Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Michele Bachmann's Core of Conviction 3: Marcus Bachmann

For my write-up today on Michele Bachmann's Core of Conviction: My Story, I'll highlight some things that Bachmann says about her husband, Marcus.  I'll start with a passage that touches on wifely submission, and then I'll mention my favorite passages about Marcus from my latest reading.

I'm starting with the passage about wifely submission because that's an issue that interests people when it comes to Michele Bachmann.  Michele Bachmann talks about when she was in Tulsa studying tax law at Oral Roberts University.  She loved Tulsa, whereas Marcus didn't, plus Marcus felt a calling to help young people.  Michele and Marcus prayed together, and Michele arrived at her decision.  On page 81, she says:
"Marcus was my husband, the leader of our home and family.  Between my law school and my marriage, it wasn't even a contest.  I now realized, deep in my heart, that however much I would hate to leave ORU, I would hate even more causing hurt to Marcus.  And then God reminded me of the famous words of Paul to the Corinthians: 'Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.'"  But Michele was still unhappy to be away from law school.

They left Tulsa, and Marcus went into youth ministry.  But, eventually, as he prayed, he concluded that Michele needed to pursue her calling to be a lawyer, and so they went back to Tulsa.  Marcus then worked with young people as Vice-President of Admissions at Oral Roberts University, and he also was director at a senior center.  (Michele says that he loved interacting with the elderly because, as a second-generation immigrant, he had grandparents who did not live in the United States.)  Michele and Marcus later made another move, and Michele went to the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

Michele did submit to her husband and regarded him as the head of the home.  But, in a sense, her decision was still hers: she chose her husband's happiness over her own because her marriage was important to her.  Was Marcus a "my way or the highway" sort of husband?  That's not the impression that I get from my reading thus far of Michele Bachmann's book, for Marcus comes across as laid-back, comfortable to be with, and caring. 

I'll now turn to my favorite passages about Marcus:

On page 61, Michele talks about when Marcus first met her Mom and step-father, Ray:

"Next it was Marcus' turn to meet my family...It was a Saturday, and Mom had said to come by anytime, so we did.  When Marcus and I arrived, we found Mom and Ray scraping their wallpaper in the hallway.  Marcus was eager to help, so that's what we did.  Such gallantry might seem more practical than romantic, but let me tell you, it was both----practical and romantic.  By pitching in so readily on a chore, Marcus made a good impression on our folks.  Men, here's a lesson for you: Flowers and candy are wonderful for a girl, but if you really want to convince her that you're Mr. Right, it helps to be a handyman!"

Well, I'm not a handyman, but I admire Marcus for being eager to help Michele's folks!

Michele also says on page 61:

"For his part, Marcus's job was...in downtown Minneapolis, a place called Soul's Harbor, where he taught employment skills to those who were down and out.  But all that time turned out to be time well spent, because he enjoyed listening to people; he has always said that everyone's story has value."

I try to cultivate an appreciation for listening to people's stories, for that is a good social skill: being interested in other people, and realizing that everyone's story has value.  That, incidentally, is one reason that I enjoy Michele Bachmann's book!  At a certain level, I am already interested in people's stories, but I should cultivate that interest.

On page 80, Michele talks about Marcus taking her to nursing homes when they were dating:

"Because we had no money, we would occasionally go to visit some of Marcus's favorite senior citizens at nursing homes in Winona, at Sarnia, and the Watkins Home.  These were very unusual dates, but I got to see what a loving, sensitive, and caring man Marcus is, and afterward, rather than being depressed, we found great joy in recalling the stories and jokes of these seniors."

I love that passage!

Marcus was a controversial figure during Michele's run for President because of his alleged belief that homosexuals could change.  But I think it's important to recognize the good that people do, not just the things that we disagree with.

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