Rubies

 

See that girl?

One bitter cold October Friday night, as a newly minted High School senior, I was ecstatic at the prospects of my first school dance of the season.
“See that girl,” said my friend Leonard, “she’s really cute.”
“She” was a pretty and precocious sophomore, who was working the soft drink concession – which amounted to a big tub of ice water with cans of soda floating about.

“Um..I’ll take a diet coke.”
“That’s at the bottom of the tub” she complained.
“I really want a diet coke” oblivious to her pain and discomfort, as well as my own impending future…
“Okay,” she said. Digging deeply and grabbing the can, she quickly turned around to shake it as rapidly as she could.
“Want me to open it?”
I should have know that wasn’t just a simple accomodation.
I soon realized why she had done the quick pirouette, and as rapidly as I nodded yes, she proceeded to spray me with the diet coke.
“Oh, sorry…”
She really is cute, I thought to myself, smart too, though a bid vindictive.

 

Thus began the love relationship of my life and five kids later to which we just celebrated 40? 48 years of marriage – our Ruby?Gemstone Anniversary.
Now, it wasn’t all wine and roses, and at around the eight-year mark, we could easily have broken up.
Our Catholic uprearing left us believing that divorce wasn’t an option.
It wasn’t long before we accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and that further confirmed that divorce wasn’t an option without some pretty serious infidelity issues to which we, fortunately, weren’t experiencing.
Changed immediately on the inside, we certainly weren’t changed that quickly on the outside and our marriage issues continued.
As I prayed and studied, and as we learned more and more, it struck me that if, as the Bible stated, I was the leader in my family, and if my family was falling apart, there was only one person to blame – the leader:
ME!
I mean, that’s what happens in the real world.
If BP spills oil into the ocean, we don’t hear about the guys who worked on the rig, we hear from the CEO of BP.
It’s the leader who is responsible.? How silly it would look if the CEO came out and laid the blame on his employees – no, he’s to blame, period.
I remember vividly speaking to Sharon about my new revelation, “Honey, I know that whatever problems we have in our marriage, I take responsibility, and I want to do whatever I can to turn things around.”
The reality was, I probably was to blame for most of our issues as Sharon was just responding to my poor leadership.
How did she respond? as you would expect lovingly, although in different words, “OK, show me the money…
Talk’s cheap, it’s action that counts.
And, I did, with God’s help and only with His help.
That realization and God’s help saved our marriage.
Rubies…

Proverbs 5:18 “…may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.”

Authors note: Rubies was originally written in 2010, this is the updated version but still retains the title “Rubies”.