Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Happy Anniversary

Yesterday Stephanie and I celebrated our fourteenth wedding anniversary. We each made cards for one another and I would like to share the cover of the card that she shared with me.

How blessed I am to have a wife, my very own body, to support me and complete me in this life. Such a wife who clings first to Christ crucified and then to the one to whom Christ has united her is a gift to be celebrated second only to the gift of life in Christ itself. Of course such a thing does not happen by accident. The Lord brought us together through circumstances that neither of us would have anticipated resulting in such a blessing. Neither of us were even looking or hoping for such a blessing.

Yet in bringing us together through those difficult times, the Lord showed us that He did indeed have someone for each of us, someone who shared the spiritual need and yearning for the pure life that is found only in Christ. This is the foundation that led us to realize that life together would indeed be a good thing.

We both were 32 years old. Neither expected marriage. Yet today we enter into our 15th year together. And we give thanks to God continually.

Yet it is not what we find good in ourselves that makes us happy, for we surely cause each other times of distress and disappointment. No, it is in knowing that whatever fault we find in ourselves and each other is reconciled in Christ crucified. It is in His grace, mercy, and peace that we find ourselves drawn back to one another to be reconciled by His forgiveness.

This is why even in the times that I have felt weak and have thought of throwing in the towel in the arena of fighting the good fight of faith that my dear bride has bolstered me and reminded me that surrender is not an option. There have been many times that I have asked her whether she would have me stop holding the services in our home and simply to seek a pastor and congregation where we could simply be members. She responds, "I'm not going back to where I come home empty or with even less than I started out with. You can't do that. If you quit, where will we receive the pure Gospel that we need? If you quit, I'll have no place to worship."

How could I ever have hoped to find such a wife for myself? How can I not rejoice in God's goodness manifested through my dear bride?

This is not to say that we never disagree. We surely face challenges, even when speaking of Christ. Yet in asking, "What do the Scriptures actually say?" and "Does this direct us to rely solely upon Christ crucified?" we always come to agreement. Most often we find ourselves saying to one another, "Oh wow! I never saw that before!" It really does not matter which of us brings forth the new treasure from God's storehouse. What matters is that it truly is in accord with the entire counsel of God and directs our hearts to rely more fully upon Christ crucified and the life that is in Him.

So, Stephanie and I embark upon another year of God's goodness, and we do so united as one in Him in His body and then also united as one by Him in our body.

Thank you for sharing in our joy.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Gefeliciteerd (Congrat's)!
Very nice to hear :)
Also nice to add faces to the ones behind the e-mails, & sermons!!

The Lord bless you and keep you as you continue your walk in the Savior... together.