A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good . . . for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh. Luke 6:45 KJV
Out of the sham of a marriage the one thing that was real was the man who was supposed to be my husband introduced me to my best friend ("Harm"). Harm is married to Kurt. But for him, I would not have met her, for he moved her here from another state and married her. But for that scoundrel- masquerading-as-a-man visiting the church where Kurt served as pastor for a quarter century, I would not have Harm and Kurt in my life. So, the scoundrel had some utility, some redeeming value after all. He was a conduit for a relationship that transcended its origins.
By now, of the two men of whom I have written, one should have guessed the man who is the subject here is is Kurt -- not the other. We lost him recently, and for the past several days I have eulogized him in my head. The thing about some people is that you can speak of them all day and not run out of good things to say. People like Kurt. And so here is my eulogy.
Over the last 12 years I have had many conversations with Kurt, and from those, and his actions, I learned who and what were important to him, the stuff of which his heart was full. And I concluded that Kurt was a real man -- intentional, upright, solid, and so much a Psalm 37:23 kind of man. He was a professor, a protector, a peacemaker, and a provider.
A telephone call could take on Biblical proportions -- literally and figuratively. I have one more thing I want to say and I'll let you go. Thirty minutes later, and several one more things later, perhaps our conversation would end! The length of our talks mattered not, as many times they were instructional, encouraging, and always substantive. But for my anal way of logging time, I would have no idea. I learned more about navigating the treacherous path of being an ordained minister who happens to be a Black woman, from Kurt more than from anyone else. (Yes, there are places where people like me are unwelcome.) He gave me wise counsel.
He was a protector of his family. His devotion to Harm was a natural way of life -- just something that flowed -- never a show -- it just was. There was no single thing to which one can point -- it was just his way when he spoke of her, spoke up for her, supported her activities and planned for her. I learned recently that he also protected me, declining invitations and foregoing events that he believed would make it appear that he devalued our relationship had they attended. I was overwhelmed by his sense of what is right and humbled by his consideration for me.
The one time there was a rift in our relationship, it was Kurt who helped Harm and me get back on track. He reminded us both of what we meant to each other. He bridged that gap, and we made peace. That was in 2009, so I guess in did a pretty good job!
And he was a provider. Many of our talks were about what he wanted to accomplish before he left this earth, to make sure his family was taken care of. In the next to his last day he worked out the final details.
For these 12 years, I tended to refer to Kurt as my best friend's husband. And when I replayed the scenes of my time with Harm and Kurt, especially those middle-of-the-night phone calls (literally), I realized that he was my friend, too. And now my saying we lost him recently hopefully makes a little more sense.
From the abundance of Kurt's heart, this is what I learned: He was a good man whose steps were ordered by the Lord. He was my professor. He was a protector and provider to his family. The world could use some of his ilk.