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Thursday, December 6, 2007

A Hot Cup of Compromise

You may be surprised to know that Pastors and their Wives do not always find themselves in perfect agreement. It can be very hard for Luke when he realizes he's wrong and I'm right. *snicker* Even worse is when the drama doesn't play out in private but rather as something akin to a freak sideshow.

Just last Wednesday, Luke and I were in the Awana office along with some friends when the subject of winning contests came up. I shared with the women how I'd won a contest at Sue's Praise and Coffee in which I'd received a Christmas CD and Godiva flavored coffee. I was still thrilled because I never win anything. Apparently no one had told Luke that there are some conversations men should just not be a part of - times when they should leave well enough alone.

Things started going downhill when he felt it necessary to correct me on the kind of coffee I had won. He piped up and told everyone, "She won some coffee alright. But it was Gevalia, not Godiva."

"Luke, it wasn't Gevalia. It was Godiva. Honey. " (You can say anything and put 'honey' on the end and still sound like you were trying to be nice.)

"Lisa. Darling. It was Gevalia because I remember thinking about Todd B. when I saw the package." (Todd B. was a college friend who drank Gevalia constantly.)

"Luke. Snookums. It was Godiva because I remember thinking 'chocolate' when I saw the package. Okay? Love ya."

"Lisa. It was Vanilla Gevalia. And I'm willing to bet on it."

"Luke. It was chocolate Godiva and you are stinkin' ON! Bring It, Preacher Man!!"

The girls in the office watched this spectacle with the zeal of being court side at Wimbledon. I'm certain nothing made them prouder of us as a ministry couple than when Luke wrote down both of our coffee guesses so we could have proof of who won the bet. Thankfully, he quit gambling long enough to go teach Bible Study while I got on the office computer to look up Sue's blog to settle the wager. (No, I didn't skip church. I work in the Awana office on Wednesday nights. :)

And there in a beautiful golden package was a picture of GODIVA coffee but, unfortunately, the flavor wasn't clear on the packaging. So at worst I was half right.

The minute Bible Study was over Luke barged into the office and said, "Well!? What kind was it?" After gloating because I was winning, we grabbed the kids and raced each other home to settle the score once and for all.

Because we are so mature like that. Definitely an inspiration to all in our church and community.

We got home, found the package and read the label together:

"Godiva Chocolatier: French Vanilla"

Shoot. Both of us only half right. We called a truce, hugged, and secretly enjoyed the fact we both had won.

Which leads me to the point of this tale: In relationships, it really is okay to only be a little correct. To accept black instead of white. To refrain from imposing night on another's day. There is nothing that would have been more fun than to wag my fingers in my ears and sing, "Na Na Na Boo Boo" if I had been completely right about the coffee but I can honestly say it was much more rewarding - not to mention age-appropriate - to be able to say, "We were both right."

The Apostle Paul agreed when he wrote in Philippians 2:3-4:

"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others."

So what is to gain by yielding? I believe we can find an answer in Luke 14:10 - 11:

"But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say to you, ‘Friend, move up to a better place.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all your fellow guests. 11 For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

And here is the divine paradox - the lower we go the higher we get. However, the exaltation we seek is not one that lords us over one another but instead seats us at the right hand of our Lord. This is also the spirit that will prevent our saying, "I told you so" even when we are in the right.

So I thank you, Sue. I'm certain you had no idea your contest would contribute to my spiritual life. I also have to thank the Apostle Paul. Who knew his inspired words would be used to settle a coffee dispute and to humble two servants who'd gotten way too big for their britches?

Please visit my personal blog, The Preacher's Wife.

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Blogger Wendell said...

A wonderful reminder of not getting too big for our britches! Thankyou for sharing.

December 5, 2007 at 9:12 PM  
Blogger PJ said...

Great post! Love the honesty. It's so sad when ministry couple try to front the perfection thing. Somehow it just doesn't ring true. Yet, the pressure to appear perfect is great. I think I've sustained too much pressure over 40+ years of ministry. The cracks, along with the wrinkles, are just there. Thank God, He has sufficient Grace for us all!!

December 5, 2007 at 11:00 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

You are a blessing.

December 6, 2007 at 12:10 AM  
Anonymous Monique @ said...

This was such a great piece, I could just see you two racing home to check the package. Thank you for the lesson too, that is something we need to keep in mind !!!!
Have a great day.

December 6, 2007 at 5:49 AM  
Blogger Sue @ Praise and Coffee said...

That is too funny!!
It's probably a good thing that I will be giving away STARBUCKS's this time!

Great post!

December 6, 2007 at 7:22 AM  
Blogger A Stone Gatherer said...

Oh boy Lisa, this article is timely. I have been so discouraged lately because of issues dealing with this very subject. It spoke to my heart! God is Good! He is answering my prayers by showing me his wonderful Word!!!

December 6, 2007 at 8:03 AM  
Blogger Sharon said...

That was great. I could totally picture the whole scene.
Love the lessons learned and the fact that even though Paul did not know it He was talking about Coffee.:)
I love when Beth Moore says-you are going to have to go(on your knees) down to get up.

December 6, 2007 at 8:05 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

Oh, how I wish I knew you both in real life! How fun you sound! :)

Thanks for the smile this morning...

December 6, 2007 at 8:16 AM  
Blogger Lynn Donovan said...


Girl this is hilarious.... You made me laugh out loud and giggle through the entire article.

Great writing and girl, you are a wonderful example of living our your faith and sharing it with the rest of us. Love you so much, Lynn

December 6, 2007 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger Mindy said...

Yes - been there and done that . However, K and I don't usually use the sweet terms of just sounds uglier from us.
And I really do hate it when it's in front of others. Nothing is more humbling than to here a parishoner say "I'm glad that the preacher and his wife are just like us."
Clearly we are ones to be looked up to......

December 6, 2007 at 9:00 AM  
Blogger Susan Kelly Skitt said...

Oh my goodness, I just came here via Sue's site and I'm so glad.

That could have been a "conversation" between me and my dear hubby! Thank you for helping me once again see my need for humility. God's been working on me in this area and I have so much more room to grow and learn...

December 6, 2007 at 10:35 AM  
Blogger Heather@Mommymonk said...

Lisa - you are too funny! I really enjoyed this devotional. First, it was born out of honesty and second, you brought a necessary truth to light in a real situation. Isn't it great how God works through coffee? :)

December 6, 2007 at 11:53 AM  
Blogger lori said...


NEXT time...PLEASE get someone to video it...we would LOVE to see it on Utube....

How do you do it time and time again...
I am LAUGHING OUTLOUD..(to the point that people filter in to see WHAT is so funny:) and THEN BAM..I get the message for the day!
you amaze me girl!
seriously,that was one of your BEST...

December 6, 2007 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger Mob said...

Love your post. This happens with me and my husband too. It is hard not to say I told you so.

December 6, 2007 at 1:55 PM  
Blogger Jenileigh said...

You know I really needed to hear this. Your writing is so good too, it keeps me enthralled to the very end. I'm glad you both won by the way. This was good, really good. Thanks for sharing.

December 6, 2007 at 3:55 PM  
Blogger As We Sail... said...

I've never heard of Godiva coffee, but Gevalia is THE best, mmmmm.

December 7, 2007 at 2:35 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

I have to say I LOVE this real...I could see myself and my hubby in this scenario...such a great lesson, thanks for sharing.
Blessings from Canada!

December 7, 2007 at 8:03 AM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

Oh how funny you are girl! I can just see you two staring each other down thinking "I'm right!" and then getting home to find you both were right! Loved the scripture. Fits perfect! Was a blessing for me today. Thanks!

December 7, 2007 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger Laurel Wreath said...

Oh Lisa I love this story!!! Off to have some coffe now, for some reason this post made me thirsty, hehe =)

God bless.

December 7, 2007 at 11:45 AM  
Blogger Mel's World said...


That sounds just like a conversation that my husband (also a Pastor) and I would have.

Thanks for the "gentle" reminder that we should always think of ourselves less often.


December 7, 2007 at 12:12 PM  
Blogger Deb said...

Lisa, great post!! thanks for being so REAL!!

December 7, 2007 at 8:40 PM  
Blogger StitchinByTheLake said...

I've been married nearly 44 years and we still have that kind of "conversation" and it's still best when we're both right. :) Or if I'm right. :) Blessings, Marlene

July 9, 2008 at 8:47 AM  

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