All this week I’ve been sharing my posts from the recent Facebook Love Your Spouse Challenge. My prayer is I encourage you with a realistic look at marriage. That you can choose oneness and isolation and beat the odds. I believe in you!
LOVE YOUR SPOUSE CHALLENGE, Day 5
This picture is from a cruise we took to Mexico to celebrate our 15th anniversary. From infertility to nearly losing a child to death of a parent and lots of transition, we had overcome so much that should have divided us. Anything we learned came from the FamilyLife Marriage Conference, something we attended as an engaged couple. The biggest principle we still work to apply is to choose oneness. Any relationship has two choices—isolation or oneness. Marriage has to operate in oneness. This was a celebration trip for sure.
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You’ve probably seen the challenge on Facebook. Although I can’t respond to each invitation I receive, this one grabbed my attention. I didn’t see it as a way to show the “glamourous” aspect of marriage through pictures.
I saw it as a way to be authentic and encourage.
Enough so that I am going to share my posts here.
Because somewhere, out there, someone needs that encouragement.
Here you go.
Susan tagged me for the Love Your Spouse challenge. For 7 days I’ll post a picture of Tom and I to promote marriage and to challenge couples to choose onheeness over isolation every day!
Although one set is a newlywed, I think they have enough great pix together to participate if they want. I choose Amanda and Matt /Stephanie because they were a big part of why I said yes when their dad asked me to marry him. I knew I wasn’t just marrying Tom, I was entering into a family. So glad I did!
This picture is the first one of us that I know of. I’m not sure we’re even engaged, but if so, it was pretty new. 1995.
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It’s Word-Full Wednesday! It’s that “Battery re-charge” for your week where God’s word is glorified. Go ahead, join us. Take an image and a verse from the Bible, post on your blog, and link your post URL to the Internet Cafe.
Not only is it WFW…it’s our 15th anniversary.
August 31, 1996
What makes this anniversary and this picture so special is that the lovely lady to my right in this picture is going to be a bride herself. There are so many things I want her to know. As beautiful as the wedding might be, it is the marriage that matters. Every hour, every day. It is work. It is the best and can feel like the worst. It is a choice between oneness and isolation every single day. It isn’t about changing them, it’s about asking God to change you.
If you are married, you know I could go on and on.
But I have every day as a blogger to share those things. Let’s bring the best marriage instruction book of them all to this post.
1 Corinthians 13:13, The Message
13But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.
Our 15 years featured these seasons: infertility, high-risk pregnancy, real estate transactions, birth, depression, surgeries, parent sickness, parent death, sibling life changes, miscarriage, job changes, major move, near death of child, church changes, financial struggles, financial blessings, friendship transitions, ministry additions/subtractions, travel for work, fun, and family.
On a computer screen they don’t seem too hard. In reality, they threatened, at times, to crush our spirits and destroy our marriage.
What gets us through?
Trust steadily in God
At this moment our marriage is still on a solid rock. We’re closer than ever. But… we are shells of who we were 15 years ago. We have been not around the fire, we have been through it (and will again). We are better for all these things. But the Bible knows what it is talking about.
Cling to His word today.
And love extravagantly.