“I hope our sandwiches don’t spoil, I didn’t know we were driving to Seattle.” she said to her husband as we crawled forward.
“There’s a long line of planes in front of us. Can’t you figure that out?” boomed across the quiet plane.
“Yes,” came her equally quiet reply.
A part of me wilted and I looked out the window trying to physically distance from them, though we three were in the same row.
Airborne she helped adjust the volume on his headset. “Jeez! God!” exploded from him when a commercial came on. She turned it down only to later be snapped at. “I can’t hear it!”
The flight couldn’t end soon enough. Marital disrespect saddens me and I felt trapped. I prayed for the flight to end. For the wedding I was going to. For the friends I was to see. And for no more interactions that gut a person.
“So, you live in Denver or Seattle?” he asked me.
Though I had no desire to talk to this jackass, it’s hard to dodge a simple, direct question. “I’m from Denver, but I live in Beijing.”
He lit up, turns out they had spent two amazing weeks in China on a tour. And they were off and running down memory lane. They smiled at each other. They talked about the food, their tour guide, the people, reliving the glory days.
I was a bit peeved that a connection between us was made. He was no longer simply a jackass to his wife. He was also a man who babbled about China and smiled at his wife. I wanted to hold on to my two-dimensional view where he was judged and I was excused from engaging him.
But that’s not how God works. He lives and works in the three-dimensional messy world. And once again he gently invited me to see the imago dei (Image of God) in the man next to me.
What invitations have you received recently?