Spoiler alert: You might want to read part 1 and part 2  and part 3 before you read on…

The day finally came. As I welcomed the builder into my bursting-with-potential kitchen, I could hardly keep from hugging him. He followed me about the house, listening to me babble on with my ideas, and then asked if my husband would be joining us. I said, “Oh, he’s heard me talking about this for years, now.”
Ken did come upstairs for the part that interested him–the cost. And that’s when the whole thing fell apart.
Ken kept saying, “I just need a bottom line. I want to be sure we’ve saved enough before we begin.” And the builder kept repeating, “It doesn’t work like that. The material costs fluctuate weekly, and there will be decisions that you make along the way which will greatly influence the cost. There are too many variables for me to give you a bottom line.” 
After several rounds of this same conversation, I could tell they were both getting frustrated. But not nearly as frustrated as I was. We had finally saved the money for an addition. We had a builder who wanted to take our money and build it. So, what was the problem?!
As we showed the man out, Ken told him we’d get back to him if we decided to go ahead. But I knew he wouldn’t be hearing from us.
Like I told the builder, I had been talking about this addition for years. But after years of me making noise about this, God started to show me something—something really ugly. I had been so pushy, contending for my idea, that I hadn’t even really considered what my husband wanted. Or what God wanted. 
You might be married to a man who loves to do a big home improvement projects. I am not. Why was I trying to make my husband someone he isn’t? Why couldn’t I just enjoy the godly leader God has given our particular family? He’s a good husband, who loves to please me. And he’s a good father, who wants to wisely provide for our future. I resolved to him lead–even if it meant that we might never have an addition to our little kitchen.
There’s a marriage secret I’ve learned (based on past blunders): The way you let your husband lead, is to stop doing the leading, yourself. So this is what I did. I stopped talking and pushing, and contending for my idea. I quieted myself, both inside and out, and I waited.
And one evening, after dinner, here is what he quietly said: “Do you think you could go online and see if there’s a house for sale—one that already has what you’re looking for?”
And so I did.
There was one and only one house in our elementary school district, which fit the criteria and our budget. I loved it! Within six weeks we had sold our house, and bought this new one. I got a bigger kitchen. Ken got to sign on a non-fluctuating bottom line. And the amount we had saved made up the exact difference in cost for the new house. It was the perfect happy ending. 
My biggest surprise, both in this story, and in marriage overall has been this: Submitting to my husband (which is the opposite of controlling him) makes me happy! Who knew? I thought there could only be a ‘happily ever after the addition’ ending to the story. But when I let my husband be the Prince Charming that he is, God wrote a surprise ending that was far more satisfying than anything I could have ever dreamed up.
The End. (Otherwise known as the prelude to the next chapter…)

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