for me.

I could only offer God a knowing smile when I recalled Proverbs 25:24: “Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.” I knew what my heart wanted — no, craved — and it was not a lovely home. I had what money could not buy. The economy might have been crashing but my relationship was booming.

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