I LOVE MARRIAGE!
Let me clarify... I love being married to my wife, Cindy. In this world where marriage between a man and woman is constantly being devalued, I want to stand and say, "Marriage is awesome! "This week we are celebrating our 25th Anniversary. That's 25 (TWENTY-FIVE!) years of marriage, folks!
To keep this from being a book instead of a blog, I'm going to limit myself to three reasons I love marriage so much. Of course there's an infinitely deep well of reasons, but here's three...
1. Partnership "I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine." This ancient language pretty much sums it up. We are best friends, but so much more. Our lives have intertwined. I love that Cindy knows more about me than anyone, loves me anyway, and has chosen to live this life with me. We laugh together, cry together, struggle together. New ideas bounce between us. Dreams are dreamed and encouraged. Reality is checked. Our Facebook page is together, bank accounts are joint, and our lives are an open book to each other. We're in it for life!
2. Intimacy God has given us a beautiful gift in being able to "know" another person (yes, I mean in the Biblical sense)! And when this "knowledge" is kept between a husband and wife, it's even more glorious! There are things that should be exclusive. After 25 years of being with one woman, and one woman only, I have grown, learned, improved, and studied how to please her. And she's done the same for me. My desire burns for her. I can't contain my smile when I think about my Bride, my Lover! Again, "I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine." Of course, intimacy goes beyond the physical. There's an emotional and spiritual bond that has been made between us. I know her body language. I know what that twitch of her eyebrow means. I can read the inflections in her voice. Even the way we hold hands tells me what she's feeling.
I know this is an area of struggle for so many people. Life comes with baggage and history, some heavier than others. But there can be healing. There can be joy! Forgiveness given and integrity restored.
3. Spirituality I have learned so much about God's love, mercy, and grace through my wife's words and actions. In talking and reading together, we have discovered truth. She has shown me what forgiveness really is. I get to experience unconditional love on a daily basis. I understand why the Bible talks so much about God's relationship to His people being like a bride and groom. And I know for a fact that for me, "It is not good for the man to be alone."
To my single friends, you are loved and part of the family. Some of you have expressed that God has called you to be single, others have become single again, and others are anxiously waiting to find a spouse. Whatever the situation, Christ can bring fulfillment and joy.
All this isn't to say marriage is easy. It's hard. Really hard. And nobody gets it right all the time. There have been devastating blows that leave us wondering if we can make it another day. We can, and it's totally worth the work.
Cindy, there is so much more to say. I love you! Your beauty astounds me, attracts me, and keeps me. And I look forward to the next 20, 30, 40+ years with you. I love being married to you!
I Celebrate Marriage!