Thursday, February 23, 2012

Daddy Speaking

"Just get a box of tissues before you even start watching." I looked at his face, shadowed with stubble. Then I looked in his eyes. The laughing man's-man eyes had changed, become soft, almost misty. His lips tightened as though he were trying to control a quiver in his chin.

"GREAT movie," the woman beside him said, nodding passionately, eyes wide, vulnerable.

A chorus of voices joined in, accolades for the movie, comments on the powerful emotions.

I tried not to tense visibly. The very mention of the movie made my mind shut down...and my heart ache.

They were talking about the movie Courageous, the story of men stepping up, becoming who they should be, being the leaders God intended. Except the man in my life didn't, and I really didn't think I could watch another reminder of how things did not go as God would have chosen...as I wanted.

"It's a promise, not pain." A whisper deep in my heart, just loud enough for my conscious mind to register. Still, easy enough to dismiss as imaginary...because the pain was still all too real.

No. That movie was not for me.

I left the home group that night and headed back to my friend's home. The next day I left there and headed back to Texas.

We had survived Valentine's Day and the first anniversary of my husband's dying, and it was time to go home.

Although I knew it was only a date on the calendar, some part of me felt good, like we had crossed an unspoken line in time, a line that said the first wave of emotional landmines were behind us and although more would be ahead, we would weather them well.

I had no idea the first was waiting for me in a decorated bag on my counter.

When we drove into the driveway, our house sitter came to meet us. Everyone grabbed bags, coolers, and "stuff", and one trip at a time, we unloaded. With piles of bags, pillows, and personal things spread through the house, I went to the kitchen to see the flowers my friend Kristi had sent me. Although they were a few days old, they were stunning. Mary Kate had done a great job trimming them and tending them so they still looked lovely for me. White roses and red carnations hugged up by greenery. Perfect.

Beside the vase of flowers sat my gift. I opened it somewhat slowly, enjoying the thoughtfulness, being remembered, not being alone on this holiday of expressing love...of being loved.

Then I pulled it out...

...and stopped.

Courageous.

The DVD.

"It's a promise."

I slid it back into the bag and stared at the gift lying on my counter.

This was no coincidence. 

This was not a whisper that might or might not be real, a whisper easy to dismiss.

This was a language I understood, the language of a Father speaking to a daughter too raw, too afraid, to trust her own ears. So He spoke in ways I could hear...in a home group I visited once, more than seven hours from my home...and in a gift of love and hope delivered right to me...waiting on my return...clear words too close together in time to miss.

This was more than a movie. This was Daddy speaking...

4 comments:

mizzbrizz said...

I have been hesitant to see this because of my own daddy issues and wanting this kind of man for my own children. Not just a dad who loves them, but a dad who loves them enough to lay down his earthly life and to say Yes to Christ and Yes to living as Christ intended him to. I got a free movie rental from Redbox today...guess what I am going to rent?

That's Who I Am said...

What a breathtaking story. Thanks for sharing, Jerri. Wow. God is so good. :)

Anonymous said...

My heart ached watching that movie. Thank you for this post. I will remember those words and will live on that promise!

PX

Jerri Kelley said...

Mizzbrizz, I didn't know what it was about. I only knew it was about men acting courageously and families being healed. Just about tore my heart out to think about it, BUT there is healing. There are men who act courageously, and for those of us whose earth fathers and husbands acted...brokenly...there is a courageous Father and Husband...and He is wildly courageous in His love for us. :-)

Who You Am, yes, my friend, He is.

PX, sweetheart, remember, Daddy is good all the time. He is courageous all the time. He is healing all the time, and He makes YOU and your precious baby girl HIS priority all the time. I know the desire for a human man. I feel it, too, but I also feel the fullness of Him. Praying you do, too. And I feel I need to tell you, your daughter isn't missing out or walking half-whole. HE is her wholeness. If you feel she is missing something, so will she. If you embrace HIM as her Father, so will she. She will know herself as whole as you know she is...as you know YOU are. Love you!!!