My second son came in the kitchen late one winter afternoon. He was a freshman in high school. He pulled up a stool at the counter. I was doing dishes and cooking. He was dazzled again, by the sweet girl who had dazzled him in the 8th grade, the lovely girl who prompted the “You’re a Cake” lecture. They had “broken” up way back in the old days of the 8th grade. To be honest, even though they had broke up, they still admired each other.
There he sat, across from me, telling me how much he cared for her. He wanted to marry her when he graduated from high school.
All my sons have different communication “techniques.” The oldest is seriously logical, the second emotional and passionate, the third humorously logical, the fourth passionately logical, and the fifth – well, he’s our trash talker – quietly humorous, logical, easy-going.
Understand, too, 14-15 year olds communicate differently than they did when 3, 6, 9, 11, and post-16. Fourteen-fifteen year-olds take verbal stances that challenge. They like to turn their face to a point as if their face were carved in stone. It’s a very emotional stance. That emotional stance is like a wall that won’t be breached with logic. He was deeply convicted, defensive, and, in his estimation, mature enough to make this decision now, today.
I didn’t tell him he would think differently in a few years. That’s a useless argument. I didn’t tell him he was too young. That would have been like throwing gasoline on a fire.
Instead, I asked, “Are you man enough?”
The wall dropped. The emotions dried up. He didn’t say a word. Well, really, his heart probably fell to his feet. That’s what happens when truth hits you whether you like it or not. Especially when you don’t see it coming the way it did.
“Are you man enough,” I asked. “To take it to God and ask Him, ‘Is she the one you created for me?’ Do you love her enough to accept a ‘No” from God if He tells you she’s not the girl He planned for your life? Because if God says, “No,” then that means you are denying her greater happiness. Do you love her enough to let her have the happiness God made for her? You’re also denying yourself greater happiness, too.”
He walked away from our discussion emotionally subdued. I read his answer in his eyes. He didn’t want to take it to God in prayer. He didn’t want to risk a “No” from God. I could read it in his eyes. That was along, slow walk away from the kitchen. I imagine it is when you’re not ready to be what you want to be.
He’s prayed about every girl he’s liked since then. Sometimes he says God says ,”Yes.” But I think he doesn’t hear God over his own voice. He’s working on hearing God and not what he wants-not directly. He’s learning through experience in the relationship field. He moving towards accepting the truth in prayer.
The character of a man isn’t created in a day. It grows, just like an oak tree, until it’s tall enough and strong enough to withstand the storms. When he meets the girl God made for him, he’ll be strong enough and man enough to listen to God’s answer!