On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

The Piatts – Easter, 2011

I forgot my daughter-in-law’s birthday. Bad mother-in-law! And what makes it doubly unforgiveable is that she was an answer to prayer.

Christian didn’t have much luck with girls as a teenager. He was like me. He always fell for the dangerous ones, the ones who ripped your heart out and stomped on it while looking over your shoulder and flirting with someone at the next table. But he survived. He had tons of friends and was always involved in too many projects to grieve over lost love for long.

I’ve always prayed for Christian, but when he was in his early twenties, I started praying that God would send him a godly wife. Little did I know that He would send a preacher.

After he graduated from college, Christian took a job working with children with learning issues. He learned to administer tests to identify the problem, outline a program to address the problem, and give more tests to check progress. He started in the Dallas office and was soon one of the company’s top testers and trainers. He was sent to other company offices to work with new employees and with schools that were learning the company methods. He spent time inChicago,Seattle, and Golden,Colorado; and when they contracted with the school system inPueblo,Colorado, he was sent there to get the program started.

While on assignment, he stayed in company apartments with other young, single employees, and for a while, the excitement of new places and new people was enough to hold off homesickness. After several months, however, the new wore off. Compared to the lively and multi-faceted music scene of Big D, the social life in most of his temporary homes was sorely lacking. Even when there was something of interest to do, his limited paycheck didn’t stretch to cover it. Visits home were costly and few, and the weekends stretched out endlessly, making him look forward to Monday mornings. When Rita made her plans, Christian didn’t stand a chance.

Rita was a teacher at the school where Christian was working. They worked together to get the new program up and running, and they struck up a friendship. One Friday afternoon, as he dreaded another lonely weekend, he turned to her for suggestions.

“What does a single guy do around here for entertainment?”

That was the opening she was waiting for.

“I have a niece inDenverwho’s about your age. I’m sure she’d be glad to show you around if you don’t mind driving up there.”

Normally, a blind date was the last thing on his to do list, but it was a long time until Monday.

“Sure. Why not?”

Rita grabbed the phone and dialed Amy’s number.

“Hi, Amy. It’s Rita. Do you have any plans this evening?”

Rita had mentioned this new guy and hinted that Amy might like him, but Amy made it plain she wasn’t interested in a relationship at this point in her life. Assuming Rita had gotten the message, she didn’t suspect what was coming.

“No, I don’t. What’s up?”

“Here,” Rita said. “Talk to Christian.” She handed the phone to Christian, and that was the beginning.

I got a call from Christian two nights later. A Sunday night call wasn’t unusual, but there was something about his voice that made me think this one might be. We made small talk for a few minutes, and finally, when I couldn’t stand the suspense any longer, I asked.

“Okay. What’s up?”

He took a deep, shaky breath and said, “I met someone.”

Someone was Amy, and he told me all about her. She was a beautiful, intelligent young woman who loved music and life as much as he did. Besides that, she was a student minister with a relaxed, easy-gAmyoing style that helped heal some of the wounds Christian had suffered under more conservative theologians. A little over a year later, I got another phone call.

“Hey, Mom! Amy and I have decided to get married.”

Twelve years later, Amy is a wonderful wife and mother and the daughter I never had. When God answers prayers for a godly wife, He doesn’t mess around!

Happy Birthday, Amy. Love you!

Comments on: "Mother-In-Law Penance | by Linda Brendle" (1)

  1. If that “penance” won’t work, there’s no hope! 🙂 And Happy Birthday, Amy, from Aunt Jodie.

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