My marriage is better than average, is yours?

Posted: March 13th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: My Thoughts | 1 Comment »

Today, March 13 2013, Bethany and I celebrate our fourteenth year of marriage!

Beth was barely 18, and I 21 that cold day in 1999. We heard from many people (even close friends), “You’re too young. You’ll never make it.” Ha! I laugh in your faces! Not only are we still married, we’re happy and LOVING it!

The U.S. Census Bureau released a report in 2005 stating that the average first-time marriage lasts 8 years. According to that statistic, we are KILLING IT! I love when cold, hard fact back up our awesomeness.

It’s been a great fourteen years. There have been tough years as well as some easy and through it all, God has been faithful to us and we to each other. We have five children ages 11, 9, 7, 6, 4, and child number six due in May.

I love ‘em, I love ‘em, I love ‘em. And I love my sugar baby even more today than the day I married her (and she is ten times hotter now than then too!)

The study I linked to has some interesting stuff in it. 76% of first time marriages between 1955-1959 lasted 20 years or longer, while marriages from 1975-1979 only had 58% last at least that long. Also, forget the “Seven year itch,” more first-time marriages end in year two (1 in 12 in year two as opposed to 1 in 20 in year seven).

So, to encourage all you you married people (and soon to be!), if we can do it, anyone can. And remember, it’s not about you — it’s about both of you.  As for words to live by, I can only speak from the husband perspective.  The Bible says to love your wife as Christ loves the church (Eph. 5:25). He laid down His life for us, so give your life for her.  He had no complaints, even though He knew it would be tough, and He still gave his life knowing He might never receive anything in return, so quit your complaining and help her out once in awhile.  Also, 1 Corinthians 13 is a great place to learn about love as well.


By the Word of Our Testimony

Posted: March 4th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Spirituality | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

By the Word of Our TestimonyA few weeks ago I gave a friend a ride to Rochester, which is about a three hour drive. No, acquaintance is more accurate, though I believe now we are friends.

See, there’s only a few things one can do when stuck in a car for a few hours with another individual. You can listen to the radio, talk, or sleep. If you know me at all my only option is to talk.

So talk we did.

It started with the small chit-chat, “How’s it going?” Blah. Blah. Blah. But before long we were sharing our history with each other.

My friend is a single guy, and I’m a fourteen-year marriage veteran with five kids (number six due in three months!). He started asking me how I liked marriage and family life. With each question he drew wisdom out of me like buckets of water from a well. I told an almost perfect stranger about past failures and victories few people know. Before long he was telling me his story and what God had done in his life to make him the man he is today.

It was powerful.

Do I think what I said will make a long-term difference in his life and how he someday treats his wife? I hope so. I hope he avoids some of the pitfalls I fell into and that he develops the type of relationship that love stories are written about. I may never know.

One thing I do know is that God accomplished something in us. This past Sunday Peter Hopper shared at our church about the power of our testimony. When we open our mouths to speak, not only is the other person strengthened but so are we. We are better men, better Christians today because of that talk. We shared our lives, our testimonies of how God has dealt kindly with us despite our transgressions and in doing so broke some of the lies of the devil in our lives–that we are alone and no one can understand our struggles or has overcome them.

And I know it can’t just be me. I believe there’s something deep inside us all that longs to be seen by others. To be known.

Sharing our story with others is part of that. Anyone can love the “good” us, the façade we put on display when we pretend that everything is OK and we are perfect (or at least better than “so and so”). One of love’s greatest powers is knowing the good and the bad about a person and still loving him despite his failures.

Answer that call deep inside you and share your story with someone today. Heck, share it here. Not only will it bring victory into your life, it will bring it to theirs as well.

Revelation 12:11 ” And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.” (ESV, emphasis added)