Making it Practical

If I were to try to share many of the blessings of my few days away for pastoral family retreat, I would probably start gushing like Old Faithful. Wow. Had a chance to connect with a ministerial leader one on one about spiritual retreats. This is one of my favorite, though unfortunately not often practiced, of the spiritual disciplines. He also shared with me a getting started on spiritual retreat kit, so I have no excuse. Is there time? There is never enough time, but I will make time for what I truly value.

In the midst of all of these great presentations that focused heavily on family – pastors take care of your families – came a very practical application. Pastor Rigacci was assigned the task of speaking about making improvements. We could all relate to his charming story of how he and his wife never argued when they were dating, but somehow after they were married, they found many things to have strong discussions about.

What none of us were prepared for was his very practical demonstration. Pastor Rigacci shared very personally about how one of the arguments that keeps resurfacing in their home centers around his moustache. He keeps it neat and trimmed. His wife wants it gone. I quickly gave Mrs. Rigacci my condolences. I do not like kissing facial hair. I want to kiss my husband’s lips. I appreciate him keeping his face clean shaven, but the truth is – he wants the kisses! I’m not sure what Mrs. Rigacci’s reasons were for wanting her husband to be clean shaven, but I was on her side.

I was too slow with my iPhone to get Mrs. Rigacci’s jaw dropping stare as she watched her husband, from his position of being on the platform in front of all of his peers, reach under the pulpit he was speaking from and pull out a razor and a small towel. She was soon on her feet clamoring for a position in the center aisle with all of the other smart phone cameras to catch the historic moment. When he was clean shaven, she practically jumped onto the platform and planted two big kisses on him.

It was a simple thing, but it was demonstrated to us all that sometimes the most loving thing we can do is make an improvement that will please our spouse. Did this practical demonstration have any impact? On the way home from the retreat, my husband asked me what was his “moustache.” I had to think about it and I told him what it was and he has promised to do something about it. I think he’s hoping to be rewarded with kisses as well. That can definitely be arranged.


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