Today is our 24th wedding anniversary. In some ways it seems more like 50, in other ways it seems like 3 or 4 years since we said I do.
As any married person knows, it's not always easy no matter how much you love one another. There are seasons to marriage, sometimes it's spring and sometimes it seems like a rainy, cold winter.
I know without grace from God, marriage is not possible. I remember how shocked I was with some very small things the 1st days of our marriage:
my husband squeezed the toothpaste tube in the middle, everyone knows you begin at the end of the tube!
he is cheerful in the morning...I mean - he is CHEERFUL and there are days I wanted to strangle the life out of him because he smiled at 5:00am...I mean how dare he! If we had curtains instead of blinds in our 1st house, I think he would have thrown them open at sunrise and said something really cheery.
There are the not so little things, problems with relatives and children, illness, money issues, and pride! (Did you ever think I shaved me legs for this?)
God's grace allows us to forgive one another. His love enables us to keep loving each other and for our love for one another to grow. His ways allow us to die to self.
Through sickness and health, through better and worse, I would do it all over again. I cannot imagine life without my man. I thank God for him. (Though I may have prayed for him not to be so happy in the morning.)
The Bible tells us:
Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh." This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. (Though we keep records upon occasion.)Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.