Normally, one would find Clayton outside working around Will’s Creek Golf Course, but not this morning.
When I entered the clubhouse, I noticed Clayton sitting behind the counter. We greeted each other as is our routine. I noticed that his work clothes had been replaced by slacks and a polo shirt.
I asked him about the weather. This wasn’t your regular small talk, because I really wanted to know. Golf is a grown-man’s recess, and I wanted to know whether or not there was a chance that recess could be canceled. The last thing I wanted to do was stand inside and play heads-up Seven-up.
Clayton said that he didn’t believe rain was in the forecast.
With that matter settled, I asked, “Why are you so dressed up?”
“I have to go to Kirkland Clinic,” he replied.
Now, I am no doctor, and I didn’t stay at a Holiday Inn Express, but even I know that Kirkland Clinic isn’t a normal doctor’s appointment.
“Are you okay?” I asked.
Clayton rose from his chair and took a few steps toward the counter. He shook his head and waved his right hand in the air.
“Yeah, I am fine,” he said. “This is just a yearly check up.”
“Good,” I replied. “You had me worried for a moment. What’s going on with you?”
“My wife Jeanette is very shy. She is an introverted person,” he said. “Well, one day when I arrived home she cornered me with a request. Apparently, she had seen a doctor’s advertisement offering to do four major medical exams. She wanted to go, but due to her being shy, she would only go if I went along.
“I agreed to go only because it was important to her. I went into this appointment thinking it was all about her, because after all I am a big healthy, outdoors-working kind of guy.
“Well, she completed her test and everything was fine. I completed the first couple and they confirmed what I thought about myself. I believe it may have been bone density or something like that.”
The third test, however, wasn’t so good. As a matter of fact, the results showed something life-threatening.
“Have you ever heard of an aortic aneurysm?” Clayton asked.
“No,” I replied. “I have heard of them separately but never like that.”
“Well, it turned out that’s what I had! The doctors scheduled surgery right away. If had it not been for those exams, I could have died!
“Man, just to think, had it not been for God giving you a shy wife, you could be dead.”
For such a time as this, I muttered, more of an afterthought than an actual statement, but Clayton caught it.
“That’s Esther, isn’t it?” he asked. But before I could reply he continued.
“You know I believe that. A lot of things that people may consider everyday coincidence are really moments where God is intervening on their behalf. I know He did that for me.” .
I nodded in agreement and I wished him well. As I exited the clubhouse, I though about how awesome God is to order a man’s steps and provide him with the wife he would need to one day save his life.
I am reminded of the scripture that states, “What is a man that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?”