You started this morning with “Endless Love”….the very song that we claimed as “our song” 33 years ago.
I didn’t wear a floor length white gown…You didn’t wear a tux. We didn’t have all the bells and whistles of a big cathedral…but tucked inside the heart of us, was a steadfast-strong love. A love that could endure hardship– the kind that would last years. There were times it was so hard I began to try and figure out which of us broke the mirror. Neither of us. It was not a run of bad luck because a broken looking glass–it was just life stuff. And it happens to everyone at some point.
But we never went hungry. You saw to that. I cooked–what you provided (even though we had chicken legs for every meal over a week) –you always said, “thanks-I enjoyed it” (Do people still say that?) –and we shared our heart with our Father–and were thankful for the two best and dearest blessings of life, our baby girls. And God saw us “through” each and every trial.
I told Aimee this week that of all the trials that had come our way, God had always saw us through. He had never removed Himself from our situation–no matter how tough it might have been.
When you tell someone our “story” of how and where we married, I smile inside–because they really have no clue. Young adults who are now planning those amazing weddings –[with the glitter and candlelight]– I hope they realize without God as the center of their marriage–AND the center focus of each one’s own life, their marriage may not survive the holocaust against the sanctity of holy matrimony in the coming years (even as of this week).
We don’t live in Mayberry…
I hold dear and am so jealous to maintain our love and the special bond that we hold sacred. There are moments in our lives etched in my brain. Like this morning when you handed me your phone to play this song and said you were trying to get it to facebook but was having trouble. And moments when you held our babies. And our grandbabies. And the morning that the mouse had chewed my favorite skirt that my mother made me and I cried and you pulled me onto your lap and I believe you would have shot the mouse…
Sure, like any couple, there have been tough times–times when the love wasn’t burning with passion–but we choose to remember and hold onto the precious times and learn from mistakes of the past. It’s an incredulous expression you get from those that you tell, “Angie and I have never had an argument”… I want to even laugh now, because while I know it’s true–we have a certain gift from God in that. I quickly assure them, “It’s not that we’ve never had a disagreement–or that I’ve never had my feelings hurt–or that neither of us has ever been mad at the other”… we have. All of that. But it’s what we choose to do. We talk our way through it when the time is right…and the temperaments are calm–and after God has been sought.
[I want to say to anyone reading and you have just gasped at the thought of not “giving them a piece of your mind”…honey, give your mind to Christ. If you start handing out pieces to your spouse every time they make you upset–you’ll have none left in a few years–]
I am so NOT perfect. Even after 33 years– I still mess things up. I still burn cookies and pizza because I get caught up in something else. And I’m glad that after 33 years– we are just as much in love as the day we said “I DO!” in front of God, our 3 witnesses, the Justice of the Peace–in the Radio Shack. (I guess that will give folks something to talk about!) LOL.
When we renewed our vows on our 5 year anniversary and took communion with our then Pastor Wayne Fussell, I walked out feeling just as married as I had before–but there was a deeper sense of commitment–that would be needed in the coming years. God has been INCREDIBLY awesome to knit us together as one.
A side note to couples– pray for one another. If you don’t you won’t make it. That’s just the truth.
When Guy Tatum gave the “Band of Brothers” their new “One Year Bible” and encouraged them to “pray for their wives” (I know this not because Jeff told me [there’s a sacred code of honor among this prayer group of men], but because it showed up in our lives), it made an impact on our marriage–in our home–MOST OF ALL, in ME! My “security” level went through the roof–because Jeff took the time each morning to hold me and pray for me. And if by chance I left before he was able to get back home to pray (he left for his camp work around 6:00 each morning), then he would call me as I drove to work. He prayed, I drove, I cried, and I praised God for him. And I GREW spiritually. Hey–it doesn’t have to be a long prayer–just ask God to bless them and keep them safe! Start there! Ask God to protect their mind from the enemy attacks–I can promise you this–there is an enemy out there who wants to destroy all marriages that God has put together–and the enemy starts with insecurity in the heart and home.
Yes, our actions do speak louder than our words!
If you want a marriage that lasts…finding the one God has created JUST FOR YOU is first on the list of to-do’s before the I-Do’s. You won’t know by trying them all…you will know by waiting on God and praying. 2) Put God FIRST. 3) PRAY TOGETHER. It’s the cement in your love. You could have the most passionate love–but it will not be that way in 50 years…I mean face it–you will AGE. And aging shows up. 🙂 What you lay as the foundation of your marriage in the early years, will carry you through the later years. If your spouse is your best friend–you will enjoy life, love and marriage a whole lot more. To the fullest!
And the final thing that will hold your heart, home and marriage secure: Put God FIRST. I know I repeated that one–but God is the only one who knows and does what is best for each one of us….when my honey has hurt my feelings–I tell God. When I have made him aggravated…I know he tells God. Because it is the Holy Spirit who softens my heart–and it is the Holy Spirit that helps Jeff see my side. Not that my side is the right side. Jeff often maintains his view, but at least he can see where I’m coming from and he can better understand. See? It’s God who holds the manual for marriage….and it’s The Bible.
I gave all of that for free…call it Jeff and Angie Marital Advice 101. What I give my darling man, is all of me for the rest of this earthly life. God is first– and I’m thankful that He gave me you. He knew just who I would need to lead me further spiritually–and who would love me for all my days….the young vibrant and fun days–as well as these “wee bit older” and hot flashin’ days. You are my dearest-bestest-friend and I promise to love you and bless and cherish you–till death do us part.
You are my –Endless Love….