“No, no dear. Stay by me.”
The old gentleman gently put his arm on his wife’s shoulder to keep her from wandering off as he ordered two pastrami sandwiches. I immediately realized that his wife’s condition was something like that of a person who suffers from Alzheimer’s or dementia.
I imagined how difficult that must be for a spouse to deal with, over time, after decades of fully engaged companionship, now watching one’s husband or wife slowly drift away, needing constant attention and care, with less and less possibility of the reciprocation of affection as time goes by. But for this gentleman, it seemed so effortless. He knew exactly how to speak to her and how to keep her smiling, all while guarding her every move, sparing her from causing chaos to the others on line around them.
This gentleman displayed what it meant to be a husband.
When they reached the register he jokingly asked his wife if she had stolen anything, as he checked her jacket pockets. The gentleman paid the cashier and waited patiently for their order, continually making sure that his wife remained safely at his side.
As I walked out of the bagel shop with my lunch, I couldn’t help but to pray for them. And, to also thank God for allowing me to see such a beautiful sight. I thought to myself…
“That’s what a marriage is.”
I prayed that God would cause me to be that kind of a husband to my wife. To express such a love towards her… not expecting anything in return.
Christ’s love for His bride is exactly that. It’s a love which guard-rails a drifting spouse. It’s a love that speaks to His bride’s heart, keeping her content by causing her to rest in Him; all while making sure that she remains safely at His side. It’s a love which sees only beauty, regardless of the condition…
Song of Songs 4:1 (ESV)
“Behold, you are beautiful, my love,
behold, you are beautiful!”
Godspeed, to the brethren!