Marriage

I attended a wedding today. Couples who are getting married are cute in their crazy kind of love they have for one another. It doesn’t really matter their age by the way. They just have this exuberance and hope that is just plain fun to be around!  Plus, I love to eat cake!

The promises they make are really pretty important but tough to fulfill! I mean to love, honor and cherish till death? That is a tall order and requires some incredible intentionality if we are going to make the vows a reality. Whew… you got to stay on top of it everyday.  I have to admit most couples repeating those promises are a bit naive about what it really will require.

Mary and I have been married now for 29 years and I can tell you it ain’t easy.  I am still learning how to really love her unselfishly. I have a whole bunch of “Jimism” to overcome… that is, I really like Jim to be happy. I like things a certain way and want them to happen immediately. Marriage has to do with sacrifice and consideration of the other person.

A few weeks ago, we celebrated a man and woman in our church who have been married 70 years! I was blown away.  That is well over double the length of time Mary and I have been married. I can barely imagine living 70 years, let alone be connected to one woman for that long. Don’t get me wrong!  I hope Mary and I have 70 years in us. By then, maybe I will have women figured out. A guy can dream, can’t he?

This same couple are so sweet to watch. The woman in the relationship has Alzheimer’s and struggles to know what is really going on around her. My mom had this disease so I know how challenging it can be for the care giver. And yet, her husband, her primary caregiver is so patient and loving with her. He treats her as a precious gift!

I know I have a ways to go in my love for Mary. I will keep trying because she is worth it. Someday, I will figure out this whole marriage thing out and will be an “expert.” But, I have a feeling, I will never get it completely perfect. She will keep changing. I will keep changing. And, we will have to adjust to changes around us.

This marriage thing is work! Thankfully, I still get those warm and fuzzy feelings in the pit of my stomach when I look over at her like I did when I first said “I do.” It really helps to be married to the most incredible woman on the planet!

Like I said, we have a long way to go! No problem! The trip has been pretty good so far!

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