Apparently being Matthew Byrd’s wife isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Let me explain.
I was given the task to update our cellphones. Like a good little housewifey, I did my research to choose phones and the best deal for those phones. That led me to Radio Shack with my three children this morning.
Note: Did you hear what I just said?…”Radio Shack…three children.” Have you ever tried to make a serious purchase with three kids? Three kids who want to ask questions, want to touch everything in the store, one of which likes to hover over you while you ask your important questions to the sales rep? Are you starting to get the picture? Can you feel my eye starting to twitch?
So everything seems to be going smoothly. But once again, things are not as they seem. As Pablo was beginning the purchase procedure, he needed my cell phone provider information to pull up my account. That’s when he began to sensitively explain that Radio Shack, being a third-party, could not sell me any phones because my husband’s name was the only one on the account. Although he had my driver’s license that showed I was clearly his wife, I could not make any purchasing decisions on that account. He recommended that I called my husband and ask him to call the provider to add my name to the account.
How humiliating. There I was in Radio Shack with three children, calling my husband in the middle of his job as a school teacher, because I was impotent to upgrade my own cellphone or my daughter’s. I’ve been bearing his name now for fifteen years, and yet I was being treated like a second class citizen. Of course Matt was horrified, apologetic, and called to make the changes right away. No matter, the computer system at Radio Shack was not updating these new changes. My husband works in another state, 45 minutes away. It’s not like he can just take a teaching break to buy some phones. I would have to return hours later when the computers updated to make my purchase.
That’s when my bewildered children began the next flow of questions. Matt had just given them a speech about how their mom and dad were one flesh (after my oldest daughter announced over dinner that she will not be allowing her future husband in the delivery room—long story). If God recognizes this, and he designed it so, why did Pablo at Radio Shack fail to get the memo? Apparently, cell phone contracts are not covered in my legal union with Matt.
The fact is, I represent two different men—Matt and Jesus Christ—everywhere I go. I’ve got two unions going on. My union with Christ is also based on judicial ground. But in this even greater union, my name is already written down in his account—and it covers everything, all the time. Everything he has is mine! And my justification is only the beginning. Although I am not face to face with my groom as I wait for our consummation, he’s even closer to me than Matt is when we lay our heads together at night. I love how Michael Horton puts it in his book, The Christian Faith:
What a wondrous thing it is that even though Jesus Christ has been exalted to the throne of God, absent from us in the flesh, we may nevertheless only now be united to him in a manner far more intimate than the fellowship enjoyed by the disciples with Jesus during his earthly ministry. Having united himself to us in our flesh, in our sins, in our suffering and death, he now unites us to himself in his new-creation life by his Spirit (587).
There are just some things that my wonderful husband Matt can’t do for me. My eternal husband has descended to unite himself to me in my sinful flesh as a surety for my life. Christ substituted himself for his beloved, rendering full satisfaction to God on our behalf, doing and suffering for us everything that the law required. All the more, in giving us his Spirit, we are united to him in our new life of righteousness. And our beloved Jesus gives us all we need as he has opened the way into the holy of holies. Amazing grace!
I’ll admit it was embarrassing to be so dependent on Matt for such a silly little transaction in Radio Shack—but what a picture of my other union, where my Husband gives me the faith to cling to him in every circumstance. For that I am so grateful.