(Judges 14:2 Retold)
The journey from Timnath seemed shorter that usual. The more Samson thought about his meeting with the Timnite, the more he became convinced he was, for the first time, in love.
And the more he became convinced of his love for the Philistine, the more he pushed the horse to run faster.
Caged in the bounds of love, he just couldn’t wait to get home and tell his parents to get the Timnite for him to marry.
Despite the sweet fluttering of his heart and the tingling feeling on his skin- all evident of a man in love, Samson still felt a soft rebuke for the plans he had made.
‘Am I supposed to do this? Marry a Philistine?’
It was a soft but sure voice, a whisper in his mind. But it faded as quickly as it came.
‘Things have changed’, he told himself as he recalled countless other Israelites who took their wives outside the confederate of the people of God.
His doubts vanished as quickly as they came.
As he entered his street and slowed his pace, he wondered if his parents wouldn’t object to his decision.
‘They sure will’. This assertion drew a wry smile from Samson’s face.
‘But they won’t do a thing about it.’
Ever since he was a teenage, his parents had always caved in to his every whims and desires.
He knew it had to do with him being a Nazarene and all; they were too afraid to overturn any of his decisions.
‘Hello…!’ Samson called as he opened the gates to the family house.
He looked around and waited for response but none came.
He moved to his parents quarters and checked if any of them was home.
‘Mom! Dad!’ Samson called again.
When he couldn’t find them anywhere, he knew they would be in the garden behind the house.
Approaching the garden, Samson revised his speech and prepared himself for any consequent question.
He was right. Both his dad and mom were seated under the giant palm tree just at the left corner of the garden.
On seeing him, his mom stood up and called out to him.
‘Samson, you are welcome’.
They exchanged pleasantries while his dad prepared a space beside him for him to sit.
‘I have an important matter to discuss’. Samson announced as soon as he took his seat.
He needed to quickly speak his mind. He was no longer going to delay and risk doubting the trueness of his love for the Timnite.
With the thought of the Timnite came the happy memory of the little time they shared together.
Samson smiled as he recalled the giggle that escaped from her mouth when he threw her into the air.
Smiling, he returned his attention to his dad and made his intention known.
‘Dad, Mom, I am finally getting married’.
As soon as the words dropped, his mother gave a gasp in delight. She raised her hand to the heavens and thanked God.
For the larger part of the past ten years, she had been praying to God to provide Samson with a wife that will help him fulfill his purpose.
But as years rolled over, the prayers had become reduced and replaced with questions and pleas directed to Samson.
But he would have none of it.
He always maintained he would marry when he was ready.
‘Thank God he is finally ready’. His mother thought.
Though visibly elated at the news, his dad wanted to hear more.
‘So, which of the families, which of our twelve tribes is the damsel from?’
‘She is not from here’. Samson answered.
‘What do you mean she is not from here’? Her mom asked, the smile that hanged on her face quickly fading.
‘She is a Philistine from the town of Timnath…’
‘Wait! What are you…’ His father couldn’t believe what he was hearing.
‘She is the one my heart wants, she pleases me well, I love her.’
‘Wait, let us talk about this. Can’t you find a woman from any of the twelve tribes we have here? How would you marry a Philistine?’
The incessant questions were already infuriating Samson.
He didn’t expect them to put up much contest but his dad was proving stubborn.
‘She is my wife, and I am marrying her. Get her for me, she pleases me well. That is final!’ Samson said firmly as he stood up and made to leave.
‘But I thought this was supposed to be a discussion’ his dad stopped him.
Feeling helpess and disappointed, his mom just sat still and wondered how a judge of Isreal would take a wife from the heathen.
‘What would people say?’ She asked loudly.
‘I don’t care what people say. She is whom my heart has chosen.’ Samson said with a final tone as she went out of the garden.
Turning to each other, his parents were visibly shocked at what just happened.
His dad returned to his seat and heaved in defeat.
He knew he would have to follow him to Timnath for the marriage arrangements.
‘…afterall he is still a judge of Israel and a Nazarene.’ He reasoned.
(To be continued…)