Settling for Mr. Good Enough?
- 2010 16 Mar
"That the man of God may be adequate, perfect..." 2 Timothy 3:17
We were working in a Howard Johnsons for our summer jobs. I was a waitress and he worked the front desk. We drove the thirty minutes together to work each day to conserve on gas, so we spent a lot of time together that summer.
He had asked me to be his girlfriend one particular day, and the thought flitted through my mind... is he good enough for me? He was quiet, reserved, a nerd before nerd was even a word. I don't think he had a pocket protector but he did have a personal calculator. Back then that was weird. And I dated popular: jocks, student government members.
But to my surprise, I said yes. We dated and married, and Mr. Good Enough has become Mr. Wonderful, Mr. Phenomenal, Mr. Thank-You-for-Choosing-Me-for-Your-Wife.
You see, when I was dating and looking at prospective mates, I was searching for a male version of me: outgoing, fun-loving, adventurous, musical, and a reader. Someone who wanted to make a difference in the world, be politically involved and move up the ranks. Someone who wanted to conquer any mountain confronting us, and be loud and bold in doing it.
But let me tell you about the man I married. He goes to work every day so I can stay home with the children. He pays a mortgage on two homes - due to a move and the current economic down-trend of real estate sales. He buys his cars with cash and really prefers we pay cash for everything - groceries, vacations, anything - or save up until we can.
This man has absolutely no political aspirations. He would rather be at home with his family than at a political function. His time is spent on mundane things like teaching his children to drive safely, defensively. Building computers with his apple-doesn't-fall-far-from-the-tree geekish sons. Erecting chicken coops for his poultry-loving daughter. Or helping our special needs son learn baseball by tossing balls in the front yard, yet again.
He has a spine of steel when it comes to right and wrong. And he never lies. Never. It just won't come out of his lips -- even when I ask him if a dress looks okay. If he likes it, he will let me know. If it isn't flattering, he will probably say, "You have so many outfits in your closet that are gorgeous on you." And that will be that.
I can trust his judgment and his words.
Since I was a soloist for our church, he learned how to run the sound system. That gave me peace of mind as I sang. When I speak at national conventions, he is in the background making sure the right notes are handed out, my headset microphone has a new battery, and giving me little high-signs to let me know I'm doing well. He gives me courage and confidence, and I rest easier.
This is-he-good-enough is more than good enough. He has turned into a great father. A family man many women would love to have. A true friend.
And he's mine.
What I didn't realize long ago was that my desire in a mate was a very arrogant and prideful longing. I wanted a man who was interested in my interests, who was a man's man, who drew the crowd and could handle it. I wanted - and what I wanted was so very temporal.
In his graciousness, God gave me what I needed. Someone who would teach me what it means to love unconditionally. To believe in others and respect them. To care for the little bit of earth given into our hands, and the people who live in our home. To raise children who know and love God and live their lives making the world better by volunteering and just being good citizens.
What I got was more than I bargained for, and I wonder, really, if I am good enough for him.
March 16, 2010
Mark and Kym Wright have been married 31 years, have 8 children and are about to gain their first daughter-in-love. They live in the north, but call Atlanta home. And they are still in love after all these years.