The Story of Tony & Kimberly


Closeup portrait of a romantic happy young African American couple

INTRODUCTION: Small differences can produce massive disruptions, but quality communication heals relation!                     

Tony and Kimberly were two wonderfully saved sanctified young people who met each other at a church social gathering.  The two felt an awesome connection for each other.  They soon became great friends. And before long, they were courting each other.  They dated for two years, enjoying spiritual time at the church, and spending lots of time hanging out.  One night, Tony popped the question.  Falling on his knee before Kimberly at a public restaurant, he took out a gorgeous ring, and said, “Will you marry me?”  Kimberly was in tears, but she managed to finally say, “Yes! YES!” with an overwhelming amount of joy and gladness.  And so they married at the wonderful age of 21, and felt that the Lord Jesus Christ had placed His seal of approval on their marriage.

marriage1Now that they were married; having never been in a relationship with anyone else, they were soon destined to discover the different levels of being in love.  At the present moment, they were in the infatuation stage, where it was virtually impossible to find any fault in the other person; for each of them had characteristics which the other would never tolerate under different circumstances; but while in the presence of their mate, was willing to overlook such peculiarities, with the confidence that their mate would transform to their way of thinking in future settings.

Kimberly enjoyed being around lots of people and loud noise, and so she would joyfully invite Tony to many of her friends’ church social gatherings, where fun games were played, upbeat youthful church music was heard, and good food demolished.  However, Tony detested going to such events, but he did make exceptions for Kimberly due to that crazy love he had for her. Tony usually found happiness in quiet places, and would often invite Kimberly to come with him to the park, take a  stroll down the riverwalk, and sit at the quiet side of the beach, while listening to the waves of the sea and the sound of the sweet breeze. Kimberly, however, had a strong aversion to such places, but while in the presence of Tony, it was a beautiful place to be.


A couple disputeFive years later, that wonderful infatuation they had for each other had wore off.  The true test of love was now in session. The desire to be themselves were dominating their thoughts, and they were determined to win the other to their way of thinking.  Their ability to tolerate each other’s typical view of fun activities had come to an end.  Each of them resolved to train the other into a civilized spouse.  But that became a futile task.

a couple dispute-2The situation eventually came down to Tony encouraging Kimberly to go have fun with her friends at their church social gatherings without him.  He wanted her to have fun, but he didn’t want to spoil her fun by coming along as a non-participating irritated subject.  Kimberly also agreed to allow Tony to freely go and enjoy his quiet time at the lake.  She knew how much he enjoyed sitting on the riverbank listening to the waters and enjoying the sounds of nature. She didn’t want to spoil his fun by coming along and daydreaming of how wonderful it would be if she could turn that quiet place into a party zone.

The unfortunate measure of this arrangement was the fact that both of them were spending time at places they enjoyed the most, without the benefit of having the one they loved the most.  This compromise, although thoughtful in one point of view, was actually detrimental to the relationship.  They were beginning to grow apart.  It was a very uncomfortable feeling. Most of their fun activities were done outside the relationship, and the bed room was the only place they found fun; and even that was becoming compromised by the disagreements which permeated the environment of the relationship.

two men sitting & talkingOne day, Tony was sitting at a park, when a stranger decided to make himself welcomed on the bench which Tony sat on.  The stranger also felt the freedom to get in Tony’s business, “Why you lookin’ all down man?” the stranger said. “What’s up with you?” Tony answered and said, “I don’t know, man!  My wife just be trippin’!….  I’ve been trying to get her to come to the park and enjoy some peace of mind,…  listen to the water,… walk around the grass,… and romantic stuff like that, you know?  But all she wants, is to party.  Well, actually she goes to these church social gatherings, but it’s just another way of calling it a party for Christians.  I’ve been trying to get her away from that stuff, so she could enjoy some peace of mind like I do, but it’s just not clicking with her, and I can’t stand going to those church parties, it’s annoyingly loud and congested.” 

The stranger didn’t bother giving Tony any advice, but simply asked him one question, “Have you sincerely put forth an effort in trying to find why your wife doesn’t like coming to these places?”  Tony began searching through his memory bank, even going back five years, and  realized that he had only engaged himself in trying to transform his wife into his way of thinking.  Not once did he make any attempt to try and figure out why she would not want to fulfill, what he considered to be, such a wonderful transformation.  Maybe he thought that it would be easy for him to convince her to his ways, and that she would just willingly summit.  But now, the stranger got him interested in finding out “Why?”

getting alongThat night, after Kimberly returned home from one of her social gatherings, Tony met her at the door and led her to the kitchen, then he asked her to sit down and said, “Can I ask you a question?”  Kim answered, “Sure, what’s going on?”  “Well,” said Tony, “I want to know if there’s a personal reason why you don’t like going to the park and sitting by the riverbanks.”  “Well,” said Kim, “I never wanted to tell you about that, because I thought you would think of me as crazy or something. But since you seem so sincere to know, I will tell you….  My Aunty took care of me most of my life, but I would always get in trouble for reasons I never understood, and which was never explained.  But these unreasonable predicaments always transpired whenever a party was about to take place at my Aunt’s home.  She would send me to the lake as a punishment and told me to sit there until she call for me.  I would hear my cousins playing and having lots of fun while I sat at the boring lake waiting for my name to be called after everyone had gone home.  Sometimes, my aunty would forget that I was even out there.  So I grew to hate these places.  Even when she took us to the park, she would make me sit on the bench while all my cousins got to play and run around…. So, there you have it! My sorry childhood life”…. 

forgiving spouseTony was speechless and full of emotions.  He could hardly believe someone would treat such a beautiful girl like Kimberly with so much cruelty. He then turned to his wife and said, “Baby, I’m sorry for not trying to understand you from the beginning.  I could have never imagined you ever going through something like that. That’s crazy! Please forgive your husband!”  “It’s ok Tony,” Kimberly said, “I was trying to change you too.  I never even asked you why you were so against my social gatherings.”  “Well,” answered Tony, “I had an Aunty problem as well.  But my Aunty had twelve kids which she brought to our house just about every day during the summer and every weekend during the school season.  It was too much for me.  My cousins played their loud music constantly, hogged the TV, fussed and argued, and ate up all the food.  As soon as I knew they were coming, I would run to the park and sit there for hours enjoying my peace of mind.  I would go to the lake and listen to the soothing sounds of the water streams.  It was my place of rest, and I never wanted to go back home while those kids were there….. So there you have it!  My sorry childhood as well!” (Tony smiles)

“My Tony,” Kimberly replied, “Why did I spend so much of my time trying to change my wonderful husband.  It seemed like such a worthy ambition for me at the time, but now that I know your background, it was so selfish of me.  I felt that if I could just conform you to my ways, you would be a better person.  I judged you by my own experience without ever trying to understand the true reason why you behaved the way you did.  I love you Tony!  I really do! And I don’t want to change anything about you!  I’m sorry for the way I treated you.”

laughing with each other“Awww Baby,” Tony responded, “you don’t feel half as bad as I do.  Matter of fact, I’m ready to go to your church social gatherings.  I want to join you in having all the fun your Aunty refused to let you have!”  Kimberly smiled a great big smile, and then said, “But not as much as I want to join you at the river, in getting away from those twelve kids! (she laughs) I know I can tolerate twelve grown ups at a church gathering, but if they brought their twelve kids along, I do believe the park would surely become one of my best sought after places!”  (they both laughed for a good while)

Many married couples learn to just simply tolerate each other, but those who have learned to joyfully accepted each other has a far fulfilling relationship.