In the update department, Ginny & I celebrated Valentine’s Day this prior weekend by meeting up with some great friends. I surprised her with dinner in Branson, Missouri at a restaurant where the four of us had all shared a date early in both of our dating relationships, some 7.5 years ago. It was great fun.
I must admit that Valentine’s Day does not receive the attention that I give birthdays or anniversaries. However, I love giving Ginny surprises- maybe too much. If one were to catch my wife in an honest moment, she might say that I very well may get more enjoyment out of the surprise than she. But you would never catch her in such moment; she loves me too much, and allows me to enjoy my hobby of surprising her.
So, with the knowledge of my Valentine views coupled with her increasing keenness to sniff out my schemes, I decided this Valentine’s would be perfect. I plotted, conspired, and lied my way to surprise her. I got her a car.
***Now, before you nominate me for spouse-of-the-year or begin to compare my gift with the Walgreen’s teddy bear you got for your loved one- just know, that the car I let her drive up to this point did not have heat….so, please, put down the ballot for Husband-of-the-year***
It was beautiful. Totally unexpected. Overboard. All that I could have hoped for. A true surprise.
If the first step is admitting you have a problem- I have a problem. For Christmas, I surprised her with a puppy. His name is Wilson. He’s cute. The verdict is still out on this one. This week, Ginny decided maybe she did like him.
All this because I have realized a few things through my habit. One, I’ll try a million more times if just for one success to get the reaction I got Saturday. I love to take her breath away. I’m more addicted than ever.
There are those experiences in life where you just kind of know that something greater is going on. Everyday experiences that resonate of something beyond this world. I think a true, breathtaking surprise is just that.
My affection for surprise has only been ratcheted up through Eliot. My suspicions tell me that the Lord may be a fan of surprise Himself. In what every parent or potential parent envisions as their nightmare, we found joy- Breathtaking, surprising…joy.
When we found out about Eliot’s diagnosis, we knew the days ahead would be difficult. But we only dared to hope for what we got- a beautiful little boy whom we got to know, hold, and enjoy.
I await the Lord to surprise me again with Himself. Truly, He is always surprising me. Being found where least sought. The Word is full of God’s surprises.
John 1:46 records Nathaniel’s reaction upon learning that the long-awaited Messiah has come- “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?”
There He goes again. Refusing to follow expectation and surprising with his presence. May you be surprised this week.
Matt & Ginny Mooney