By Shane Kahkola
I never dreamed it could be true, but it is. My portly body is actually an object of my wife's affection. Who would have thought that a bowling ball with legs would be sexually appealing to my lovely bride? But I have discovered that it isn't just my Brunswick figure.
Iíd heard that women have a strange thing about their husbands, underwear, and vacuum cleaners. I figured I would give it a try. So one night, when Lynn was out late with her friends, I got everything ready. The mood music was playing, the house was clean and the dishes were done. With everything in place, I quickly dressed--or shall I say, dressed-down for the occasion.
Now before you go freaky on me, I was still clothed--somewhat. I managed to wrestle the vacuum cleaner away from the breakfast nook and then sat down on the couch with the lights low, waiting for Lynnís friends to drop her off.
We donít have a window in our front door, nor do we have a storm door. I prayed with everything in me that my wife would not choose this night to invite her friends into the house. I'm not sure I would have recovered from the embarrassment of being seen in nothing but my Hanes unmentionables.
After quick, repeated prayers, I saw lights through the dining room window. It was time.
I took my place with my hand on the vacuum cleaner handle. Then it hit me--this wouldn't be realistic if I didn't actually have the dumb thing plugged-in. I quickly connected it to the wall and took my place again.
Eagerly I waited to hear the key in the door.
I waited, waited and waited.
Then, just as I was wondering what was going on, I heard it. I was so excited! I turned-on the cleaner and began vacuuming the living room in my tighty-whiteys.
That was when Lynn walked in.
I would like to say that she dropped everything and attacked me--but she didn't. I wanted that dreamy look in her eye that said, "Let's prove we're married." Instead, she laughed at me! I couldn't believe it. I thought I might have preferred one of her friends to walk in on me instead. At least that laughter wouldn't have felt so much like rejection.
She put her arms around me and said, "I bet I know what you want."
I was shocked. I thought for sure it would be a mystery. I turned off the vacuum cleaner feeling dejected.
Lynn looked at me--still laughing, I might add--and said, "Baby, I love you so much!" Then she kissed me.
Apparently it isn't the actual "husband vacuuming in his underwear" that turns her on. It's more the cleaning part.
What?! She is "moved" by the cleaning. I think you know you have moved into a more pathetic state in life when you will stoop to vacuuming in your underwear to please your wife. Then again, I guess that is no more pathetic than your wife being turned-on by the fact that you cleaned the house.
There is so much to discover in a marriage. How does she tick? What does he like? Doesn't she know she can't cook like my mother? Hasn't he figured out the laundry basket is two more feet to the left?
Things like that are commonplace, but do you know what she really likes? Are you aware of what it is that makes him feel like a real man?
See, I was trying to please Lynn to get what I wanted. I wasn't really concerned about what would actually please her. Consequently, things didn't go as planned. There have been many times like that. I will often show my selfishness by "staging" those touching moments--not that those moments can't be planned. They need to be planned. In fact, we all need to practice planning those special moments for our spouses. Not for our benefit, but for theirs.
Here's an exercise for you. Tomorrow, try being a servant to your spouse.
I can already hear the women reading this saying, "Wait a minute buster! I slave for this man all day long. Not only that, I take care of the kids and I work a full-time job. Don't talk to me about being a servant. You do his laundry sometime. Those stains don't come out by themselves you know."
But I am not talking about slavery. I'm not talking about your every day duties. When did you last stand up from the couch and say, "Babe, can I get you anything?"
Wives, when did you make him king for a day? Husbands, when did you make her feel like a queen?
Men, when was the last time you brought your wife breakfast in bed? Ladies, when did he last hear you offer to put away the "honey-do" list so that he could just rest?
I'm not talking about slavery. I'm talking about going above and beyond the mundane daily duties of life.
When I choose to have Lynn's best interest in mind, without expecting anything in return, I am surprised by the rewards I reap. She's like a bank account--I have to invest in order to make a withdrawal. But in this case, my investment needs to be one-sided. I need to give and give, without expecting in return.
When Jesus died on the cross, He gave to us without expecting that we be perfect, or that we endure what He did. It was a sweet gift that compelled me to love Him more.
Your spouse needs the same thing. They need the sweet gift to be given without regard to self. What will you give them today? Is it the day off from the "honey-do" list? Is it the day off from house cleaning?
Now back to my "brief cleaning" account. It happened that I was cleaning the house some days later--yes, in my tighty-whiteys--when Lynn kept staring me down. I almost felt a little uncomfortable. I would catch her following me around with a wry smile on her face.
Not knowing what was going on, I finally blurted out, "What?!"
She simply walked up to me and said, "You're pretty sexy you know."
I looked down at the bowling ball attached to my mid-section and was thoroughly confused. It turns out that my wife loves to see me cleaning. She actually found me physically attractive when I vacuumed in my underwear for no reason other than to be nice to her. Hey, it was well worth it!
Shane Kahkola and his wife, Lynn, have been married for 13 years. They have four children--Gabriella, Leah, Gavin and Evan. Shane is a former pastor who resides in Marion, Indiana, where he works as a computer programmer. Shane will be returning to school to pursue the ministry in fall 2006.