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Find Hope in Admitting When We’re Wrong

“We can watch church on youtube tonight,” I said. “If it’s at 6 o’clock at home it will be 8 pm here (we’re enjoying a much-needed rest in Maui).  “That’s not right,” my husband responded. “Six o’clock there is 4 pm here.”

I looked at my watch, still set to California time, and at the car clock. Car clock – 6 pm. My watch – 8 pm. “No,” I insisted. “I’m looking at the evidence right here – the car clock and my watch.”

“No, it’s the other way,” said Don.

I did ask God to help me argue without being argumentative! Besides, I was only arguing because I was right. Don wouldn’t argue back.

Who’s Right – and Does it Matter?

I kept driving and all of a sudden it hit me. He was right!

“Honey, you’re right,” I blurted, startling him.

“About what?”

“About the time. You’re right. I just got it.”

“Well, I figured you’d get it at some point and there was no point arguing.”

I laughed. “And I was arguing because I was so sure I was right!” There was such freedom in admitting my mistake and asking his forgiveness, then laughing together because our conflict really was so silly. (


Today another situation came up. I didn’t think he had clarified a detail clearly enough in a phone call to California. I stated what I thought, and he said “No, I think he understood what I meant.” I didn’t continue, but it took me awhile to let it go internally.

So often my husband is right, and I end up apologizing. Even if he’s wrong, we’ll deal with it. Scripture tells me to respect and honor my husband.

Respect or Argue? Your Choice

So I had a choice to make. Would I argue for what I thought was right (again), or would I respect him and let it go?

Obviously, there are situations where one spouse can’t let something go. If the plane has to make an emergency landing, someone has to say “We’re going out that chute – NOW!” Wisdom requires a choice, a decision, and one may have to insist on his or her way for the good of all.

But in smaller issues, how much difference does it really make who’s right and who’s wrong? What’s the worst that can happen, and is that “worst thing” reparable? See

Swordfish Saga

I remember being in Mexico with my late husband, Jerry. He wanted to buy a carved ironwood swordfish that was at least two feet tall. I couldn’t imagine how we would get it onto the plane and home. I grumbled and complained until a friend said, “Carol, if he buys it, it’s his problem. Let him handle it.” I did, and we took that swordfish home!

I tend to have a bit of OCD, part of my recovering perfectionism. I want to cross all the ts and dot all the i’s. But if we miss one here or there, is it more critical to be right, or to maintain harmony in our marriage?

Scripture has a lot to say about the relationship of husband and wife. This verse, while written to the Church, is meaningful to me right now relative to our marriage:

Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude. I Peter 3:8

Many of us women tend to be controllers and God calls us through His strength to release control and rather respect and honor our husbands.

How does Humility Fit?

So even on vacation we deal with who’s right and who’s wrong, and whether or not we (I) will respond in humility.

Isn’t it great that in God’s mercy, when we confess our sins and accept what Jesus Christ did in taking the penalty for our sins on the cross, God sees us through the sacrifice of Christ. I still struggle. As the apostle Paul said,

I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate…

I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that…makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 7:15, 21-25a

Do you think it’s easier to admit you were wrong, or to ignore the issue and hope it passes? Why or why not?


  1. Laura Bennet says:

    Great post. I completely relate. I’m learning to let things go (although sometimes it takes me a bit to let go internally!), and I’ve learned that there is more freedom in apologizing when I’m wrong than hoping it will pass.

    1. Carol Loewen says:

      I agree, Laura. Admit, confess, and move on in freedom rather than holding that little corner of “rightness” (assumed) in our hearts. I appreciate your comment. Thank you, and blessings!

  2. Edie says:

    I have seen church people get very argumentative over the silliest trivial things eg. how to sing Go Tell It on the Mountain !?? So that it will be recognized by the church congregation. How many ways can you actually sing that song? My point is this: the person who started this argument dropped out of the worship team. Just what Satan wants. So now the rest of us are all feeling terrible about this incident and again. That’s a plus for the enemy. A completely unnecessary argument gone “south”. A very good lesson for all. Sometimes it’s better not to say too much

    1. Carol Loewen says:

      I’m so sorry for this situation you face, Edie. I pray resolution will come. Jesus’ whole purpose was redemption – redeeming us from our sin, redeeming our relationships, redeeming our words and actions. Thank you for sharing this. And yes, sometimes it is better to say less!! Thanks for your comment.

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