I’ll ignore yours if you ignore mine.

I remember many years ago Lori and I had been with a couple (I have no recollection of who) where the husband was doing something (I don’t recall what) that no one should put up with, and his wife clearly was pretending it was not happening.  When we left, I asked Lori “Why does she put up with that?” My bride wisely answered “Because he puts up with her _____”. She was right, they were each doing something that most folks would not tolerate, and they seemed to have some unspoken agreement to ignore each other’s sin.

Since then I have seen this many times. It’s gotten to the point that when I see a husband or wife tolerating something, I start to wonder what their spouse is tolerating. Granted there are other reasons for putting up with something (from real love to abject fear) but a conspiracy of not discussing each other’s bad habits, wrongs, sins, and so on seems to be far from uncommon. It’s often not as clear or extreme as the first case of this I was aware of – it can be very small things. However, the conspiracy is the same – each chooses to ignore something in return for the same.

How about you? Are you putting up with something you don’t like because it gets her to ignore something you do? Is it worth it? I mean is it REALLY worth it? Would you be happier if you each stopped whatever it is you are each doing? Maybe more importantly, would you both be better off if you each stopped?

6 Comments on “I’ll ignore yours if you ignore mine.

  1. I believe there is a Scripture that says something about this – yes, it’s Proverbs 19:11 – “Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.” There are times when it is good to overlook the sins of others, and there are times to confront. This is why our personal time with the Lord is vital to our growth both personally and as a couple. He leads us into all Truth helping us to know when it is “time to speak” or “time to refrain from speaking”.

    Your point is clear though – I have often thanked God I wasn’t married to so and so because of their way of doing things that would drive me crazy! Then, the thought turns and I realize they are most likely thinking the same of me. LOL!
    .-= Tom and Debi Walter – The Romantic Vineyard´s last blog ..Love Hopes All Things =-.

  2. I agree completely with the post and it’s probably more prevelent than you point out. Unfortunately, it also has an undercover name: Tolerance. It’s sad that the world and to some extent the church has influence marriages to ingore flaws in the name of the virtue of tolerance (I know it isn’t a real virtue, but it goes for one). It even makes it sound good.

    I think the biggest area you see this in is our entertainment. I think the whole “Guy Film” and “Chick Flick” dicotomy largely came out of this. These movies are often morally reprehensible but are seen as acceptible because they appeal to our basic vices as men and women. We tolerate them because our significant other says they them.

    I also don’t think an offense is really related to a sinful act. The offense in this scripture is something personal and not necessarily sinful. In other words, it means don’t get offended at everything, especially if it’s insignificant. We’ve all met people like this. We should all be offended by sin, although it isn’t always our duty to confront everyone. Our spouse on the other hand, that is our God given duty.

  3. I am currently writing a document on this as God has led me to it, and the even BIGGER word that this falls under is: COMPLACENCY. We are so complacent in our routines that we are failing to learn, allow ourselves to be tested by avoiding issues, and allowing ourselves to slowly fall apart on the inside. The Bible says that “…the complacency of fools will destroy them”, and this is exactly what is happening. Read in Revelations about the churches of Sardis and Laodicea and see how churches as a whole can become complacent and God’s warning to them as well. We need to WAKE UP and begin to allow God to work in our lives and share this warning with others.

    Thanks for this post – the message is far more reaching within so many people than we know. Only by shedding God’s light of Truth on it will it be uncovered.


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