Two little boys scramble through dusk, skip down sidewalks, then fight to be the first to open the car door. Socks become soaking wet from sprinklers and bother them not one bit. Who has time for shoes in the thrill of chivalry?
Laughter echoes through the cooling air and eventually, they return out of breath; shoulders high and grinning ear to ear. “We kept the girls safe”, reports the younger and reaches out with sticky hands for a high five. Just as self-satisfied, the older locks the front door behind me and flicks away the light from the porch.
What is it to serve another that raises chins in pride; that to provide protection causes hearts to swell? Is it a surprise that superheroes abound and knights slay dragons in the world of boys? That responsibility should suggest that one is needed, appreciated even?
Just months ago we sat around a restaurant dinner table as young girls arrived in succession, beautifully dressed and adorned for prom. “Princesses…”, the older whispered in my ear in awe. “They. Are. So. Pretty”. He could not bring himself to look away.
He is being taught to hold the door…an outward expression of inward respect and admiration. Dreaded is the day that another’s young girl stomps a foot to the ground or pushes past with an elbow to the chest to inform mine that “she can do it herself.” That day will come as surely as the sun rises.
Just as did mine all those years ago.
It will convey that he is not needed and that his simple gesture of love is unappreciated, not of much worth. Yet his action will speak nothing about her ability, for he will assuredly understand that she is capable of simply opening a door. In fact, he will believe that she is capable of all things magic, things which come naturally to those called princess.
Girls, we can open doors. We can mow lawns, and change oil, or read a manual to bring life to complicated electronics. The question is not whether or not we are able. We are.
Someday soon, a little boy wearing a man’s body is going to try to come alongside of you. In love, in service, and in help. He will open the door and stand proudly at his post, waiting for you to notice.
Please let him.
"Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself." Ephesians 5:25-28
Questions to pray about:
1. What beliefs did your family instill in you regarding how men and women show respect for one another?
2. Are they beneficial or a hindrance to your relationships now that you are an adult? Which beliefs are reinforced by the Bible? Which ones are not?
3. In what areas could you allow your husband or boyfriend to show his love for you more deeply?
Photo Credit: David Olkarny, Unsplash
M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy. Earns Crossfit participation trophies. Disaster cook. Enthusiastic wife. #Boymom. Clutches her faith, not her pearls.