Child in a Manger: Chapter 8
At Allison’s house, our young couple (Well, Brock is young. Allison is thirty-five, and thus ancient.) goes all Charlie Brown Thanksgiving on Christmas dinner, having canned ravioli and carrot sticks and toast.
Admittedly, it’s pretty cute.
They flirt a bit (and by “a bit,” I mean “about one-twentieth the amount that a couple should be flirting under these circumstances”), and then, of course, they get to talking about God and how he plans things.
Allison’s Martyr Complex Alert!
“Do you ever think that sometimes we’re put in situations for a purpose, even when we don’t understand what it is?” [Allison asked]
Brock swallowed and tried not to wonder if she’d been reading his mind. “You mean does God put us there?” He waited for her nod before he added, “I don’t know.”
“Don’t you think He intended our lives to cross with Joy’s?” She didn’t mention two other lives that had crossed, but it was understood.
“Does that also mean God planned for the baby’s mother to leave her in a stable?” He watched as her relaxed posture tightened, and he shook his head. “Even I don’t believe that. Not really.”
Her smile returned…
Boy, for a minute there, Brock almost disagreed with Allison on a point of theology! Like those horrid unbelievers who harass the poor woman on a daily basis.
(Is it just me, or do these repeated attempts at martyrdom make Allison’s faith seem really weak? She just can’t stand to hear one syllable of a possibility that God might be less than she would like to think he is.)
I get that this is the whole free will thing, but if God’s omniscient and omnipotent, how did he not plan for Joy to be abandoned? I mean, if he is omniscient and omnipotent, he knew it was going to happen, and he could do something about that, but didn’t bother.
(Omniscience is a paradox anyway, but we’ll leave that aside for the moment.)
But yeah, yeah, God meant it for good. Just like with Joseph.
They compare notes on their romantic pasts: Brock laughs off his ex-girlfriend, Robin, who cheated on him. (At least he admits to himself that the cheating is a big part of the reason he is a crappy cop who doesn’t listen to women. Okay, he doesn’t put it quite like that, but you get the point.)
But Allison gets all sad-puppy-eyed and explains that she believes God called her to a life of being single forever.
They stand by the window, staring out at the snow, and I guess Brock finds sadness attractive, because he kisses her.
Okay, it’s a bit romantic. A bit.
But, of course, given the chance to kiss him instead of talking him to death…
…Allison breaks the magical moment and loads the dishwasher. Brock is understandably hurt, and beats cheeks outta there as quickly as he can.
(By the way, lest anyone think that I’m a hedonistic atheist who thinks that a scene can’t be romantically sexy unless clothes are ripped off, one of the sexiest scenes I can think of involves two fully clothed characters…)
Damn, It’s a Wonderful Post, I guess…