Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Thirty Years and Thirty Reasons

My friend, Sandy, and I sat outside on the church steps talking one evening after choir practice. A man came out of church and walked by us, then stopped and pivoted. “What are y’all talking about?” he asked.

I recognized him as an attorney who had given his dramatic testimony in church a few months earlier. He lost his eight-year-old daughter, his best friend, and his marriage within a two-year period and then had a “Damascus Road” type experience with God.

“Sharing what God is doing in our lives this week,” Sandy said.

A big smile spread across his face.

I honestly don’t remember anything after that, except that on the way home that night, I was so thrown off by those minutes we spent talking, I took a wrong turn and got lost.

Jerry and I a couple of months after our first date. We're at the top of a 14,000 foot mountain we'd just climbed with friends while adult guests at a Young Life Camp in Colorado.
This week, that man, Jerry, and I will celebrate our thirtieth wedding anniversary.

Like everyone else, our life together has been filled with all kinds of challenges―serious health diagnoses, loss of loved ones, financial stress, family issues, and other strains. I’m embarrassed to say that sometimes we get caught in petty disagreements like what’s the best way to get to the home improvement store and other meaningless rifts.

But the joy we've experienced in our lives far outweighs anything else. Still, after all this time, I sure do love the guy.

So, Jerry, after thirty years, here are thirty reasons I’m so very glad I’m married to you.

These are in the most random order and certainly not a complete list, but it’s a start.

1.       Your dimples.

2.       You played football at the University of Georgia on that SEC championship team and all the wonderful things I’ve gotten to be part of because you did.

3.       You are a wonderful cook.

4.       You don’t mind when I move furniture around.

5.       You let me have all these cats even though you have to do bad jobs because of itthe three p’s as you would say.

6.       Your smile can light up a room.

7.       You’re great in a crisis.

8.       You’re the best preacher I know.

9.       You wear starched white shirts and you send them to the laundry instead of expecting me to starch and iron them.

10.   You’re a good whistler.

11.   You’re a deep thinker.

12.   You can use a sewing machine. Who would guess?

13.   You have survival skills.

14.   You let me drag you to all the art and music events I like even though I know you’re sometimes bored silly. You even act interested.

15.   You’re a good proofreader.

16.   You’re unpretentious.

17.   I could probably paint the house zebra striped and you wouldn’t say anything.

18.   You have always been a big encourager to me in my writing and painting pursuits.

19.   You’re willing to take the small closet. Thank you very much.

20.   You don’t carry a grudge . . . towards anybody, about anything.

21.   Your Biblical knowledge astounds me.

22.   You can build things.

23.   You overlook my infinite list of shortcomings.

24.   You look past my wrinkles and tell me I’m beautiful.

25.   You sing Victory in Jesus on key.

26.   You’re so sweet with that brown dog, Lucy.

27.   You love kids and all their noisiness.

28.   You’re a fabulous grandfather to Walker and Sara Alden.

29.   You’re an amazing father to our two miracle children, Aaron and Bethany, and Mari, the daughter whose life I was blessed to be part of because I married you.

30.   You love God more than you love me or anyone else. I suppose that’s what drew me to you in the beginning.  

Jerry,  when we have our anniversary dinner later in the week, I'll be the one wearing the same dress we wore on our first date. We are not wealthy by worldly standards. Our possessions do not amount to much in monetary value, but we are rich in so many other ways. Thank you for these amazing, challenging, exciting, surprising, blessed thirty years. It has been my privilege and honor to spend them with you. I love you more!!!
"And now to Him who can keep you (us) on your (our) feet, standing tall in his bright presence, fresh and celebrating--to our one God, our only Savior, through Jesus Christ, our Master, be glory, majesty, strength, and rule before all time, and now, and to the end of all time. Yes."  (Jude 24-25  The Message).

 Remember Faith in the Fashion District is now available for presale at many online retailers and at Amazon.

“As a Ford model during the 1980’s, the New York fashion world was my world. Beverly’s encouraging stories of how God moved in that sphere help us realize that no matter where we are— even on Seventh Avenue—God wants to use us for His glory.”
Nancy Stafford
Actress (“Matlock”), Speaker, and Author  



Julie Garmon said...

Oh, so beautiful—from your friend who’ll be celebrating 40 years in December.

Unknown said...

30 years! Wow! That trip to Silver Cliff was even well before that! Great trip! Wonderful tribute to your wonderful husband and your beautiful marriage!

Laurie Ecke said...

How can this be 30 years ago? It seems like yesterday. Your beautiful words made me cry. You two had a magic of love and faith all those years ago, and it shines even brighter today.

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