Wendy and I went to a marriage weekend with Zoë and Evan this weekend.
They are just barely through their first year.
But we are never past the point of needing to be reminded of things that we have dealt with and then grown past. Because these little foxes have a way of creeping back into the vineyard, and spoiling the vines.
One thing that was discussed was the problem of having expectations of what this marriage would be like according to our premarriage experiences.
My mind took off.
Later in the day, I asked Wendy, “Do you remember when I started helping you cook dinner? I know I didn’t at first, in the early days, but I honestly can’t remember when that changed.”
She couldn’t either.
When I was a kid (I was really self-absorbed) dinner was on the table when we heard the call, “Supper is ready!” That’s just how it was. We didn’t go into the kitchen, pick up a plate, spoon portions onto our plate, get a glass, pour milk, carry it to the table, sit down and eat.
We came to the table, sat down, and, after Dad prayed, ate.
I don’t even remember ever getting seconds. Or even asking for seconds.
Maybe that is why I was such a glutton at family reunions.
But, I never questioned the system.
Mom cooked dinner.
Dad cooked breakfast.
And when I asked Dad to cook my eggs a certain way, and to cook me two extra pieces of bacon for my traditional bacon sandwich school lunch, he always did. I don’t have any memory of how he handled my two brothers’ and my sister’s breakfast.
I told you, I was self-absorbed.
So, I probably carried that expectation into the marriage.
We never discussed it! I don’t remember when it changed, but, looking back, I guess I rolled with it.
I do remember one time, in the very early days with Wendy, asking what we were having for dinner.
She told me.
“Uhmmm, I’m not sure I like that,” I said.
Without hesitation or even looking my way, she said, “Well, that’s what we are having.”
I learned a very valuable lesson that day.
Turns out she is a very good cook.
Also turns out, I am not a bad sous chef.
Although, neither of us can remember when that happened.
There was the time I tried to cook dinner for her on Mother’s Day one year.
But…that is another story.
March 2, 2015
REMEMBER THE OLD JOKE
How many Vietnam vets does it take to change a light bulb?
YOU WOULDN’T UNDERSTAND! YOU WEREN’T THERE, MAN!
For the last few days, I have been in conversations with relatives and friends who have been telling me about “white privilege” and about how many of our problems in this country are directly related to the deeply ingrained ideas of the privileged white race, because we haven’t suffered in the same way as everyone else. We don’t necessarily have to think we are privileged, it is just ingrained within us because we were.
I understand the argument, but something inside me is thinking that this is not what is wrong.
I am moving toward 64 now, and I can remember when we were not as divided as we are today.
We are constantly being challenged to choose a side, fight for some group, stand up for someone’s rights.
I’m not saying that this is wrong.
But it is not changing things.
Now, I am a “privileged white guy” and what I say will probably not make a difference, but, for a while now, I still have the right to speak, though maybe not for long.
The world will always have some oppressed class. Always has, always will. Evil does that, and we have evil among us, growing stronger by the second.
Evil causes racism, evil causes violent response to racism, evil divides people, evil convinces people that God doesn’t exist, evil tells me that I am better than you, evil tells people that God does exist, but that you cannot trust Him.
Evil doesn’t care if it contradicts itself.
Evil only wants to prevent good.
When oppressed people respond to the world in the power of the life of God hidden inside them, instead of responding in their natural inclination to fight back and to punish their enemies, the world begins to change.
Our world is more divided today than yesterday.
You are being asked to choose your side.
When your friend chooses a different side, you lose your friend.
If you are one of the “born again believers” whose life has truly changed, try this. Lift up your eyes, see who God is placing in your path today, and engage them in conversation, get to know them, no agenda, no judgment.
The only LIGHT, that you have is His light.
There is something really good about light.
Darkness cannot resist it.