Today, Amy and I celebrate our 10th anniversary. I can’t believe this woman has been able to put up with me for that long! In all seriousness, we can’t help but give God the glory for providing for and preserving our marriage. Some of the highlights of our past ten years include our involvement in a growing Desert Gateway Baptist Church and of course, the adoption birth of our precious daughter, Anabelle Grace.
I know that ten years does not seem like a long time in comparison to other marriages. In this day and age of infidelity and immorality, we praise God for how He has sheltered our home. Truly, as the songwriter said God has been “a Shelter in the time of the storm.” And as I took moments during our busy day to meditate upon what God has wrought in our lives, I have compiled the “Top Ten Reasons I’ve Been Married For Ten Years.”
10. My wife is an exceptional cook and baker! As a result, I have “enlarged my temple” in the past ten years. She never ceases to amaze me when it comes to providing for my physical nourishment. Red Velvet cakes, pasta, southern meals (all of which start with butter, of course), and so much more. I pity husbands who have to fend for themselves. What a blessing!
9. Amy has a great sense of humor and an infectious laugh. Anyone who has had the joy of laughing with my wife knows that you can’t help but laugh along. She truly takes pleasure in the comedic events of life.
8. She is organized- borderline OCD. Just kidding! There are some that are simply organized for organization’s sake. She’s organized for living and serving’s sake. The purpose of her organized nature is not to impress others with her color-coding skills or sorting management but rather to provide herself and her family an efficient way to live life and serve God.
7. My wife is a servant. There is not a person she’s met that she has not been willing to serve. There are times people use and abuse her and yet, with a smile, she continues to serve others. The reason for this is because her service to others is always unto the Lord.
6. I am married to an industrious woman. Give Amy something to do and she will do it with all her might. There is no such thing as a “half-hearted effort” in her vocabulary.
5. I love her smile. Have you ever seen Amy without a smile on her face? Beside the pretty, pearly whites she displays- it is obvious that the smile is based on a joy from within. She is not moody and for that I praise the Lord.
4. Amy is a faithful friend. Though the busyness of ministry has hindered us from keeping in touch with those that we love, they are never far from her thoughts and prayers. Just this week, I have seen her pray for a friend from high school who just lost his father in an accident. That’s a friend from 15 years ago! Not too many people can have many best friends but Amy can.
3. God has blessed my wife with a very forgiving spirit. Even when people do or say things that are hurtful to her or behind her back, somehow and in some way, she forgives. Don’t get me wrong- she’s human and a woman. She gets upset and frustrated just like any of us. But after praying for the person and situation, I have seen her time and time again face her persecutors and (with a smile on her face) love them through the Lord. I must confess, I have learned much from her in this area and I have been on the receiving end of this forgiveness many times.
2. My wife is a faithful Christian and loves God more than me, my family, and our church. Isn’t that how it’s supposed to be? I often tell the story to our teenagers and single adults that the questioning my wife put me through before we started our courtship was tougher than my ordination council. Doctrinal questions, moral questions, philosophical questions- she wanted to make sure she was marrying someone who will not drive a wedge between her and her God. Even in the past ten years, she has demonstrated this attribute. I am truly blessed!
1. And finally, the number one reason I’m still married God! At the beginning and ending of everything is God. After all is He not the Author and Finisher of our faith? Isn’t He that Creator of the marriage institution? Is He not the Grantor of blessings for “every good gift and every perfect gift cometh from above?” I would be foolish not to give God all the glory for all the happenings (blessings and trials) in our marriage. It was God that led me to Liberty Baptist Church to find my wife. It was God that brought us to Gilbert, Arizona to serve and raise our family at Desert Gateway Baptist Church. It is God that continues to provide for each and every single one of our needs. It is God that has given to us our precious Anabelle. It is God that has brought us through tumultuous times. Why would I steal the praise that rightly belongs to Him? Truly, every reason I have listed before this is a direct result of God’s hand.
By the way, you’ll notice that nowhere on this list will you find what I’ve done. I told some of my teenagers today as we served at Vacation Bible School that as a man, you need to learn to take all the faults. You may not always be wrong but you need to learn to shoulder the burden of shortcomings. That is the example Christ has given the husband in Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.” The sins (faults) of the whole world was placed upon the One who knew no sin. Christ died for the ungodly that’s you and me! It was our fault but yet He bore it all that I might live. If you have never trusted Christ as your Saviour, why not do so today? He’s been waiting for you.
I am thankful to have been married for ten years. I am looking forward, by God’s grace, to a lifetime with Amy. We have seen many miracles together and God has been so good to us. Our prayer on our 10th anniversary is that God would use us to help further His kingdom and strengthen marriages and families. God has done so much for us that we want others to experience above and beyond what they can ever imagine their lives to be.