I was looking through our wedding album last week and was overcome with emotion. I know what you’re thinking, “Babe, it’s only been two years… you need to calm down”. But if you think about it, a lot has happened in our first two years of marriage.
A lot more than I had planned for, that’s for sure.
Of course, I figured that getting married in Atlanta, going on a honeymoon in Mexico, and moving me into your home in Missouri (all in less than 10 days), would be hectic. But I guess I expected the following 24 months to be a little less eventful.
I thought we would settle into our first home together, volunteer at our church, have a few big fights, I would start working in a school, we’d take a trip or two, learn more about each other, occasionally have friends over for dinner, argue about how to correctly load the dishwasher, you know… normal newlywed stuff.
And, yeah, we did do all of those things. But God had more for us.
When I came across this particular photo, my heart paused. I’ve looked through these photos countless times, but this one hadn’t stood out to me until now. My face says it all — JOY. Such joy to finally be your wife.
But can I be honest with you, William?
I’m pretty sure if someone had told me on our wedding day that our first 2 years of marriage would include a deployment, followed by an overseas move — your new bride wouldn’t have been smiling so much.
Fear and anxiety would have held her jaw muscles tight. Her mind would have asked endless questions and her heart would have welcomed in doubt.
(If you didn’t know by now, you married someone with a whole lot of flaws.)
But that’s the beautiful thing about saying “I DO”, instead of “I do, if…” or “I do, when…”.
“I Do.” is definite. It’s simple yet complex. It doesn’t ask questions. It stands alone.
If you’re married, there’s a 100% chance you have walked through something hard and unexpected. Maybe it’s infertility, an accident, loss, addiction, cancer, pornography, death, a move, separation, unemployment, __________.
For me, it was my husband’s job asking him to live somewhere other than our home for 6 months and then asking us to both move to a new country for 3 years. (Which by the way, feels trivial when I read the aforementioned list.)
But the point is…
You have no way of knowing what’s on the other side of the words I Do.
You can’t plan for it. You can’t negotiate. You can’t hide from it. (Trust me, I’ve tried all 3.)
My bet is that many of us wouldn’t have said “I Do” so confidently, if we knew exactly what would follow or how the person we said it to would change.
So today, I’m thanking the Lord for His design of I Do. For the mystery, the uncertainity, the room for growth, the room for GRACE. I’m thanking Him for not putting me in control of marriage. Oh, what a mess I would make.
I’m thanking Him for promising to walk beside us, regardless of what He brings to our door. For being the perfect example of covenant marriage. And for loving us more than we could ever love each other.
(For HE first chose US to be HIS bride… KNOWING what would follow. We are so undeserving of such a loving God.)
These 24 months with you have been wild, stressful, and oh so sweet. I’m so glad we don’t know what our years as husband and wife hold. Because I’d hate to think I might have missed out the greatest blessing of being your wife.
The Lord has continued to wreck our plans… and we are so much better for it.
Thank you for bringing adventure to my eyes, courage to my steps, faith to my soul, love to my heart. Thank you for being exactly what I didn’t even know I needed in a husband.
I’m looking forward to many more anniversaries by your side…
I still Do,