Friday, December 5, 2008

Thankful for Deborah

I know it's a week late after Thanksgiving, but I've had this in mind for some time. Here's a short list of some of the things I'm thankful for about Deborah. In no particular order...
  • Her thoughtfulness. She notices all of the little things that I like and don't like...even things that I've never thought about! She never neglects to give the "little attentions" like little notes in my lunches, learning to cook food that I like (and avoiding food that I don't like!), complimenting me for my little (often insignificant) accomplishments.
It is the little attentions, the numerous small incidents and simple courtesies of life, that make up the sum of life's happiness; and it is the neglect of kindly, encouraging, affectionate words, and the little courtesies of life, which helps compose the sum of life's wretchedness. [AH 108.2]
  • Her prayers. It seems that whenever she prays, God answers. From the smallest things like praying that the girls in her dorm will go to bed without fussing to praying about major decisions in her life, God has always answered her prayers in marked and undeniable ways. It also is because she is particularly sensitive to the Lord's moving in her life. I am always encouraged to know that she's praying for me.
The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man (and woman!) availeth much. [James 5:16]
  • Her frugality. She's thrifty but not stingy. It's fun and so refreshing to be able to laugh about how "cheap" we were able to get something, or to devise new methods to save. The leftovers she's been able to resurrect have been simply unbelievable! Yet, I'm amazed at how willing she has been to give freely and liberally to others.
Is [she] an economist, or will she, if married, not only use all her own earnings, but all of yours to gratify a vanity, a love of appearance? Are her principles correct in this direction? Has she anything now to depend upon? . . . I know that to the mind of a man infatuated with love and thoughts of marriage these questions will be brushed away as though they were of no consequence. But these things should be duly considered, for they have a bearing upon your future life. . . . [AH 46.2]
  • Her cooking. This may seem trivial, but to me it isn't! Being an Asian in Arkansas isn't easy, but I'll refer you here to see for yourself. The criteria for a girl to be able to cook authentic Asian food for me was on the "Would Like To Have in a Wife" list...but honestly, it was so high up there that it might as well have been in the "Essential To Have" list. Phew! I think I'm safe...
To the health and happiness of the whole family nothing is more vital than skill and intelligence on the part of the cook. By ill-prepared, unwholesome food she may hinder and even ruin both the adult's usefulness and the child's development. Or by providing food adapted to the needs of the body, and at the same time inviting and palatable, she can accomplish as much in the right as otherwise she accomplishes in the wrong direction. So, in many ways, life's happiness is bound up with faithfulness in common duties. {AH 89.3}
  • Her depth. I've always known that women were complicated creatures. But I think as most guys, at some point in my life I thought that I had them all figured out. Ha! Boy, was I wrong. On more than one occasion, I've been utterly baffled by the unique perspective that she's able to see things from. (Confession: It's more like frustration when she's right and I'm wrong...and she's usually right!) Also, her gentle and tactful way of communicating when I've stepped out of line has given me pause many times. Perhaps most of all, I've come to realize that I haven't even begun to fully learn all of the neat and wonderful things about this girl! (I have to leave the door open for future lists like this, right?)
I can honestly say that I'm a better person for having known Deborah!
(Taken at Winding Stairs, Arkansas)