Often people share stories of heartbreak and tragedy with me. So when I’m let in on something inspirational, I’ll do whatever it takes to get the person to let me share it publicly: plead, cajole, bribe, drug. Fortunately I didn’t have to go THAT far with Jason.
JASON AND HIS 100 REASONS
First it was Mermaid Girl.
She’d been put in charge of my hand-me-down iPod, while I backed out of the driveway and began the short jaunt to work. I’d forgotten to turn down the volume and Hunter Hayes’ Wanted burst from the speakers. Once we’d recovered, my daughter grinned at me. “Your music is growing on me. I like this.”
A few days later, a male teacher I sort of worked with sidled up to me, looked furtively around and then confessed. “I’m starting to like country music.”
If only I could get another unnamed daughter on board.
I picked her up from work the other day, and as she slid into the passenger seat, she rolled her eyes and dramatically mumbled something along the lines of “This is the kind of music that makes people want to end their lives.” I did a literal LOL-the kind of full-bodied laughing out loud that can be dangerous when you are driving.
She was referring to the genre and not the lyrics.
’Cause, c’mon…who could be disgruntled about the lyrics to Brad Paisley’s She’s Everything?
Maybe a little cheesy, but a sweet love song where a man describes very specific things about the woman he loves.
And who doesn’t want specifics?
It reminded me of a recent conversation I’d had with Jason, a friend I’ve known for about a decade. Although I no longer run in the same circles as Jason and his lovely wife Delta (who am I kidding? I don’t run in ANY circles these days…it’s more like hobbling around the geriatric ward…)
Though I don’t see much of Jason and Delta these days, we keep in touch – mostly via Facebook. To those who know ’em, the Harmons have missed their calling. Jason is a Senior Associate at BrighLine CPAs and Assoicates, Inc. and in recent years Delta has joined “that” group with the oxymoronic title of Stay-at-Home-Mom.
But really they shoulda been an on-the-road Improv Comedy Team.
They. Are. That. Funny.
Some of the funniest people I know.
Individually, they are comedic entertainment at its finest.
But together? I’mcertaintheyhavecausedmorethanonepersontolosecontrolofthebladder.
They are fluent in sarcasm, hyperbole, tongue-in-cheek, off-the-cuff, quick-witted humor, and I love that about them. The world could use more intellectually funny people.
But this conversation with Jason wasn’t the usual light-hearted version.
He was quite earnest.
Our 10-year wedding anniversary is coming up on July 11. About 2 months ago, I was thinking about it and realized that it was exactly 100 days away. That gave me an idea, he wrote in a messge. I started a list called “100 Reasons.” 100 reasons why I love her, 100 things I love about her, etc. You get the idea.
Each day I share a new one with her. Some are cute and funny like “her irrational fear of dairy products,” some are complementary like “how her smile can light up a room” and some are highly intimate and personal (not going to share those with you!)
I’ve asked her about it and she loves them. She looks forward to getting a new one each day (but then again, what is she going to say, right? She could very well be counting down the days until it’s over!)
But more than that, I can’t really put into words what it has done for ME. I of course knew that I loved her with all my heart, but to be honest, coming up with ONE HUNDRED reasons why has been difficult! I thought it would be easy, but after the first 25 or so, the reasons become less obvious. It has made me really search inside my heart to find unique reasons, put into words specific feelings, and remember special times and what they REALLY meant. It has also made me pay attention to her and OBSERVE her more–to catch something in a mannerism or the content of a conversation we had that I can add to the list.
Overall, it has been one of the best things I’ve ever done. It has undoubtedly increased the depth of my love for Delta and has definitely made us closer as a couple.
I’m not sure why I’m telling you this–I certainly don’t believe that you and the HH need it. I think it’s because I know the kind of love you two have for each other and know that you would appreciate the process and ultimately the result.
I managed to persuade Jason – whose job it was to then persuade Delta – to let me share what he has been doing because I think there are a number of amazing facets to his gift that could benefit many marriages.
1. Ephesians 2:10 tells us God declares us a masterpiece, His workmanship. But we all need some specifics, some acknowledgment that there is something special about us. I can’t tell you the number of times that the HH has said “I love you” to me and I have had to ask “why?!” because all I could see was a directionally challenged midget pygmy who had once again lost her cell phone. Specifics are things we can carry with us when we are feeling unloveable. They bring out the truth that we are uniquely made by a gracious God and our spouse recognizes that.
2. A wise man will hear and increase learning. Proverbs 1:5 Wisdom includes “hearing” our spouse and continually learning more about him or her. As Jason pointed out, acknowledging 100 reasons forces us to slow down and pay attention to our loved one. “The first 25 or so” are the more obvious ones, he said – after that we have to look a little deeper. And when we search for hidden treasure, we find it. It’s an investment that pays off; when we sow into a relationship we reap the rewards.
3. Love…is not self-seeking.1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV This 100 Reasons was for Delta. Jason wasn’t posting it on Facebook for everyone else to read, (oops – sorry, friend…) he wasn’t looking for the applause of men. It was a private gift for his wife. And in the process of giving of himself, he is receiving much more back.
4. Love always perseveres 1 Corinthians 13: 7 NIV We must be purposeful and we must persevere. All too often, in the early years of marriage, when there are little people demanding time and energy, our spouse gets the leftovers. Our leftover time, our leftover energy. I don’t know about you, but I’m not a fan of leftovers. If we don’t make a very concerted effort to grow in love and appreciation, we could one day wake up to a dead relationship. Look around. It’s happening everywhere. I love Jason’s purposeful heart.
There is much more here, but I’ll leave you with a challenge. Why not give Jason’s 100 Reasons a try and see what it does for YOUR relationship?
Flowers wilt, chocolate causes weight gain…but words can bring life.
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit. Proverbs 18:21
Jason and Delta: Not Just a Comedy Act.
A beautiful inspiration, a godly example.
(Love you guys! Thanks for letting me share.)
Grateful for this wonderful life (and the awesome folks I know!),
Marie with a 🙂
I did something very similar for my husband a few years back. He was going through a very dark, emotional time and I wanted him to know how much I loved him. So I started leaving him “I love you because…” messages. I wanted to make sure that he knew everyday that someone loved him regardless of the other stuff going on in his life (brain chemistry can be wickedly tricky). I don’t know if I ever got up to 100 things, but there were quite a lot. Also, he never said so at the time, but awhile later he told me how much those notes had meant to him during that time and that he still goes back to them now and again.
I should start doing this again. Thanks for the reminder of how important it is that we let our loved ones know that they are loved for big and little things.