I'll post some photos of my trip to San Francisco sometime soon (the best ones were taken by my 15-year-old nephew who had to tag along with his old aunts and mom because his dad had to take a trip north due to a family emergency, also some great shots by my youngest sister who loves taking pictures, which I do not. Never quite get the hang of it, or care enough to try), but for today, one quick story.
Yesterday, after dropping Thyrza off after the clinic run, I stopped by a fabric store. By the way, in downtown San Francisco, there's a fabulous, four-story fabric store which was holding its yearly sale Monday! We were in shock and awe. By the fabrics and by the crowds. And by the way those city women (and a few men) can push. My gracious goodness, they're aggressive. We tried giving our opinion to a lovely young soon-to-be bride who was trying to decide between two red satins for the second of her wedding dresses--I assume for the Asian portion. She texted her family the photos of them, though, and her family voted on the more traditional, while we--and the retail clerk--had urged her to go for the more unusual. Oh well. Don't quit our day jobs (if I had one!).
Anyway. ANYWAY, as I was saying, I was in a fabric store yesterday, grabbing just one piece I needed for something, then had to say my name for the good customer discount card kept behind the counter. Another customer at the counter then asked me, "Are you related to the W____ who works for the Bellingham School District?"
"I am," I answered. "He's my husband." Then I paused. "Is that a good thing or a bad thing?"
"Oh," she said. "Definitely a good thing."
The clerk helping me chuckled. "He's a high school counselor," I told her. Most people love the Beve. They find his patience exactly what their kids need to navigate the rough waters of adolescence. Beve doesn't raise his voice, looks for ways to help kids, looks for ways to step into their shoes--and into the shoes of their parents at the same time. No easy trick, it seems to me.
But sometimes kids can't be helped. They are hell-bent (excuse the pun) on making choices that lead them farther and farther away from right and good and health. And when they make those choices, sometimes it's because their parents are behind them, having made exactly the same kind of choices, their parents behind them...and so forth back through the generations. And yet, those are often the parents who blame the system, blame Beve, blame everyone they can think of for not helping their kids.
So there have been times, and granted not many, when people have had a bone to pick with the Beve, and they are more than willing to pick it with me if that's their only choice. I'm not proud of it, but I was a little tired yesterday. Not at my best. Not up-to-speed, so to speak, so wasn't sure I'd be capable of handling someone who wanted to take a shot at my husband. So I was wary. Almost ready to deny him, if she was about to raise a gun and take a shot.
Our conversation didn't go that way. She loves the Beve. Loves what he's done for her sons, how he's been calm and steady with them, how he's had a talk a time or two to set them back on track, and how those talks seem to be taking.
But here's the thing. I got out to the car, and had a moment. Quite a moment, to tell you the truth. I heard some pretty hard words in my head. "I tell you, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times." Now I'm pretty sure I'd never deny that the Beve is my husband. But I also know that sometimes I just don't want to get into it. And isn't that the way it is with Christ? Isn't it true that sometimes it's easier to just keep silent when others around us disparage the name--whose Name we wear? Isn't sometimes simpler to 'hold the peace' when we know that someone who is a believer isn't living up to that Name? How do we most honor the Name? How do we show our neighbors who we're related to?
Maybe you've never denied Him. Maybe every action and word and gesture of your life is seamless. If so, could you please teach me how? Teach the rest of us how? Because I want to honor Him. I really do. I don't want to deny Him. But sometimes I hold my peace when I should speak. So I pray, Father God, just for today, give me the courage of my convictions to speak your name, speak up for your name. To speak the Name of Jesus. I believe, I know, I love, I am related to Jesus.