Sunday, April 6, 2014

You Look Radiant

No one’s ever said that to me. “Dave, you look, well—just radiant! I mean really. Today you are radiant.” I think people have said it to my wife. Not me. Not that I can remember.

But the adventure of marriage—and probably any good friendship—is to end up with that. Again, I can’t help but view this through the lens of my Christian worldview. I realize that I’m tainted, but in St. Paul’s letter to the people who lived in Ephesus he describes what a marriage relationship can look like. After commanding people to “submit to one another” he describes what that would look like in a Christian marriage (Paul isn’t applying this to those who are not Christians). The husband is to love his wife sacrificially as Christ loved the church and the wife is to respectfully submit; that is, to put herself under her husbands mission to love her that way. When he doesn’t love her like that, she’s obligated to say something. That’s my take on it. That’s the way I read it. Maybe I’m wrong but I don’t think so.

So true submission, in my opinion, can look more like conflict, than the door mat style submission I’ve run across on some occasions in religious circles. When husbands just check out or don’t care or do things that create anxiety or fear or hurt in the life of a wife, or when wives show disdain, contempt, or scorn for their husbands, nobody’s looking radiant. And there’s a lot of that going on behind the closed doors of a home and the frequent, outward attempts at the facade of marital health and bliss are at best deceitful. Both men and women are very good at keeping stuff hidden. There’s a lot of ways to lie and most of us are good at all of them.

The ultimate goal of this respect giving, loving, submissive behavior is radiance. I think this means that ultimately, both partners seek to present the other radiant before God. I don’t see why a wife can’t do the same thing for a husband. That is exhilarating! So we have marriage, the adventure. Marriage, the epic (as one person has said)! Marriage, the quest, the journey, the voyage! The goal: to love the other well, so well that you present him and her radiant before God and others. Frankly, I want to do that for my friends and relatives as well.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The VooDoo Onion

I went down hard. My right foot rolled right, my body fell left. I nearly did a face plant on the pavement. It had rained all night, and a pile of silt had collected over a pot hole. It didn’t matter how fast I was running, I would have gone down even if I was walking! I was on mile 12 ½ of a 17.3 mile speed run in preparation for the Boston marathon. It was clear I wasn’t going to run anymore that day, and it was almost a five mile walk home. However, as providence would have it, I was ¼ mile from the home of my trusted friend Lou, the Greek. Though it was only 7:15 a.m. I hobbled to his home, woke he and his wife up (They’d been out dancing and had gotten home at 4:00 a.m.), and asked to use their phone. “Forget the phone,” he said, “I’ll drive you home.”

Lou immediately set out to fix the ankle. Actually, all I wanted was a phone or a ride but Lou insisted. “We’re doing VooDoo,” he sang while dancing in the kitchen as he cut up, of all things, an onion. He then put it in saran wrap and placed the raw onion on my ankle and the saran wrap around the onion and ankle. “Shouldn’t we put ice on it?” I protested. “Not yet,” responded Lou. “So is this some kind of Greek thing?” I asked (Lou is Greek and if you know any Greeks you’ll know why I asked the question). “No,” he said, “It’s a soccer thing and I’ve used it myself. Works every time.” Apparently there is something about the onion that limits the swelling and immediately begins the healing process. Lou had stolen the idea from some soccer players who had used this remedy regularly. After two hours I switched to ice then Advil, ice, Advil, ice, Advil for the rest of the day. 

It’s been several days now and the ankle hardly swelled up. I ran a hard 6 miles last night—a little more than 2 ½ days after injuring it—and then another 9.8 miles this morning. No pain. No problem. VooDoo or just good home cooking, I don’t know, but try it. You have to chop the onion up into little pieces, and apply it directly on the affected area soon after the injury is sustained for it to be effective. The saran wrap simply keeps the raw onion pieces on the injured body part. It works. Hope you don’t have to use it but if you do, try it. And you can even use the onion in a stew afterwards! Who knew?