Obviously when you get married, there are some things you give up for your spouse. I am not saying it is all bad, and many pre-marital counselors and their cheery, happy guidebooks will try to tell you that “You aren’t giving up anything. You are replacing it with something better!” (SINGLE PEOPLE SKIP TO THE NEXT PARAGRAPH…Do not read any further here!) That’s a big old loaf of rotten, disgusting Bologna!
I am in NO WAY trying to say I am not 100% satisfied with my marriage. The lifestyle I now live versus my single life is no contest. I would choose to be married and have my amazing two kids every time if given the choice! Nothing wrong with being single. But I LOVE LOVE LOVE being Husband and Father.
But there ARE various activities, habits and hobbies that have to be cast away once betrothed. And all of them are not bad!!! Some can’t be replaced! I ADORE MY WIFE, but watching a college football game with her is NOT as enjoyable as when my roommate and I watched together. IT’S JUST NOT!
Go Ahead…start bashing me! “Insensitive, immature, pig of a man!”
Now…tell me I am wrong. YOU CAN’T!! Well, I guess you can, but you would be hedging.
On the flipside of the coin, you don’t only STOP doing certain things, but you also START doing things you would NEVER do if still single. Again, not all are bad things, but some tend to be…Less than Enjoyable. (that is as nice as I could put it, in case my gorgeous Bride decides to read this post. I love you, C.A.! You light up my life! You complete me. You are my Sunshine…my only Sunshine…etc., etc., etc.)
One of these concessions I have had to make is that we occasionally eat GREEN BEANS! Single me would never…ever…never think of PURCHASING the disgusting little things, much less purposefully and knowingly EAT them.
When I was younger, I couldn’t bear the thought of them. My parents would put a number on how many I had to eat before I could get up from the table. If the number was around 4 or 5, I would stack them all on a fork, close my eyes, and force down the vile nastiness. If the number was higher, I had another way to cope. I would wait them out. Sometimes for an hour. Then my Dad would get up and go about his business, leaving my Mom to stand post, glaring at me, saying over and over “You will NOT get out of that chair, young man, until every green beans is GONE!” And still I would wait. What would happen many times was she would start cleaning the table and going to the kitchen. We actually had one of the double-swing both ways doors that you now only see in some diners and on “The Andy Griffith Show.” Anyway, when she headed to the kitchen, I would then make those beans GONE, alright, just as she requested! I would grab them one at a time and launch them over and behind the china cabinet. This would go on for several beans, until I had it whittled down to one or two beans left, then I would stop chucking them and wait until she saw me eat the last two. You know, to prove I am an awesome kid…who took 2 hours to eat 12 beans.
I got away with this activity from about age 4 until 6. Then we moved. And one of the worst spankings/floggings/whoopin’s I ever got was when the movers came and moved that cabinet. Dried old hard beans. Various colors at this point. And some actually stuck to the wall where they were on display for all to see.
I still think the sore rear end was worth not having to ingest those despicable things.
Fast forward 30 years…there is my lovely wife. Her first trip to the grocery store as newlyweds, and guess what she proudly threw in the buggy, spending our hard-earned money on? I can’t even write it.
I MARRIED A GREEN BEAN EATER!!!!
The Word of God speaks several times about being unequally yoked…I am not sure if it is speaking to salvation, style of living, calling…perhaps it is speaking to those with different views of Green Beans! (that is a joke, people…relax)
So, still once every two weeks or so, after almost 8 years of marriage, we eat Green Beans. I tried to show her the error of her ways and reason with her…to no avail. I have grown to where they are tolerable. I still dislike them, and would NEVER choose them for myself, but if my wife and kids like them, then I can suffer for them. Ugh.
This past Tuesday, we had Chicken, Mac & Cheese, Orange Slices….and Green Beans for dinner. No problem. There was enough that I liked that I could handle it! I tolerated the Green Beans first, then reveled in eating the other items.
I always take the leftovers to lunch with me the next day, if we have any. My wife or I put them into a cool 3-Sectioned Rubbermaid container (they should pay me for the free advertising). There were enough of each item to take all 4 items. So in the large section we put the Chicken and Mac, then a small section for the Green Beans and Oranges. Now that is a good lunch!!! And free-ish!
Lunch time rolled around Wednesday, and I took the meal out of the fridge, and ate the Oranges! Can’t heat those up!
Then put the container in the microwave. Smelled so good because of the Mac&Cheese!!! Then headed to my desk.
My first bite was a piece of the breaded Chicken, and….it was soggy. It was completely thoroughly covered…IN GREEN BEAN JUICE!!! I wanted to hurl! So, I frantically picked up the other 3 pieces, only to find the same thing…then the worst thought hit me…NOT MY MAC AND CHEESE TOO!!!! My Mac&Cheese was sopping wet, soaking…nay floating in the putrid liquid. WHY ME?!?! The only thing NOT ruined by the Green Bean juice was the Green Beans!!!
Regardless, I ate it all, and it was not fun. The delicious Mac&Cheese I had been so proud to have was shot. The tasty Chicken that would have been the envy of desk-workers across the globe was tainted!
BY GREEN BEAN JUICE
Later, this got my strange brain to thinkin’. What about my life? What about my walk with Christ?
Have I kept myself from being tainted by the world? Or am I soggy with the worldly life? There are so many things in this life that would do the same thing to us that the GB Juice did to my lunch. Make us disgusting. Gross.
And not just to ourselves!! Most of us when we realize things are off, or we have sin and vileness in our lives, instead of making it right with God, we want to make sure it is hidden from our neighbors FIRST!! How flipped is that?
So many people, including myself, want to see Father as so loving and forgiving and over-looking, if I may coin a phrase. We want to focus on the fact that He sees past our faults. We love to pull out “as far as the east is from the west.” We roll around in it and make it our anthem…
What about where the Word tells us we can make Him SICK? We can become so awful and disgusting in our lives that we make GOD become nauseated! That is a HEAVY THOUGHT. WOW…that we can make the Creator of all things ILL by our lives…yet, we seem to be totally ok with it.
We find ways to alleviate the guilt.
We can reason away our lifestyles and claim to be “in the world, but not of it” all we want as we become more and more saturated with the worldview that makes GOD WANT TO THROW UP!
Let’s all take the time to look at our lives. Are we covered in sins that we have become accustomed to, not realizing how sick we are making Father? Are our lives, that we may have told ourselves are up to par and holy, actually nauseous before our Heavenly Father???
Time to get cleaned up!