We knew that little boy that broke his leg when he was a toddler would grow up. Little did we know that a smooth-faced teenager would one day sport such a well-groomed beard!
That’s what happens after sixteen years. The last time I saw Jordan was 2003. Kimberly graduated high school that year. Patty and I had been married twenty years, turned 40 and had my first surgery. Then Jordan jumped on a plane. He was looking to clear his head. The angsty late teenager felt the sting of lost love. “Maybe I’ll go see Uncle Todd.”
The term of endearment is the reciprocation for the way our two families had meshed beyond simply serving a local church together in the late 1980s. Our girls knew Jordan’s Dad not as Pastor Rick but as Uncle Rick and his wife, Aunt Joan. They still refer to the Davis’ this way. It was no surprise when Jordan referred to me as Uncle Todd when recalling the last time we were together.
Jordan reached out to me on Facebook Messenger. He would be bringing his niece, Faith, up to OKC to the Switchfoot concert. I did not know they were still a thing. Tells you that I am now a grandparent and not so hip as I may have once been. We planned dinner last Wednesday. He knew it would be a hard day to make it happen. A PK, Preacher’s Kid, himself, he knows Wednesdays can be busy. We have a good team at Snow Hill so I knew I could slip away. Little did I know when we laid out plans it was better for me to be inside eating chips and salsa than standing in the Northwind. Providence? (Thanks folks for standing in for me!)
Today Jordan is nearing his mid-30’s. Husband and Dad to three, he has an earned doctorate in psychology and has a solid practice in a collegiate context. While I know his parents are proud of him, and his three siblings, Rick had children just to have grandchildren. But then again, don’t we all? I bring up Jordan’s age and the time lapse between the last time we were together to point up something he said while I was eating my fish taco.
“I read everything you write. I think your way of thinking aligns with my own.”
Jordan wasn’t specific. His words were an encouragement. That wasn’t all. When I told him I had been stung by a conversation a couple of years ago, told I had left the faith of my fathers, I decided to stop feeding the trolls so much. He looked shocked. Not half as shocked as I was when receiving the judgment. He suggested I get back to writing.
So, here I am.