Tomorrow will be ten years I’ve been married to this man!
That’s the wonderful day I was transformed from single girl…to grandmother!
And began a beautiful relationship with his remarkable daughter and son who welcomed me into their family with utmost grace and love.
How our family has grown!
And John has been just as loved and accepted by my family…a gift from God we don’t take for granted.
Ten years of trials & triumphs on a journey I wouldn’t trade for anything. Along the way, I’ve picked up a few tips…here’s ten things I’ve learned in ten years of marriage:
1. It’s true! Opposites DO attract. The same qualities in each other that fascinated us in the beginning and then got on our last dangling nerves, have begun to come full circle back to sincere appreciation. Sometimes I’m stopped in my tracks in admiration of my husband’s laser focus, whether it’s in preparing for a trial, getting ready to teach a Bible study or finding just the right avocado for tomorrow’s salad! Then I catch him staring at me in wonder over something I’ve done. “I could never do that,” he whispers. God has taken our opposite strengths and weaknesses and molded us into a hand-in-glove duo for the privilege of Kingdom work.
2. My husband isn’t perfect. My disappointments are an opportunity to ask God what He’s showing me when things aren’t going my way.
3. Frankly, I’m not so hot, myself. I’m not always the easiest person to live with, either.
4. Forgiveness is key in keeping a marriage fresh. Charles Spurgeon said, “A good marriage is made up of two good forgivers.”
5. I never tire of my husband’s stories. From a paperboy in Toledo, Ohio…to a 20 year-old Silver Star Captain in Vietnam…to deposing a United States President, I love to hear about my husband’s life! His self-deprecating humor, the catch in his throat when he describes the night he met the Lord, the comraderie shared with fellow soldiers in the jungle, these things and more still captivate me.
6. Speaking of stories, we never tell on each other. We both know a couple of tales about each other that are truly “hurt-yourself’ funny, but are a sore spot, a source of embarrassment, with the other. So, we don’t share them. Ever. (This is particularly painful for me, because if you only knew how funny the story is on John….see, there was this one time…oh, darnit. The best stuff you just can’t tell!)
7. There’s a right way and a wrong way to give advice. I’m well practiced on doing it the wrong way! Slowly, I’ve realized that perhaps he doesn’t need me to offer advice on every concern he voices. Sometimes he just wants to get it off his chest and know that I’m listening and that I care.
8. Laughter affirms our friendship. Once I spray painted the ceiling fan over our bed. Taped paper to the ceiling, covered the bed, got everything prepared but then realized I needed a mask. Improvising, I found an old pair of (clean, mind you!) panties that was ready for the garbage. Taped them over my nose and mouth. Unexpectedly, my husband came home from work. As he rounded the corner of our bedroom, nothing could have prepared him for the sight of the panty bandit standing in the middle of the bed, armed with a can of spray paint. That less than dignified moment still cracks us up when one of us mentions it…and the ability to be friends and laugh together is one key for getting us through the ups and downs of life.
9. Let’s Review: Remembering the things that made my husband irresistible to me in the first place (kindness, humor, his family, his love for my family, giftedness, looks, interests) remind me of what a catch I have and renews my love and appreciation for my husband.
10. I’ll probably never fully understand my husband. But I love this adventure I’m on of discovering the fascinating man that God gave me.
If you’re married, what’s something you’ve learned about marriage in your years together? I’d love to hear from you!