Tuesday, July 17, 2012


So..... back when I was a junior in high school, living in New York City....I was eating lunch in the cafeteria one day.. and.. 
"Ray" walked through the door. Ray had graduated the year before and had been a VERY POPULAR senior...a football player... student council type guy. After graduation, Ray had enlisted in the Army. He came back to school that day wearing his uniform.  His appearance caused an uproar... Kids were running up to him like he was a rock star..It was obvious that Ray had a specific goal.  He wouldn't stop to talk. He kept looking around and then his eye caught something and he walked intently toward it.    The 'IT" Ray was walking toward was.......ME.
Hundreds of kids had their eyes glued on him as he pulled up a chair... next to ME.. and said something like, "How are you?" or something like that.   He asked if I would like to go to the basketball game on Saturday night? YES.. I wanted to go.  This would have been my first date with ANYONE.  He was not a Christian.  He didn't love Jesus.  He was a party boy.  I knew this.  I didn't care.  I was Little Miss Wants To Be Popular.  I told Ray I'd have to ask my parents.  He agreed to call me at home later that night.
At dinner  I asked, "Can I go to the basketball game on Saturday night with a boy named Ray?"   My mom, full of the Holy Spirit, saw the true picture immediately.  Ray was not the boy for her daughter. So...she said, "NO."  I was SO ANNOYED.  I begged, pleaded, pouted and cried.  She still said "NO".  Later that night.. I was SO embarrassed to have to tell Ray I wasn't allowed to go.  The next day I became SO.. SO... UNCOOL.  No one in school could understand why I was staying home Saturday night.

But  I wasn't staying home Saturday night. OH, NO.  I was going to CHURCH... to a YOUTH EVENT.... with my PARENTS!  Who goes to a YOUTH MEETING WITH THEIR PARENTS???  Me. That's who.

A pastor of a local church had a music trio that he sang in with two teenaged brothers who attended his church.   I slumped in the back seat of the car on the way there. I was SO ANNOYED AT MY MOTHER!  SO ANNOYED AT MY MOTHER! SO ANNOYED AT MY MOTHER!  My mother didn't seem fazed by my annoyance at her.  We got there.  They sang.  One kid played the piano.  He sang really well.  They were o.k., I guess.
After the service the piano playing teenager found his way to my side. We talked. We laughed. He was really sweet.  I liked him.

A week later he called and asked me to go to a Sweetheart Banquet at his church. I asked my mom and this time she said, "YES".   I went. That night changed my life.  That boy became my husband.  My first and only boyfriend became and still is my first and only husband.

Forty three years later I still wonder what course my life would have taken if my mother had been afraid to say "NO" to something she wanted to say NO to?  I married a good man, a man who, as a boy, loved God more than he loved me.  He's been a saint.  I coulda ended up with RAY........dear Lord. 

I see so many mothers who are afraid to say no when they know that saying "no" is the right thing to say. 

I had a mom who loved me enough to say "no" when she thought something wasn't right for me.

Sometimes love is a two letter word. 
Mrs. Older.
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