Last night I had practice for the worship band at Centerpoint Church. This Sunday, three of the four songs we’re playing are from Michael Gungor. I don’t know a lot about the guy. He writes quality stuff, but has an odd penchant for syncopation and odd seven counts. It reminds of this time we were lifting very heavy things into the Here Today trailer, and Chip and Daubert (or it may have been Bryan, but I’m going to move forward with the story as if it were Daubert) were lifting something, probably a guitar case since it takes two of those weaklings to lift a guitar case. Anyway, Chip goes, “Okay, on the count of five.” Daubert leaned down to pick up the case. Chip started counting, “One, two, three,” and Daubert lifted. Chip did not. Daubert strained his poor back and stumbled backwards and said, “YOU DIDN’T LIFT!” Chip said, “I said on the count of five.” Daubert said, “WHO COUNTS TO FIVE?”
Seriously. Who counts to five? When have you ever lifted on anything other than the count of three? Michael Gungor counts to seven.
That is not the point of this blog. At practice, my teenaged friend, Cameron, presented a cake to another one of my teenaged friends, Kimber, with the question, “Will you be my girlfriend?” written in icing. Cam didn’t make the cake. That was done by another (not teenaged) friend, Molly. Molly; Cameron’s sister, Shelbi; Cameron’s parents, Tim and Karla; Molly’s husband, Tommy; Cameron’s friend, Richard; and I watched Kimber’s face as she responded. She said yes.
Later, while I was driving Kimber home, she informed me that Cameron’s cake-based girlfriend proposal was a cool gesture, maybe even a little romantic, if a little crazy that it was done in front of such a huge audience (which included parents). Kimber brought the cake home to show her sisters. I have not yet learned of the cake’s fate or her sisters’ responses. Pictures of the cake, etc. are on my Facebook page in the Mobile Uploads. Feel free to view and comment.
I’m married. I chased Becky like Chris Glass chases burglars, with a singular purpose: capture her. I didn’t want to put her in jail, like Chris (a cop) does with burglars. I wanted her heart. We wore out the soles of our shoes walking through College Heights as I tried to convince her with logic that dating me would be a good idea. Throughout our dating relationship, I continued the chase, convincing her with actions and words that I am worth staying with, and ultimately that I am worth committing her life to. I proposed in front of a very large crowd at a Here Today show, on Valentine’s day, on a stage strewn with flowers, after the song Flowers Aside, which I wrote for her a year prior.
We got married, and I was no longer in pursuit, per se. I know and have always known though that just because I got the girl doesn’t mean I can give up the chase. It’s like when you get into a relationship, you have to give up the old chase for a new chase…and man, I suck at keeping up the fun of the chase. I think I do romantic things sometimes. I try to serve her. Her love language is acts of service, and I really think I’m getting better at that: cleaning up the room, making the bed (even when she’s away), folding laundry, doing other chores for her or just to make her more comfortable. But the gooey romantic stuff like making a cake with some special message, well, it’s faded like old (or designer) jeans. I don’t think she suffers from the lack, but I know she would enjoy the presence of it.
Some relationships fall apart when the excitement of the chase is gone. Once the relationship starts, the chaser may crave the excitement of the chase or the chased may crave the doting attention they received during the chase. It is a shame when the relationship falls apart post-marriage because of this or leads to something damaging like unfaithfulness. Sometimes unfaithfulness is a symptom of the craving for the chase. It’s not that the unfaithful don’t love their partner, they just crave the chase.
I don’t need the chase, but I do enjoy it. There have been seasons of gooey, romantic excitement in my marriage, but mostly due to chance rather than intentional behavior. I think I really need to start focusing on being more intentional, being more gooey. It’s not enough to have “date nights.” I go out to dinner with my guy friends. I think the gooey romance, as cheesy as it feels and can be, is really fun and can really up that adrenaline feeling that went with the chase.
Anyone want to help keep me accountable for doing something cheesy or gooey romantic at least once a month?