Today, Jim and I have been married 20 years.
If you ask Jim, he will probably tell you we have been married 18 happy years…lol. Well, I guess that’s not too bad. We’ve had some rough times. We’ve had our share of ups and downs. But I can honestly say, we have never been happier than we are now.
So what is so different now? Well, one thing that is different from when we first got married is that we make about a third less income. Other than our home, we have no debt. We don’t make impulse buys and we discuss our money, especially on any big purchases.
Another thing is that we listen to each other. Not just hear the words, but listen to how the words are spoken. And, sometimes, we listen to the silence and that speaks volumes.
We have learned to appreciate the other’s strengths and accept each other’s weaknesses. We are not perfect people…we make mistakes…but we know that even when we fail, we do so in love.
We have learned to encourage one another in ways that are as individual as we are. I know when Jim needs to go “sit in the woods and think”. He knows when I need to take a long bath with a good book.
Twenty years…maybe to some of you that seems like a long time; to others, we’re still on our honeymoon. I read in the bulletin on Easter Sunday that a couple was celebrating their 62nd anniversary…whew! That is amazing!
But you know, in twenty years, I do have some regrets. I regret going to bed angry with Jim. I regret speaking to him with unkind words. I regret harboring thoughts that rooted in me and caused me to be unforgiving. I regret any moment that my words and actions didn’t express how much I love and respect Jim, especially those done in front of our sons.
So for the next 20 years, I pray that I can be an encouragement to him. That I can build him up, help him be all that God wants him to be. That I will pray faithfully for him; that I will listen and learn what he can teach me.
Lord, I thank you for the wonderful man that is my husband…my best friend. I give you praise for your strength and gentle guidance. I pray today for all marriages, especially those who are struggling. And I pray for my boys, that they might be strong Christian husbands and fathers, like their father is.
“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 wrong doing. It does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, trusts, hopes, perseveres.” –1 Corinthians 13
Jim, Happy 20th Anniversary…I love you.