Each time one of my children has wed, I have had a flood of memories about my own courtship and marriage more than three decades ago. Needless to say, as a young would be minister, I had little to offer in the way of earthly prospects for my future wife.
Recently, a couple happily married for more than sixty years gave me a book of humor titled Healing Through Humor by Charles and Frances Hunter. It contained the following story – one that hit a little too close to home for me as a preacher…
AND THE GOOD NEWS
A young woman brought her fiancé home to meet her parents. After dinner, her mother told her father to find out about the young man.
The father invited the fiancée to his study for a talk. "So what are your plans?" the father asked the young man.
"I am a Biblical scholar," he replies.
"A Biblical scholar. Hmmm," the father said. "Admirable, but what will you do to provide a nice house for my daughter to live in?"
"I will study," the young man replies, "and God will provide for us."
"And how will you buy her a beautiful engagement ring, such as she deserves?" asked the father.
"I will concentrate on my studies," the young man replies, "God will provide for us."
"And children?" asked the father. "How will you support children?"
"Don't worry, sir, God will provide," replies the fiancé.
The conversation proceeded like this, and each time the father questioned, the young idealist insists that God will provide.
Later, the mother asked, "How did it go, Honey?" The father answered, "He has no job and no plans, and he thinks I'm God."
Needless to say, I am extremely grateful that my own in-laws were willing to take a chance on me, unpromising as I was, way back in 1983. No doubt in large part because of that, my wife and I now have not only thirty-two years of a wonderful marriage to celebrate, but also three incredible children along with their respective spouses. I pray I never disappoint my gracious in-laws.
And I am also glad that my son’s new in-laws appear to be willing to take a similar chance on him. Just as I pray I never disappoint my own in-laws, I also pray that he never disappoint his either.
SOURCE: Charles and Frances Hunter, Healing through Humor (Lake Mary, Florida: Creation House Press, 2003), pp. 190-20.
This familiar joke is also available online, among numerous places, at: http://jokesdigest.com/cgi-bin/5209/jokepage1.cgi?jid=5791.
NOTE: In an added note of irony, the television show titled "All in the Family" was popular at the time I was courting and marrying my precious wife. In the natural give and take that occurred between my wife's family and me, we embodied the concept of "life imitating art".
As an only child, my wife filled the role of Gloria. Her father, a hard-working man with traditional values, represented the character of Archie; her mother as a devoted wife and mother that of Edith. That left me, as an eternal student with a chronically empty stomach and little prospects for gainful employment, in the role of Mike - or as I was affectionately referred to by Vickie's uncle: "Meathead".