Jabs Across the Dinner Table

It’s interesting what impressions you can get from listening to a few moments of conversation. You can see a glimpse of the person’s soul just by hearing how he or she talks at the dinner table.


Having guests over for dinner implies everyone is on their best behavior, wouldn’t you think?

This has definitely not been my experience. Wife and I have been guests at the dinner tables of many families, and the impressions we have had are shocking.

Some dinner tables are tense. The air is thick with unhealthy conflict and unresolved issues. The conversation reflects this, with the husband and wife exchanging jabs across the dinner table.

Nasty looks doesn’t cover it. Contemptuous body language is more like it!

It starts with the wife asking the husband to pass the potatoes, which he could do if he ever listened to her. Then the husband shoots back an insult about her inability to manage the household while he is out working all day.

It’s hard to enjoy a meal with conversations like this.

At these dinners, I can’t stop imagining the host couple throwing literary daggers at each other, each one aimed to kill. It’s beyond awkward — it’s awful.

This kind of behavior destroys marriages and damages families. When the home is not a safe place, and when God is not a part of the relationship, the husband and wife seek comfort elsewhere. They get validation from friends that the spouse is the one to blame, and they bring this contempt home to the dinner table.

It just makes me sad.

Contrast this with healthy, growing marriages rooted in faith in God. The husband and wife are not perfect, nor do they try to be. They are flawed humans. Pride is avoided, since that only creates problems. They love each other actively.

What would it be like to have dinner with a couple like this?

You can be sure there are no jabs flying across the table. You will instead find support, encouragement, and trust.

It’s so refreshing to be around couples like this. The conversation comes naturally, and the atmosphere is one of sincerity and companionship.

And daggers are nowhere to be found.

Let’s get personal. How would your friends feel after having dinner with you and your spouse? Energized, or drained?