Two People

All because two people fall in love, the world changes.

Belinda and I had finally escaped on a Saturday date. It was really an “errand” date, but after fifteen years and five kids, she will settle for just about anything from me that may remotely resemble a date. The first stop on our romantic journey was the library, where we checked out more books for the kids and paid our library fines. Our family has paid so many fines we are insisting the library name their next branch after us.

The ultimate destination for our romantic getaway was the thrift store, where I hoped to buy a sports coat. Being the not-so-wealthy benefactor of a seven-person clan, I cannot afford a $400 suit. However, on “Blue Tag” days at Thrift Town, I can get a jacket for about 1/100th of that price. So El Cheapo and his willing companion set their course for the land of many bargains.

Some dolt had decided to put a craft mall next to the library. You guys know what I mean—one of those stores where they sell frilly, hand-crafted items that end up all over your house. We husbands do not get to display our golf trophies in the living room, but somehow when a rotten, old fence slat gets cut and painted, it becomes “décor.”

She said she just wanted to go in for a “few minutes” to see what she could see. How could I be so dumb? There were frilly, hand-crafted poodle skirts, candles, and pillows everywhere. My lovely consort perused the aisles like the professional shopper she is. She found a Spiderman lunchbox and handed it to me, mentioning something about a “birthday present.” I’m not quite sure why they sell “made-in-China” lunchboxes at a craft mall, but now they had one less.

We meandered through the quilt section and entered a large booth displaying a mixture of décor made with things you would find in your grandfather’s shed. Then, she saw it—a long, thin piece of wood with the painted words “All because two people fell in love.”

She exclaimed, “Oh! That is so cute! Check the price.” I lifted the edge and read, “$22.” Using my refined, tender love language, I blurted, “Hon, I’ve got a hunk of wood like that out in the garage. For about $1.50, I could get all the materials down at Home Depot.”

There was another lady in the booth who dressed like she had been to a few craft fairs before. The craft lady’s shoulders shook as she stifled a laugh over my ignorance. Belinda cooed again about how cute the sign was and how it reminded her of our marriage. I looked at the warped fence slat with a poor paint job and wondered what she meant by that comparison.

Desperately, I made a couple of lame comments about how we really needed to get going to the next, exciting destination on our dream date. We sauntered towards the register, and I rejoiced at my good fortune to depart with the mere purchase of a lunchbox; but she kept looking back. Then, she teared up. “You really want that, don’t you?” I asked, sobering up from my thick-headedness.

In one of my rare moments of God-inspired brilliance, I left the register and walked back to the booth. As I gently removed the sign from its display, the craft lady smiled at me. She knew a lot more than I did about the meaning of the words, “All because two people fell in love.”

All because two people fell in love, I pay library fines on my dates.

All because two people fell in love, I buy Spiderman lunch boxes.

All because two people fell in love, I buy clothes at the thrift store.

All because two people fell in love, I am a home school “principal.”

All because two people fell in love, I have a wonderful wife who serves her family.

All because two people fell in love, I have five kids who will change the world for Christ.

As I put my new décor in the back of our home school “bus,” I thought about why the two people fell in love: Because the Lord ordained it—just as He ordained us to raise five kids and He ordained to raise seven more for us in Heaven. I climbed into the car and thought about the thrift store and where in the world I would buy my clothes if He had let us keep all twelve.

I backed out and steered toward the thrift store, realizing that I would probably pay less for a sport coat than I did for a warped fence slat. Yet as I looked over at my smiling home school queen, it occurred to me that the Lord does know best. All because two people fell in love, I am immeasurably blessed.

If you would like to share your thoughts on all of this or want some tips on craft mall avoidance, please contact me atImperfectFather@Gmail.com