Thursday, June 09, 2011

Something Special in Memphis

I witnessed something special while on vacation in Memphis, Tennessee, this week.

The National Civil Rights Museum had nothing to do with it. The musicians of Beale Street were not involved. Neither the panda bears nor the Komodo dragons at the Memphis Zoo had anything to do with it.

Instead, it involved a small family eating lunch together at the Incredible Pizza Company.

When I first caught a glimpse of the husband, he didn't appear to be anything special. He looked a little overweight and unkempt as he picked up a tray and a couple of plates to fill with pizza. Nobody special, I assumed.

However, he began to seem quite a bit more special as he approached the table where his wife and young son were sitting. They were waiting patiently as the husband and father brought their meals to them.

As the man left the table in order to get his own pizza, I noticed his wife for the first time. She looked like a normal young woman in her twenties, but something about the manner in which her head jerked and her hands trembled indicated a problem with her motor skills. Upon a closer look, I realized that she was sitting in a wheelchair.

Had the young woman experienced a stroke or suffered a severe brain injury during an accident in the couple of years since her son's birth? I didn't know. But I knew that I had just witnessed something special: a man who was serious about loving his wife and providing his son with a good example.

This man had not merely remained with his wife following her debilitating injury. He had not merely met her basic physical needs. This man went out of his way to serve his wife.

He made sure that his wife would be present for both the meal and the games that their son would play afterwards in the restaurant's arcade. She would not be able to fully participate, but her husband made certain that she would at least be there.

It was simple, but thoughtful. It was something special in Memphis.

"Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman..." (1 Peter 3:7).


Tara Hicks said...


Terry said...

Thanks, Tara!

Tammi said...

This is a very rare and special moment, indeed. Far too often do I hear of a spouse having a stroke or receiving a gloomy prognosis and the other one hits the trail. So sad. . But this true story has given us a beautiful example of Christ's love for us, and what He expects us to do for others, especially our spouses...serve, for the glory of God.
Thanks for sharing!

Terry said...

Thank you, Tammi. I agree. It was an impressive and Christ-like moment.

Rick Morgan said...

Our culture wants to love as long as it is self-serving.

I did a post on this topic a couple of days ago. It is a video promoting a book that I can't wait to read called "Wrestling With an Angel"

We feel awesome when we receive grace and mercy but it is easy to hold back on sharing that feeling with somebody else.

Terry said...

Thanks, Rick. I had not caught up on all the blogs I missed while on vacation. I'll check it out in a few minutes.

Elaine said...

Thanks for sharing what you saw. What awesome love!

Terry said...

You're welcome, Elaine.

Jennifer (O) said...

I loved reading this Terry. It just reminds us that when we take our vows to become husband and wife that we do say "for better or for worse, in sickness and in health". Sometimes I think that couples saying those words are so caught up in the actual ceremony that they don't contemplate the magnitude of the words they just spoke.

I know that in taking care of my husband because of his electrocution, I do not resent my having to take care of him. I sometimes have a bit of pity wishing things could go back to the way they were but, we have chosen to find the blessings in what life has been given to us instead of letting it defeat us.

As with this man at the pizza place, he is finding the blessings in his life and learning to define what is the new normal for his family. What is and not what once was. What a great example of what true love is!

Terry said...

Thanks, Jennifer! Those are some great thoughts on this topic!