Last week, my husband followed up my gut-wrenching post with some gut-busting laughter, and it sure had me singing a new tune.
“Christie, do you remember that time when you REALLY WERE pushed out of the nest?” he asked as he gave me his sheepish grin and his giggling blue eyes that have held my heart and my future since the 8th grade.
“Remember? How could I EVER forget?” I wrestled with a smile, but it won out. That’s all he had to say to turn my frown upside down.
In honor of upcoming Father’s Day, I’ll share how I clearly showed my adoration and love for the future dad of our precious little chicks. Ten years ago, we were newlyweds when Damon encouraged me to attend a small group bible study with him that included several married couples and singles.
About the third visit, I was just settling in. Almost. And then it happened. At the close of the bible study, the leader threw a curve ball that nearly knocked me off the couch.
He said, “I think it’s time for a few timid birdies to be pushed out of the nest,” as he pulled out his guitar. “Tonight we’re going to end in prayer a bit differently. Instead of simply taking turns praying aloud for one another (which I was JUST warming up to, by the way), we’re going to instead take turns SINGING OUR PRAYERS ALOUD to whoever we feel led to pray for. But let’s make sure we cover everyone.”
Gulp. SAY WHAT?! I didn’t get softly pushed out of the nest. I got waylaid. Literally shoved out of a ten story tree to fall splat on the pavement of pure embarrassment.
My heart pounded and sent roaring waves crashing through my ears. No he DIDN’T! This CANNOT be happening. Where’s the door, how close am I? Damon can hitch a ride home.
I tried to stand up, but felt a little woozy. I thought, am I on a merry-go-around or is this room spinning?
One by one. The solos began. Damon finished his song and he was done. Some woman sang over me, but I never heard it. She was in the choir, so I’m sure it was beautiful.
All I heard was blaring radio white noise in my ears the whole time. I broke out in pellets of sticky sweat on my forehead, and still couldn’t move, like when you’re bowled over on the floor with the stomach flu.
Finally, the leader said, “There’s still two people who haven’t sung yet, and it looks like Damon’s the only one who hasn’t been prayed for.”
Then the silent, stare-down and stand-off began. Me against him. The quiet, shy guy across the room, and this girl about to vomit all over the couch and her new husband. Dead silence.
Except for my mental monologue: “God, if you love me, you WILL save me–again. Surely, IF you loved me, you wouldn’t do this to me. Make that boy sing! Pleeeease God!”
Then the room stopped spinning, although my heart didn’t stop pounding. I knew what I had to do.
I heard the Holy Spirit’s soft whisper to my heart, “He’s YOUR husband. Will you leave him unprayed for? Obey me, and show your love for him–and me.”
And then I belted out in song, although Damon declared afterwards it was more like a rap song.
I can’t carry a tune, and really, it sounded more like I dropped every tune on my big toe as I let out painful squeals, like a shrieking cat darting across a room with a barking hound dog hot on its tail.
I chuckle now, though I still get red flushes of embarrassment as I replay the scene. Damon says it’s provided enough laughter for a life-time of marriage. He belly laughs each time we replay it like it just happened, and I love that the most.
It’s a good example of true love–and utter humiliation. Reminding me that in marriage and in relationships, we often have to go out on a transparent limb, swallowing buckets of pride, and considering others before ourselves.
And we have the greatest example of all. Jesus more than went out on a limb for us. He hung on a tree for us. Died for us. Rose for us. With a Heavenly Father who gave Him up FOR US.
What a Father’s Day Gift. It sure gives me something to sing about.
When has God shown you that He’s been with you through the laughter and the tears? Comment and sing it aloud here. 🙂
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Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10 (NIV)
Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2 (ESV)
And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Phill. 2:8 (ESV)