Sunday, December 17, 2017

Our Husbands

As I write here this morning, I am thinkin’ about Wild Man. I have his picture right in front of me. I know if he were here, he would say things like, “Connie, why are you worried about Mary Elisabeth? She and Brandon have their own lives and you have a life here.” And I know that.

Yesterday the boys came to help me with some things. I broke down and cried just for no reason. John said, “Mom, you don’t have a thing in the world to worry about.” Well, I know that. I told John that I just wished I could do a better job at what I am doin’. I want to carry this thing out as to make my kids proud of me. I want to be an example so badly, I ache all over. I just want to be found faithful. I want the Lord to say to me, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” In my deep sufferings, I want to be a light. And yet I feel I haven’t been. And I do understand that the devil would try to condemn me, no matter what I did.

Ya know, in one area of all of this, I have to say I have a peace about Jim. Yesterday Mary L called and I had been crying. I apologized that I was in such a mess as I answered the phone. MaryL said, “Well, Connie, that is OK — you miss Jim. He was your husband and best friend. He was your mate for 40 years and you miss him.” And I said, “Ya know, I don’t miss Jim. I feel His presence with me all the time.” Now talk about grace — that is it.

Ya know, Jim and I were very close. He knew me as no one else did. Jim wasn’t much at words. But when he agreed in prayer with me, then it was as good as done. We have lived in this house for 33 years. My greatest hope in this life is to continue to write out our memories. Our marriage was just so full of pounding interactions. I never did anything but deal with Jim and he dealt with me continually. I don’t even know how to explain this. He could barely go to work and leave me here. I mean, even when we were older, like in the past few years, we were always so full of interaction with each other.

Some women are better at being a wife than a mother. Usually a woman will excel in one place or another. My gift was always to be more of a wife to Jim. I loved being a mother. And being a mother is a lot easier, I think, than being a wife. But Jim needed a 24-7 wife and I was it. To me, it was like riding a wild bull all the time. Jim was all man and he just wanted me by his side, no matter what he did — well, except when he was at work. I mean the man would want me to go to the Quick Trip with him to get a pack of cigs. Just to ride along? I finally got out of that. I was continually tryin’ to explain to him that I had things to do here at home. And he knew that and continually tried to stop himself from trying to take me along to get the oil changed in the car or whatever.

Now this is all coming from a man who, in the first 12 years of our marriage, left me over 30 times. In the first 12 years, we were only together probably 4 years total — or less. I somehow couldn’t catch his eye, much less his heart. It was as though I barely existed to him. That Wild Man was like tamin’ a bucking horse. The army at 18 couldn’t hold him down. Prison couldn’t hold him down as he escaped there, too. He would never stay put. But ya know, the grace of God finally held him down.

I loved Jim and because of my covenant I made with God concerning my marriage, God used me to win Jim’s heart. And ya know, when he died, I knew he didnt want to leave me. And I know he is still with me. I don’t doubt that for a minute. Jim is in heaven with God and he sees me and we love each other as much as always.

Jim never gave me a moment’s worry about his love for me in the past 26 years, after he was saved. I don’t doubt his love right now as I stand here writing. I got healed of rejection and the fear of desertion early on in my marriage. I guess it has just carried over. Because I don’t feel the fear and loss of losing Jim. I feel peace.

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