Friday, December 10, 2010
Lani and I just celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary with a trip to Kiawah, where we had a few days together to reflect on the countless blessings of marriage and family. To commemorate the occasion we pledged to write lists of forty reasons why each of us loves the other. The idea was a little intimidating when we first discussed it, but I quickly found the task easy and fun. I finally had to edit down to keep my list at forty. It was an occasion to reflect back on our early days together, remembering that she had a Mustang when we met, that she told a Marine general that she would take care of ‘happy hour’ for her Marine, and how she waved her Redskin pennant in the midst of hostile Rams fans in the LA Colisieum. I remembered how she took charge and kept going during long separations. I recalled her heroic commitment to natural childbirth, motherhood, Outward Bound, mission trips to Egypt and Rwanda, and so much more.
In recalling these past events in our marriage, I couldn’t help remembering some of our fights and disagreements, although these have blessedly faded into the past. Our arguments seem to get ever shorter and shorter. At every stage of our marriage, we have tried to stay focused on our home, our children, and all the positive attributes that we love in each other. We have seen other couples focus on the things that irritate them and watched these irritants grow under constant scrutiny. In their wedding ceremonies, many couples include the oft-quoted scripture on love from First Corinthians. On our 40th anniversary we would like to take the opportunity to suggest that every couple make this passage a daily focus in building a stronger marriage:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it keeps no record of wrongs . . . It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. ~1 Corinthians 13:4-7