I am in my studio rushing against a deadline when my husband, who is working at home today, calls from the other end of the house: "Honey, can you print something for me?" I groan. Fred is organizing a rather large and impressive event, a bi-ennial golf tournament. The All-America Match pits his current team against an elite group of alumni players—those who, as students, earned the esteemed status of All-America. This is no small achievement. Strident academic and athletic criteria must be met. My husband the coach challenges his players to achieve excellence in the classroom as well as on the golf course. Any who earn the national ranking of All-America are put, by him, on a pedestal. Inclusion in this tournament is part of the brouhaha he makes over them. The All-Americas look forward to it for twenty-four months; the date is sacrosanct on their calendars. They fly in from all over the world for the weekend tourney, some with families in tow. This year, Seth, newly married, will wear his Canadian Mounty uniform during the opening ceremony—a first. They will all toast their former teammate Colin, who can't make it to Savannah this time. An award-winning furniture designer from Edinborough, he recently lost the tip of his finger in a table saw.
My husband, now a PGA teaching pro, is a product of this school. He was the college's very first All-America player, in any sport. Normally he competes with the other "old guys" in this event, against the decidedly slimmer, younger fellas who comprise the team he currently coaches. Both sides adore this; they love having Coach in the mix. It's fraternal, a big competitive brotherhood, and it means a lot to my man. He looks forward to this weekend more, even, than do any of the others. They are all friends, but he is their Coach. Unfortunately Fred had knee surgery recently, and somehow or other is suffering pain in his shoulders as a result. Go figure. His knee is fine but he can barely move his arms. Sleep is difficult, as is swinging a golf club. He's still not sure whether or not he'll be able to play. All of this makes him, lately, crabby. Oh, wait, maybe it's me who's crabby. It's hard to tell anymore. Let's just say, we're both suppressing crabbiness.
This afternoon he's working on the score board for the event. Fred is a graphic designer by trade. He unexpectedly became a college golf coach eighteen years ago, but you can't take the design out of the designer. Everything has to be perfect. He spends all day fine-tuning the graphics for the board, which brings us back to the moment when he barks out his request.
It takes a long time to transfer the over-sized files and get them ready to print. The design is comprised of white type on a black background, so of course it eats up all of my ink. That stuff's not cheap, ya know. There is also, of course, a paper jam. I grumble an unholy appellation, irritation building as my own work sits unattended. Meanwhile, the clock ticks away. When I finally have the prints I stack them into an untidy pile and march down the hall to let my husband know what a gigantic inconvenience this process has been, and how annoyed I am. But before I make it to the den I remember reading about Sarah in my bible this morning. Apparently she addressed Abraham as my dear husband. Apparently, I'm supposed to follow her example.
And so, I do.
Cultivate inner beauty, the gentle, gracious kind that God delights in. The holy women of old were beautiful before God that way, and were good, loyal wives to their husbands. Sarah, for instance, taking care of Abraham, would address him as "my dear husband." You'll be true daughters of Sarah if you do the same, unanxious and unintimidated. ~ 1 Peter 3:4 The Message