Today my favorite stylist came over and cut my hair. There’s nothing like having a great stylist in the family! My niece, Natalie, came over and chopped off several inches. I feel like a new woman. Why is it that a good haircut can be such a boost?
Nat is getting married in just a few more weeks, to a very nice young man. We love Adrian and he is already part of the family. They are so excited about the wedding and starting their new life together.
Today we spent some time chatting about marriage and relationships and what it takes to keep a marriage healthy. It made me reflect back on my own wedding, over 28 years ago (yikes, I can’t be that old!). I was 19 and Steve was 22. We were SO young and naive. It is a miracle of God’s grace that we didn’t kill each other in the first years. We were both stubborn and hard-headed. We loved each other passionately but also argued incessantly.
Life has knocked us around the last 28 years. We have endured a near-fatal heart attack, epilepsy, illness, pain, heartache, financial stress, the deaths of loved ones and countless other bumps in the road. We have celebrated the births of our three beautiful children, their triumphs and accomplishments and we look forward to expanding our family next year when our Ashley takes that trip down the aisle to become Daniel’s bride.
I know that it hasn’t been the times of happiness and triumph that have strengthened our marriage, but the times of deepest trials and pain. These are the times that have tested us and forced us to either draw closer to one another and to God, or pull away. We have not always risen to the challenge and have endured one another in our failings. But here we are, 28 years later, in love and more importantly, closer than ever to the One who holds it all together.
I do not claim to be a marriage expert. I am still learning and often fail. But, I encouraged Natalie, as I have my own children. Stay close to Jesus and trust Him with your future. Without Him as the center, the whole will fall apart.
“Summing up: Be agreeable, be sympathetic, be loving, be compassionate, be humble. That goes for all of you, no exceptions. No retaliation. No sharp-tongued sarcasm. Instead, bless—that’s your job, to bless. You’ll be a blessing and also get a blessing.“
I Peter 3:8-9
P.S. The beautiful picture of Natalie and Adrian is by Hugh Forte. Check out his website!