In a few weeks my husband and I will be celebrating 23 years of wedded bliss.
Okay, maybe not bliss, but happiness and love.
Okay, I’ll just be honest here…
23 years of learning how to love each other.
We’ve had some glorious, and amazing mountain-top moments:
Our wedding day.
Our two-week honeymoon.
The day we found out we were expecting (twice).
The weekend retreat that saved our marriage.
Renewing our vows three years ago.
Celebrating how God saved Bill’s life in a bicycle accident.
Let me tell you, we’ve also experienced time of valleys and lows:
In year seven, the weekend the kids and I moved out.
When the fights were hard and long and awful.
When our days were filled with selfishness, stubbornness, and unhappiness.
The good has always outweighed the bad. We’ve come through some major obstacles and trials, but no matter how difficult things got, we’ve walked through them together. (Even if we wanted to bop each other upside the head.)
Seriously though, it’s been a journey of learning how to love each other. Learning what’s important to each other. Learning how each other “ticks.” Learning our individual weaknesses and strengths, and how to support each other in them.
Learning how to love each other has been a gift.
I was reminded this week how far we’ve come. And as I recalled some of our memorable moments, I was reminded of something else:
3 Sentences That Transformed Our Marriage
1. “Put God in the center of your marriage.”
Seven years into our marriage this sentence struck me. Sure, we said our sacred vows on the altar in front of God and our friends and family, and committed ourselves to each other and to God at our wedding, but the thought of inviting God smack-dab in the center of marriage was a light bulb moment. I began visualizing God holding us and our marriage together, and that helped me realize our marriage was a strand of three, not of two. Putting God in the center of our marriage strengthened it, healed it, and prospered it.
2. “Be nice to each other.”
Our pastor and mentor encouraged us with these words at the end of one of our visits with her. They have rang in my ears ever since. When I’m upset or don’t “feel” like being nice to my husband, these five words remind me to do so. Life–and marriage–is better when you’re being nice.
3. “We’re on the same team.”
This is the one my husband said again to me this week. Yes, we most certainly are on the same team. We are after the same goals… to love and support each other through this life, to raise God-fearing children, to honor God in our marriage, and to bless others in ways God calls us to. We have each other’s backs. We are in this together. Until death do us part.
Three simple sentences that transformed our marriage. Three tangible ways we can show love to each other. Three beautiful truths we’ve learned along the way.
Learning to love this husband of mine has been a great gift. It hasn’t always been easy, and it hasn’t always been bliss.
We won’t ever claim to have the perfect marriage, but we do have the perfect union: My husband, me, and God who joined us together.
What sentences have impacted your marriage or others you know? I’d love to read them and be encouraged by them as well.
Blessings to you!
(Linking this post with some friends of mine: Barbie & Mary at The Weekend Brew, Susan at Dance With Jesus, and Deb at Blessing Counters. You’ll be blessed to visit and experience all that’s going on at these places!)
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