Pastor John Gray and his wife Aventer had a real conversation about the effects the coronavirus is having on their relationship during quarantine on Red Table Talk with Jada Pinkett Smith.
Pastor Gray shared that he’s learning to appreciate who is wife is during the pandemic.
“And that for me is the biggest revelation. I think Aventer, she’s had a consistent role in this marriage, while I tried to figure out what my role was. That’s not just in a marriage. I’m talking about as the man. I have been forced into intimacy over the last four weeks. And when Willow said, ‘you can’t spell divorce without C-O-V-I-D,’ well what I think is that I don’t think people are willing to divorce because of these four weeks. I think truth is being presented and we’re finally revealing and being revealed for who we actually are,” he said.
“There’s a distance between who we thought we were and who we actually know. And so for me, I can be honest to say that I didn’t understand all of the value and the gifts that my wife carried. Even if I could sympathize with her, I have not empathized. There’s a difference between sympathy and empathy. One is I feel sorry for you, you’ve done a great job. The other is, I’m putting myself in your shoes. And I have never stopped to say what does it mean to be a wife, a mother, an executive who’s doing all these different things and for me; I don’t know how to stay. I will travel a quarter of a million miles a year so for me, I know how to leave, not stay.”
“You neglected to say, just a woman first,” Aventer interjected.
“You said all those things, you see me as the wife, you see me as the mom, you see me as whatever it is that you need me to fulfill at that moment and I think the hardship that comes in marriage is, the tension comes in because you cannot reconcile that we singularly have so much value without all the other titles that we wear,” she said.