Celia dusted off the album and sitting down turned and
patted the sofa beside her. Turning to the first page she slowly
smoothed her hand over the photo that showed a young man in his
late twenties with his arms around a younger woman. He was trying
valiantly to smile for the camera, but there were tears in his
eyes and so much pain; the woman's face full of disillusionment.
Turning another page she pointed out another photo of the same
couple to Jacey; this time the smile on the young man's face was
genuine and there was a half smile on the woman's face.
"That was taken a few months after they started living
together again," she said. Pointing to the opposite page she
smiled, "Here they'd just found out that she was pregnant with
their first child and they were so happy." That same couple was
holding on to each other for all they were worth; love and
happiness shining out of their eyes.
"Mom, why are you showing me these pictures now? Shouldn't
we be meeting the girls at the bridal shop?" Jacey asked
"I made the appointment at the bridal shop for 12:30 so
we'll make it in plenty of time and I'm showing you these
pictures the way my mom showed them to me the day I decided to
marry your father. That first picture your great-grandma forced
on them knowing that dad had cheated on mom."
"You're…what!? Grandpa cheated on grandma?!" Jacey burst
out. Looking out the window she watched as grandpa Scott walked
hand in hand with grandma Jas, stopping every once in a while to
brush back her snow white hair, kiss her nose or whisper in her
ear. She watched as grandma blushed and giggled. "I can't believe
it, looking at them now. Wait, are you showing this to me,
because you don't want me to get married?" she asked.
"Honey, I'm not showing you these pictures to dissuade you
from getting married, I'm showing them to you because you have to
know that marriage takes a lot of work and that sometimes married
couples have huge struggles, but if they work hard at it they can
A gruff voice from the doorway interrupted, "Sweetheart,
what your mother is trying to tell you, is that sometimes men,
even Christian men make mistakes, but that God and godly women
like your grandmother forgive and a so-so marriage, becomes the
best marriage because of that forgiveness," Scott said.
"Baby, Christian women make mistakes too and if they want
forgiveness, then they have to learn to forgive. It's a two-way
street!" Grandma Jas said, smiling as she leaned against the
living room door. Slowly she walked towards Scott and taking his
hand in hers, she kissed it tenderly and with a big heartfelt
sigh said, "Sometimes we think that prayer or even screaming out
to God never reaches His ears, but I can tell you that it does.
He listens, forgives and gives us second chances."
"How do you know that grandma?" Jacey asked.
Settling comfortably in Scott's arms, Jas repeated their
story, ending with, "We'd gone through couple's therapy and we
knew that our marriage would be stronger than ever, because this
time we wouldn't let anything take our focus off of Jesus. We
went to the police station together; I wanted Scott to properly
meet Officer Gabriel Angeles. He'd only seen him briefly when
he'd come upon us at the bridge. This man had spent hours with
me; talking, singing, holding my hand and he'd kept me from
throwing myself into that river, but when we got to the police
station they had no idea who we were talking about. They didn't
have anyone there by that name and even the description I gave
them didn't ring any bells. The car he'd used was one they'd
stopped using over a decade ago," she stopped to take a deep
breath. "I remember calling dad and asking him the name of the
friend he'd told about me shoplifting. Dad didn't even know I'd
ever shoplifted. Somehow, someway Officer Angeles and his Boss
knew something that nobody else ever knew. I believe God sent me
an angel that day, because He knew that Scott and I had something
else to do for Him and a stronger marriage to make and we have.
We counsel couples all the time and because we've been where they
are now we know how to help them. We're able to show them that
forgiveness, true forgiveness can completely change a marriage
and for the better," she smiled up at Scott, "God gave us a
second chance and we took it."
Scott looked down at his Jasmine and the love in his eyes
was blinding, it shone so brightly. He looked over at his
granddaughter and with tears in his eyes said softly, "The
biggest problem with what I did is that I forgot my first love. I
took my eyes off of Jesus and I will never, ever do that again."
Taking his wife's hand they started toward the front door,
"We're gonna go smooch over by the lake. You girls have a good
time shopping for the dress." Leaning down he kissed his wife
softly on the lips and together in Christ they walked outside.