Today I saw a sign posted on a curb. Seriously. It was not a joke and I didn’t think it was funny at all.
Sad, but true. In our culture my husband and I are becoming a rare commodity. A marriage that has lasted 30+ years and we are more in love than ever. And we are still best friends.
Our first date was 35 years ago!
We are both pretty easy-going, but because we were both beginning a new chapter in our lives, it was a challenging time for both of us. We were both new Senior in high school, having moved from two different areas in the state. Yes, I’m a romantic, and I truly believe God brought us together! :0)
Since marrying in 1982, we have been in only three churches and lived in 8 different homes–consisting of everything from an apartment to a mobile home, a duplex and rental homes. We are grateful for God’s provision every step of the way, and after travelling to several countries on mission trips, we have come to realize that we could live anywhere as long as we’re together! (Can you say, AWWWW!)?
While there are no perfect marriages when two imperfect people are involved, and there certainly is no easy “formula” for a healthy marriage–I can offer a few of our priorities:
1) LAUGH TOGETHER. a lot. Seek to find the good in your situation and choose joy.
2) PLAY TOGETHER. often. Life is often hard and struggling to make time for each other should always be a priority. Do something that you both like. If necessary, give in and do something they like…it might just be fun… and don’t be afraid to try something new!
3) FIGHT AND FORGIVE. Settle it. There’s no sense pretending you won’t fight. Just fight fair. Quit saying things like “you always”, “you never”, or “I don’t want to talk about it”. Choose to work it out even if it takes all night–then choose to forgive. Let it go and look for the good and right and godly way to move forward.
4) PRAY TOGETHER. Out loud. There. I said it. I know it’s hard for some of you, but there is nothing more calming or endearing than hearing my husband call out to the God of the universe on my behalf and or for our children and grandchildren. FAITH.MATTERS.MOST! Without a healthy relationship with God through Jesus, we would have not made it this far, this well. I know unbelieving couples make it work, but it’s rare to have a healthy marriage for this long without Him!
5) STAY TOGETHER. assume it. Not only do we plan to stay together for a lifetime, we plan to stay together as often as we possibly can. We love traveling together and as much as we can we sync our schedules and jump at the chance to “escape” together!
We have four kids and had limited resources, but we found fun things to do together that were free. Go to the park, the zoo (ours is free), the mall. Take a walk, play tennis, rent an old movie, play a game. We love exploring the country–just driving to places we haven’t been and some we have–they’ve have become our favorite spots to eat or take a hike.
We DID save for the big moments, like our 25th Wedding Anniversary. We planned and saved years in advance, and made it a priority in spite of the fact that there were always other things we could spend the money on. It didn’t happen overnight–it took years, but we are so glad we did!
The world can’t seem to fathom it, but
God created us to live happily in our marriages!
Even if you never get to do something extravagant, make every effort to have an EXTRAVAGANT MARRIAGE!
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY, LOVE!