Thankful Thursday–The Valentine’s Day Edition

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(This is a re-make of a post from 2 years ago. But, since it’s Valentine’s Day, I thought it appropriate to share our story again!)

 

Almost 19 years ago, I had just returned to college after a needed break. I had been in an emotionally and mentally abusive relationship and was on the way to being healthy again. I was ready to finish the degree that I had started a couple of years previously.

 

I moved into an off-campus apartment with a new friend, and she and my sister introduced me to a guy with whom they had become friends. We got together with a group of friends and I met this Ron person that I had heard so much about. By the end of that first evening, I decided I didn’t care much for him. It wasn’t anything major, I just thought he talked a lot and was a little too blunt.

 

As God would have it though, because of the college we attended and the group of friends we were both involved with, I ended up spending quite a bit of time with him.

 

He kinda grew on me.

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The first time we did anything with just the two of us, we went shoe shopping for running shoes for him. How romantic, huh? We did end up going to dinner together afterwards though, and sat and talked for a long time. In his mind, I was a nice friend to pal around with. He had been engaged previously, had been hurt badly, and wanted nothing to do with dating.

 

Over the next several months, we spent more and more time together, and I knew (waaay before he did) that he was the guy for me. So, I bided my time, and eventually he came around. :)

 

We “officially” dated for almost a year. Our first real date was up to the foothills above Denver to see the city lights. When he proposed, he took me back up to that same spot. His proposal was…um, a little unusual.

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He, being a very practical, no-nonsense person, listed for me all the reasons why marriage was hard work, why he was unsure about it, and his concerns about the kind of husband he would be. After all this, he said, “So, in spite of all that, what would you say if I asked you to marry me right now?” I thought he was speaking hypothetically! I had to ask him if he meant that for real, or only as a hypothetical question!

 

Of course, when he told me it was for real, I didn’t hesitate to say yes.

 

Our engagement was only 4 months long. It was not the easiest 4 months of my life. He kept second-guessing himself; he wondered if he really wanted to be married. He actually called it off at one point. I was devastated!

 

I remember, at one point, sitting curled up in a corner of my room crying, knowing I had to be willing to let him go. I somehow was able to trust that if our marriage was a good thing, then God would bring it about. Within a week, things changed and the wedding was back on.

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He was not being fickle by any means. He just had serious questions–not about me, but about being married in general. Before he met me, he was pretty much set on throwing his entire life into ministry and staying single.

 

But, despite all the questions and unknowns, we were married on May 13, 1995.

 

Our first couple of years were rough. I wondered a few times if we had made a mistake. No mistake though. I can honestly say that after those first years, our marriage has gotten better every year.

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He is not exactly what you would call a romantic guy. But I have learned that there are things that are way more important than that:

  • I am so very grateful for his faithfulness that I never have to question
  • He is a constant student of God’s word, and honestly strives his hardest to live by it
  • He is a man of incredible honesty and integrity
  • Through the years he has developed a compassionate, deeply caring pastor’s heart. People know that he truly cares about them and is interested in their best
  • He still talks a lot, but I’ve come to appreciate his desire to have everything out in the open, and since I am not very verbal, he has challenged me on the importance of openness
  • He is willing to approach confrontation as lovingly as possible, even when I get emotional and mean
  • He loves the way I look with no makeup on, and doesn’t care that I wear flannel pajamas
  • He challenges my status quo
  • He is willing to fight for our marriage
  • He enjoys spending time with me
  • He keeps me supplied with chocolate
  • He loves our daughters

 

What more could I ask for? Absolutely nothing. No, he is not perfect by any means. But he’s the Lord’s man, and he’s mine. And I am eternally thankful for him.

Who, and what, are you thankful for today? If you’ve written about that, please link up, link back here, and spread some encouragement! Happy Valentine’s Day!


Top Ten Lessons From Their Marriage

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Top Ten Tuesday at Many Little Blessings

 

Yesterday was my parents’ 45th wedding anniversary.

I am immensely grateful for their example, their love for one another, and the lessons I’ve learned from them. So, here are 10 things I have gleaned from having the privilege of observing their marriage (in no particular order):

 

  1. Pray together; play together
  2. Make time for one another
  3. Rely on each other’s strengths
  4. Accept one another’s weaknesses–even though it may not always be easy
  5. Commitment, not feelings, is what carries you through
  6. Traumatic events do not have to destroy a marriage
  7. There may be times when you cannot understand what the other is going through–hang on tight anyway
  8. Different “seasons” bring new challenges, but facing them together causes new depth and closeness
  9. Share wisdom gained from experience–especially the struggles–with other couples
  10. Enjoy being together–whether it’s drinking coffee together in the mornings, reading in the car, shopping at Costco, or praying for your children–appreciate the time you have

 

There are many more–but this is Top TEN Tuesday–so I’ll stop there.

Mom and Dad, I cannot thank you enough for all that you’ve taught me and shown me through your marriage. I love you both so very much.


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Just For Fun

For her 14th birthday, one of the gifts my daughter got was the Rock Show Comedy Tour DVD with Tim Hawkins, Bob Smiley, and John Branyan. We’ve watched it a couple of times already and laughed the whole way through. Here’s a short excerpt (courtesy of YouTube).

 

 

 

 

This post has been submitted for inclusion in The Christian Home Magazine. As the featured columnist for the Gentle Humor column, I will be sharing something weekly that will, hopefully, bring a smile to your day!