The Date God Planned

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Last week was a rough one for me. Three days of attempted potty training left me behind on laundry, cleaning, and everything else. On top of that, Baby #2 has been gifting us with lots of hormones that make Mommy very emotional. So it was a long, tiring, emotional week.

My sweet husband wanted to do something special for me this weekend and hatched some secret plans while I was getting ready for the day on Saturday. We spent the whole morning out grocery shopping, and came home to a hurried lunch. Afterward, we got back in the car to go visit some friends at the hospital who had a baby on Friday.

Now, to understand my surprise and Dan’s enjoyment of this part of the day, you have to know a little bit about me and directions. I’m not terrible with directions, I just don’t pay attention. If I drive somewhere or see directions on a map or written down, I can get to where I need to go. Mostly though, I just depend on GUPS (which is what we call our GPS). Dan is great with directions and is super independent on top of that, so he would rather get somewhere on his own than use a GPS anyway. So, for that reason and a few others, Dan is the primary driver in our household. And I happily keep him company from my passenger seat, paying little to no attention to where we are going or how we are getting there.

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This brought Dan much delight as we headed to the hospital, passed the hospital exit and kept on going, took a different exit, pulled into a parking lot, and stopped. I thought we were just turning around. So, when Dan asked, “Do you want a brownie?” I was a little confused. Of course, I said, “yes”, because I’ve been craving brownies for the past few weeks, but didn’t understand why he was asking me this, now, and why he parked in the parking lot that wasn’t the hospital. Dan practically had to explain what was going on before I figured out that he has planned to take me to Zingerman’s Bakehouse to get me one of the best brownies in Ann Arbor (according to Google) and spend a little time on a mini-dessert-date before going to visit our friends and their new baby at the hospital. Oh.

Not all plans work out the way we expect, though, and we didn’t actually have time to do anything but buy the brownie and get back in the car. Oh well. I saved it and figured we could eat it together after Lydia went to bed. We visited our friends, the day ended far too quickly, and we tucked Lydia in for the night. We settled down in the living room and shared our brownie and I got ready for a nice long talk. Minutes later, Dan fell asleep and I was left alone on the couch feeling pouty and miserable. Other than the super-delicous brownie, our attempts a date has completely failed (in my late-night-pregnancy-induced-emotional-opinion)

By Sunday, I was able to move beyond my disappointment and enjoy the day. We didn’t get Lydia tucked in to bed until almost 9:00 and sat down to watch just an inning or two of baseball before going to bed early ourselves.

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But then we started talking. And somehow some random questions about baseball and the related commercials turned into our sharing memories from elementary school and high school. After telling stories we’d never told each other before, we marveled at how it was that we ever ended up together. We were SO different. It was one of those happy and confirming moments when you realize that God had worked something out in a way contrary to logical expectation or even our own best plans. An “inning or two” turned into one hour turned which turned into two, and somewhere along there we turned the baseball off anyway. Around midnight we decided that it was far past our bed times.

Somewhere during that conversation I thought to myself,” I feel like we’re on a date”, just like some of the ones when we were getting to know each other before we were married. Only this was better because at the end we got to pray together and go to sleep and wake up, all without having to say goodbye.

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And so, after a long week, and a somewhat failed date-attempt on Dan’s part (except for the successful surprise and the delicious brownie) God blessed us with our own little date-night, unexpected and unplanned. And we both walked away thinking, “I’m going to be so tired tomorrow” but also “We should do this more”. And it’s moments like these that I can’t help but smile, knowing in my head and in my heart that God really is a sweet Father who loves to give us good gifts.

Proverbs 19:21
Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.

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