Mark Me as Present

“The Lord did for Sarah what he had promised.” (Genesis 21:1)

It was the year that Abraham turned 100. How many years had Abram and Sarai been together? There is no way we can project that couple into this age of marriage enrichment and Focus on the Family. Abraham may have been a man of faith, but he needed to attend a Gary Smalley marriage seminar. Remember, that Yahweh spoke to Abram, but did not reveal Himself to Sarah. How did the couple converse about that? There was that episode when Sarah suggested her husband have a child with the hired help. I know it was the custom of the day, but it didn’t turn out well for anyone. Then the trip into Egypt when Abram deceived Pharoah and later Abimilech by saying, “She’s my sister—sure you can put her in the harem.” That couple went through a lot and in most of it Sarah didn’t get to vote. It was her son that Abraham took to the mountain to sacrifice. What did Abram say to Isaac’s mother, “Oh. Going? Well, we’re going fishing for a couple of days.”

A friend was at a weekend conference for Millennials. One of her observations of the young teens: “…their absence in all things in the present because they’re always on their devices.”

That is not problem for one generation. I wonder if Abram and Sarai enjoyed sexual intimacy or if the act was goal-oriented wrapped around the pregnancy test. “Someday, when….”

Absence in all things in the present.

“Just wait. When we….” Get the new house. Retire. When we pay off the credit card debt. Get through the Christmas season. Go on vacation. Get past Mom’s illness. Plus exactly 11,003 other things. Some students suggest that Abraham and Sarah were alienated in their older years—no I’m mean when they were really old! Not in the child-bearing years when they were about 100.

Goal-oriented people, visionaries and driven people must pay attention or they are absent to all things but the goal, dream, what needs to be done in the next five minutes to stay on schedule and on track.

A lady told us she was filing for divorce. I asked her what she expected her husband’s reaction would be. She said—“Shocked! He doesn’t have a clue.” He had been “absent in all things present” for years.

Being present means:

  1. Look into people’s eyes
  2. Put down mobile devices
  3. Listen and repeat what you have heard
  4. Touch the person as they talk—(if appropriate)
  5. You can figure something out

Husbands who intentionally say goodbye to their wives as they leave the house, have a prayer with them and/or kiss:

  1. Miss less work due to illness
  2. Have fewer accidents on way to work and on the job
  3. Make 20% more money
  4. Live 5 years longer than those who rush out of the house each day neglecting the “benediction.”


©2015 D. Dean Benton Twitter: @DeanBenton.

Writer, Wonderer, Working on Present

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