Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Celebrating 12 Years of Marriage

We just celebrated 12 years of marriage on Sunday, and it was wonderful! We spent Thursday-Saturday on a special getaway in downtown Chicago, and I can't wait to tell you more about it soon!

It's been nice to also get a bit of a computer break - a total break from reality with work, life, and social networking. As much as I love it all, I was feeling overwhelmed and stressed out... actually more maxed out than I believe I've ever felt in my life. It was time to pull the plug.

Now we're back, and we are spending relaxing time around the house, working on remodeling, sorting, organizing, getting rid of stuff, and exploring our town a bit more. I'm loving this break! No stressful vacation - being in our home and our area for a week off is seriously a huge blessing!! It's surprisingly relaxing and refreshing.

This morning, as I was sorting through boxes of memorabilia in the basement that had been in storage, I ran across several old engagement announcements. I looked around the family room and saw other couples' pictures. Every single one of those couples is divorced or separated.

It's really disheartening. I grieve for a few minutes every time I stop and think about all of the couples we know who are now split. Don't get me wrong - I know marriage is incredibly hard. I know there are reasons for which you feel you have to end it or you want to, and occasionally there are times you really need to end it. But those times are very rare.

I can't tell you how many times one or both of us has wanted to walk out the door, but we didn't. We may disagree a lot of times, but we never walk out the door and leave. We have other rooms we can go to for space, allowing time for processing and praying, and giving distance so we don't say things that make the situation worse... until we can come back together and work toward a resolution.

You just don't give up or throw in the towel - you keep pressing on. Hold fast to your commitments that best that you can, in God's strength. Trust me, we could never do this without God guiding and leading our lives and our marriage! Most of the couples I know who split {save two} are as a result of the men walking out the door and deciding to throw in the towel. Giving up on their wives. Their families. Their faith. Believing the lies of Satan and the world.

I'm so incredibly thankful for a man who has resisted the temptations and lies of Satan, and is totally committed to me and the Lord. He's a man of honor, and I'm so grateful for that!!! I know there's no way to guarantee a long life together anymore when you walk down that aisle. Satan hates marriage and sure does do everything he can to break up Christian marriages. I sure am thankful we're still together, despite it all!

And I regularly pray for those couples who walk down the aisle, that the Lord will help them stay committed and true to each other & Him - and also for those who are no longer together, that God will change their hearts, that there will be reconciliation where possible and forgiveness, and that God will be honored in each life and family. He can redeem any situation and still turn things around no matter how far gone they may seem! What an awesome God he is!!

So, as I went through through those boxes this morning, I ran across a letter I'd written to Tim in a journal entry for him to read on our wedding night. I wanted to share it with you here:


It's nearly two a.m. and I can't sleep. There are so many things on my mind. We just watched [our friends] Ryan & Amy get engaged and now I am dreaming of the day it will be our turn [and it was almost exactly one year later]. But waiting on God's plan is the best thing.

As I lay here, thinking back to life before you, I can't believe I ever got to this point. I know we have our share of problems, but you have no idea just how much I love you. You are the man of my dreams - even better, or far more wonderful than I ever imagined. You know the things I have to hear, even if I don't want to hear them. A little over 5 months into our relationship, I know I've met the man I am going to spend the rest of my life with. You are the best friend I've ever had.

Thank you for being yourself, and accepting me as I am. I love you for your godliness, sincerity, humility, integrity, honesty, loyalty, commitment, passion, understanding, acceptance, love, compassion, giving heart, friendship, and your drive to be the best you can be.

I simply love you.

12 years into our marriage and nearly 14 years after that letter was written, it's still all true today. It's just a little different now - deeper, more mature, more committed, further growth, and richer from the challenges and celebrations we've shared.

So very, very blessed to call you my husband Tim - I'm a lucky, lucky girl!

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