By: Ginny Luedeman
January 13, 2003
CS Sentinel

I loved the old typewriter I bought at a yard sale. I displayed it several ways--in front of the fireplace, as a holder for dried flowers, and even as a bookend. I thought it was a great conversation piece.
But not everyone in the family thought it was so wonderful. Returning home from shopping one day, I saw my husband heading out the front door with my beloved typewriter in his hands.
“Where are you going with that?” I demanded.
“This old thing has bothered me for years,” he said. “I’m putting it in the trash, where it belongs.”
I grabbed hold of the typewriter and said he had no right to dispose of my things. He maintained that it was his home, too, and he had a right to get rid of this “ugly old thing.”
We stood in the doorway clutching the typewriter…and our self-righteous positions. We were so angry, you’d have thought we hated each other. And as overblown as it may now seem, the words incompatibility and divorce barged into my thoughts, and I told my husband what I was thinking. To my horror, he said a divorce might be just the right thing.
No unresolved conflicts had led up to this confrontation--no angry words, no fights, no friction. Out of the blue, for no apparent reason, we were suddenly enemies.
I believe the suddenness of these feelings made it easier for us to get a grip on ourselves. Hate, anger, opposing wills, usually move into relationships subtly an slowly. And they dim the love we feel for each other. But circumstances can never take away the nature God has given us. A loving nature is inherent in God’s children, always ready to look for what God is seeing about His creation. When clouds hide the sun, we can still find it if we go up high enough. So, too, the happiness and love God gives us are permanent, and my husband and I had the right to this lasting love in our relationship. Our stubborn wills needed to be dissolved so that we could see more clearly what God was seeing about us.
As my husband and I stood in the doorway gripping that old typewriter, it suddenly occurred to both of us that we should go in the house and pray. And we did that, silently together--saying nothing for a good five minutes. Soon I found myself thinking about the good things in our relationship. The chapter titled “Marriage” in Science and Health, includes this sentence: “The good in human affections must have ascendancy over the evil and the spiritual over the animal, or happiness will never be won” (p. 61). There was so much that was good in our marriage. And I knew that the good was real and lasting because it was from God, who is the source of all goodness.
Many warm, comforting, healing thoughts began to come to mind. An amazing sense of peace and love came over both my husband and me, while the anger and hate we’d felt just melted away. We hugged each other, apologized--and forgot all about our dispute. We had both won. We’d both gotten our way. We’d both found what we wanted--a renewed feeling of pure and unselfish love. We felt like newlyweds. Our prayers hadn’t made God love us more. But prayer had opened our hearts, and we saw that God was Love and there all the time--loving us and causing us to love each other.
It’s been 20 years since our typewriter tug-of-war. And my husband and I have never had another hateful disagreement.
I kept the typewriter for a few more years before finally letting it go. But my husband and I have never let go of the love we found that day.

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Ginny Luedeman


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