I asked if he would do something for me. His lightning-fast response was, “Yes”. I think my head snapped back at his answer. Startled and chuckling, I murmured something about wishing I had asked for ten grand or a new car. He did not flinch. Just sat there smiling, waiting for my request. His response stayed with me all through the movie I later went to see, and all through dinner, and it was my first thought upon waking from a Sunday afternoon nap.
I racked my brain, but could not remember the last time I had asked someone for a favor and they responded in the affirmative before hearing the specifics. Most folks, including myself, present a caveat -- “if I can”, “depends on what it is” -- and understandably so.
Why didn’t he?
Yes, he is family; spiritual family. I’d call him a nephew. He is also a colleague; we occasionally work together. We’ve watched each other grow and evolve and are acquainted with one another’s gifts and frailties. We have a good and real relationship, but not the kind that would make me expect such an unqualified response. He is a shrewd businessman and the type of husband who honors his wife in a tangible way. Really, you could cut it with a knife. I consider him a heavyweight and would not have been the least bit offended if he had asked for specifics before considering my request.
Why didn’t he?
I was baffled by this gesture that made me feel so respected and so cared for and so valued and so beautiful and so necessary and so trusted and so honorable and, well…so loved that an unqualified yes was the answer he chose to give. And did not take back.