Well, we made it. My sweet wife and I have now been married for a year. It seems hard to believe, and yet we have no less than a year's worth of memories and growth to account for. It has been one amazing year.
Someone just asked us, "How would you describe your first year?" Good question, I thought.
During our engagement, many well-wishers predicted we'd be disclaiming at this point. "We haven't gotten the rose without the thorns," or "It's had its ups and downs, but has been great, overall." But, if I were to say those things, I would be overlooking the facts. The ones that say that it's been nothing but a rose. And the ones that say it been up, up, up all the way. Sweet, sweet love of husband and wife. Sure, we've learned a lot about life, love, and family, but neither of us have ever thought, "This is kinda tough. I'm not sure I was prepared." Never once have we looked back to wipe our brow and see if we've made any progress. It has been like a dream that never ends, and we've had an easy life to boot.
I've heard the cynical analogy that marriage is like bath water: "once you get used to it, it's not so hot." Phooey. Under examination, that motif seems less like the voice of experience, and more like the voice of a certain arch-enemy. I simply don't believe it. The New Testament makes a strong case that marriage is designed to mirror God's love for his bride, the church. As God unreasonably loves his bride, so I love my own, and ask nothing in return but her love. Real marriage is not give and take. It's more like give and trust. Jesus' road to Calvary was the hardest ever walked, but it didn't snuff out his love. It didn't make him say, "Man, this "redeemer" bit is more than I signed up for," or "Playing the Savior role seemed great, but it's like bath-water...." Get the picture? Hebrews 5:8-9 says that even Jesus was perfected through suffering so that He was able to author our salvation. My love for Crystal has been easy-coming so far, but I'm convinced that the hardships of life, when they come, ought to strengthen a marriage, not undermine it.
|Flowers I bought for Crystal.|
Go ahead. Roll your eyes. "Still on his honeymoon," you say. Well, you're absolutely right. We are still on our honeymoon, and we have no plans to come back. This is just Part I, and we're having the time of our lives. God is sustaining and multiplying our love, daily. His promises are true, and without his grace it would be impossible.
God bless you. And thanks, Julie, for the question.
*Ephesians 2, ESV, excerpt