Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Scripture memory verse 11 coincides with another important date for me - mine and my husband's wedding anniversary. I thought it was fitting to choose a scripture that is appropriate for such a day.
Twenty years ago today I walked down the aisle toward a man I loved with all my heart, toward three precious faces that would make me an instant mother, and toward our future. I had not a clue what that would be, I just knew I wanted to see that man and those babies in every day of my future. Twenty years have flown by. We are not those same people we were then. Both of us are a little more gray (one of us colors theirs!), a little more wrinkled (one of us looks more distinguished with them), a little more worn by the road, and hopefully a lot wiser. It is hard for me to remember what all I thought about that day. Probably things like, "I hope he thinks I am beautiful." "I hope we will always be as happy as we are today." "I hope we always look at each other the way we do today." Whatever the thoughts were, I am certain if I had known what all the next twenty years would bring, I am not sure that I might not have grabbed up that dress and run out the church door. See, I was too young to understand what life would bring. Aren't most of us on that day? Marriage is not all lovey dovey, I want to hold your hand while gazing in your eyes and skipping through the garden. No it is more than that. It is so much better than that.
It is enduring those little things that seem to frustrate you but really don't matter at all.
It is holding each other up through the losses of life - loss of family members - Grandmothers, grandfathers, and sadly- siblings. Loss of friendships, loss of faith in things and people you counted on. Learning faith in only one thing matters - the Lord.
It is leaning on one another through hard days at work, job changes, new businesses, busy times and slow times.
It is learning to parent with each other and not against each other with children.
It is trusting each other.
It is forgiving each other for the little things and the big things.
It is putting self last and the other first.
It is growing in faith when a son goes off to fight a war.
It is pride in watching your child get married.
It is unspeakable joy at the birth of your grandchildren.
It is learning to communicate with each other and never speaking a word.
It is going through hard times with raising children and yes even good kids can put their parents through the ringer! :)
It is learning to pray for each other and your children.
It is waiting on test results, surgery recovery, illness that brings out the ugly in us and loving each other anyway.
It is knowing that at the end of a bad day, someone who loves me just like I am, flaws and all is waiting on me at home.
It is the comfort of looking across a room and knowing we are each others.
It is looking at our sweet grand boys and smiling at each other in a way only grandparents do.
It is the pride we feel in our children's accomplishments.
It is the love we feel for each other's parents that grows and grows as time goes by.
It is the satisfaction of seeing the fruits of our hard work and seeing what the Lord has allowed us to accomplish together.
It is not taking ourselves so seriously.
It is knowing our real life has been so much better than the one I imagined that day twenty years ago.
To my sweet man,
The past twenty years have been filled with joy, laughter, contentment, pain, happiness, sorrow, and all the things that are just a result of living in this old sin filled world. I would not trade one second of it. Not even the bad. Our road is what has made us who we are today. You still surprise me regularly and make me laugh harder than anyone can. When life is hard there is no one I would rather have in my corner than you. When life is easy there is no one I would rather soak it all in with than you. You are my rock and my very best friend on this earth. Thank you for making the last twenty years an adventure and I can't wait for what is ahead.
I love you with all my heart.
PS- I still want you to think I am beautiful!