When he entered the house, he was surprised to find his young bride sitting at the kitchen table crying.
Before asking her why, he ran a quick inventory of his recent actions, just to check if he had done anything to contribute to her sadness.
Once he was convinced that he had not he asked, “Why are you crying? What’s the matter?”
No reply, only more sobs as she shook her head.
He wondered why she made him work so hard for an answer that only she knew. He pulled out a chair and took a seat beside her. He placed a hand on her shoulder and asked once again, “Why are you crying?”
“It is because you won’t grow up and be a man,” she managed to say before she resumed crying.
He didn’t know what he had expected to hear, but he knew that wasn’t it. Her comment made him mad.
“What do you mean grow up and be a man?”
“You are acting the same as you did when we were in high school,” she answered. “You haven’t changed. “
This puzzled him, because he wasn’t aware that he needed to change. He was good enough for her when he was one of the stars on the school’s football team, so why not now?
True, he always had been a rebel. It was a badge of honor in the streets. He was first to fight and last to back down. He knew that her teachers and parents had warned her of dating him, but in spite of their meddling objections, he won her heart anyway.
As reality set in, he now saw himself losing her.
“What do you mean I’m not a man? I make more money then your dad does,” he said as he pointed around their home filled with new furniture.
“It isn’t yours,” she replied. “It is your dad’s. He paid for all of this, not you. Everything we have is because of your dad.”
He hadn’t thought it possible that he could become madder, but he did. What made him mad the most was that he know she was right. His father’s deep pocket had always been a source of pride with him, but never in a thousand years did he ever believe that it was a hindrance to him maturing. Whenever he got into trouble, which was often, his dad would bail him out. As a result, he rarely faced the consequences of his actions. On the rare times that he did face the music, his dad sat him down and told him how things were going to be. On such occasions, he listened and obeyed. Although he was a rebel, he knew not to bite the hand that fed him.
One such occasion was when he discovered his high school sweetheart was expecting. He recalled his father’s words.
“She is a good girl, and you are going to marry her.”
He did as he was told, but little else changed in his life. He still fought and ran the streets. He played house in a home provided by his dad, and to him all was well with the world.
“My dad works and provides for his family,” she told him. “He doesn’t go running to his dad every time he needs something.”
Her words stung him, but he could not deny their truthfulness.
“What do you want me to do?”
“Grow up,” she replied.
“How do you suppose I do that?”
“I don’t know,” she said, as once again her tears started to fall.
He pulled his chair away from the table and headed across the street to his dad’s house. “I’ve got to go,” he told his father, relaying everything that had taken place with his wife. His dad understood, but nevertheless was sadden to hear the news that his son was leaving.
“Where will you go?”
“I don’t know. North, I guess.”
“Will you be back?”
“I don’t know.”
In the days that followed, he packed up his young family and indeed headed north, where he figured there would be more opportunities for them.
The Bible states, “That once a man takes a wife, that nothing should come between them.” The Bible also states, “When I was a child I did as a child and spoke as a child, but when I became a man I put away childish things.”
Sometimes life just comes at you fast.