Saturday, January 8, 2011

Forever and a day...

January, 8, 2011

Twenty-eight years ago today, that sweet man that I'm honored to call my husband, you know him as Tim, picked me, picked ME to be his helper, his confidant, his love, his partner, his encourager, his friend, his wife -  for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, for better for know how it goes. How fortunate I was!

Those of us who are married said those vows to each other. We voiced those words out loud so that our family and friends could hear them, but I'm not sure we really thought about the ramifications of what we were saying...the nitty gritty of it.  For richer or poorer...really? What about losing our house and car because we've lost our jobs. Are we willing to do what it takes to pull together?  What about when a spouse acquires an illness that requires round the clock care. Those kind of circumstances takes not only a financial toll on the marriage but a mental toll also. What about when appearances change somewhat as we age, when the stresses of life take it's toll on the physical body.  Are we willing to stay in those circumstances?   "Life"  can be hard on marriages. It can pull couples apart if you allow it.

When my kids were small and the message I needed them to hear was very important, I would sometimes hold their little face between the palms of my two hands and physically turn their face toward mine so they would be forced to both look and listen to me when I was talking to them.  So to my children physically and to many others whose voices have echoed off my walls in their "growing up years",  listen to me (as I hold your faces in my hands).  You must decide early on that when you marry you will pull together not only in the good times but probably more importantly, in the difficult times.   That's a conscience choice that you must make!  Life happens.  Bad things happen and the world is not on your side when it comes to having a thriving, loving marriage. It will do it's best to pull you apart but you can choose to hold on tight to each other as you weather the storms so that nothing...nothing will come between you. If you don't make that determination, the wind will blow your relationship as far apart as it can be blown.

I've seen way too many marriages that have not survived, marriages of those that I always thought would have stood the test of time. It makes me so grateful for the patient love of the one who chose me and thankful for his refusing to sleep on the couch early on in our marriage.

Contrary to what we might think, couples don't grow apart overnight; it happens gradually. We get busy with life and forget the important things.  We stop nurturing the one and the relationship that should be the most important person and thing on earth to us. We run at a rapid speed in so many different directions and allow only minimal time for each other if any.  Then, we wake up one morning 20 years down the road and wonder why we have nothing in common.  It's not rocket science. Take the time to let that one know how much you cherish them. Do it often. Do it now. There should not be any room left for an ounce of doubt.

I'm thankful to God that both Tim and I were in the same place at the same time many years ago and that he not only pursued my heart but captured it.