Josh's sister Kari and her husband Lukas spent this past weekend with us, as I mentioned in the last post (which would mean Misty, Anna, and Sarah all knew the correct answer -- but only one prize, sorry!). We had great fun with them, of course, anybody who has ever spent 5 minutes with Kari/Lukas have left with their sides splitting with laughter. Just about all my voices (and the voices I frequently pass on) are "Kari voices" -- half the kids in our old youth group could do Kari "fake excited" voice. Add Josh into the mix, and "Bubby" and "Sissy" are just about "redonkulous" together. Kari is a sort of Mark Twain, constantly inventing new words, names and accents that are as realistic as they are hysterical, making them stick and become forever a part of our vocabularies.
I love how Kari makes us laugh. But I noticed something else about Kari that I really appreciated this weekend. She and Lukas have been married for 2 1/2 years now, and she is expecting their first little one, Max Garrett. Kari has officially moved past the newlywed stage, but I haven't seen her grow tired of her husband. She hasn't fallen into the common pattern of whining and nagging, scoffing and disrespecting that is typical of marriages today -- even Christian ones. I see Kari respect Lukas, naturally look to him to make the call, admire and laugh at him with fondness and even adoration. She doesn't take him for granted, or treat him like a child (which is, I think, easy to slip into when you have a husband that is very funny). She brags on him, and builds him up. They are great companions. It's easy to see that they are on the same team.
Maybe that is not a big deal to you. To me, it is amazing. The majority of wives, young and old, get in a pattern where their relationship with their husband is sort a tug-of-war game, a constant battle. I just finished reading Carolyn Mahaney's Feminine Appeal, which lays out the Biblical pattern for wives on how to relate to their husbands. I appreciated Carolyn's warm encouragement to the reader to remember how you felt about your husband when you first fell for him, to really look at him, and consider him and all his qualities. This is a great book! I couldn't recommend a better one on this topic (needless to say, I lent mine to Kari -- hope she reads it and is encouraged).
Girls -- those of you who are wives -- take a moment to take stock and consider how you relate to your husband. If someone observed you and wrote a blog post about it, how would you be evaluated? Is it quite clear that you love him? Can your children tell?
Little Max will have one thing going for him right away (besides the fact that he will just HAVE to have an incredible sense of humor) -- he'll have a mommy that esteems his daddy just like the Bible says. And that, Kari, is one of the greatest gifts only you can give him.