I hear the soft thunk of the hard cover against the table. Its early and my back is turned, making coffee before I have small ones to feed. I turn and see him pulling up his chair - the one at the head of the table. There in front of his bowl of dry cereal he opens the cover and sifts through the pages. Finding his place, he scoops a heap of cereal onto his spoon and eats. Daily Bread.
When we got married, we had a nice little reception. In true Dutch Christian Reformed fashion, we had a meal followed by a nice little program. My Dad emceed much of it – telling jokes and amusing stories. Then it was time for the bride and groom to thank the people. So there we stood – so young. He with so much more hair. Me with so much less weight. It was a small miracle to his friends and family that he was getting married. This one who didn’t talk much. He had always been a quiet boy when it came to girls. Many sitting in the tables in the long rows before us were probably still scratching their heads with wonder and confusion. But he grabbed the microphone. The quiet one grabbed the microphone and began to speak.
I don’t remember all of what he said. He thanked the people for coming. And then he said some stuff, the details of which have now faded away. But the one phrase stuck, “Christ will be the center of our home”. Over the years, in some of the dark times, I have wondered what those words meant. I have wondered if he remembered them. I have wondered why he said them. I have wondered how many times he looks at me and feels like I didn’t hear those words.
I’ve had an ugly week. For no good reason I found myself in a bit of a funk. Making it out of my pajamas each day has been a chore. I haven’t made myself look nice in several days. And the ritual I have been striving to make into a habit, the one of sitting down to have my own Daily Bread, fell to the wayside for the first time since Madison was born. The Word had not been served at my breakfast in several days. I wasn’t angry or sad or frustrated. I was distracted and apathetic.
I click the coffee maker on and see the red light telling me its doing its thing. I look up to see his head in his hands, munching and crunching away as he reads.
It hasn’t always been this way. Daily Bread hasn’t always been “daily”. But recently, I’ve noticed, the Word has been open in front of him more and more frequently.
This morning he reads.
This morning he doesn’t ask me if I’ve read.
This morning he doesn’t make a big show of reading the Word.
This morning he doesn’t even notice me noticing.
This morning he simply reads. This morning he leads by example without even realizing it.
This morning, for the first time this week, I read.
And in this season of thankfulness, I am so thankful that he reads.