Monday, June 09, 2008


Seven years ago today, I made a pretty important promise. It was in the front of Faith CRC in Sioux Center that I vowed to spend the rest of my days learning how to love my new Hubby.

Notice there how I said "learning how to love". See, back then I would have just said "loving", but I've since learned that marriage is more about learning each and every day how you can love your spouse.

I was so different back then. I look back at that innocent and ignorant 21 year old bride and shake my head. She really had no idea what she was doing. I don't remember much about her. I don't remember what she thought about or what she dreamed about or what she hoped for. I don't really even remember what she prayed about. But I know that in the years between then and now, she learned some hard lessons. Important lessons.

The journey to Reagan was one that changed me and taught me so much. And the journey with Reagan has given me a new perspective on God as my heavenly Father. My love for her is only a fraction of how much He loves me. And that's completely remarkable to me.

When I got married 7 years ago, I was desperately searching for a place to belong. For someone to come home to. For a person to make my dreams come true. For that feeling of being perfectly and wholly loved. Too often, all that was placed on Hubby. Until I began to see and understand that we both needed all that - but not as much from each other as much as from God. We've been growing and changing and understanding more fully our purpose as His children. And as we do so, our marriage gets stronger.

Bumps along the journey? You bet! I dare not tell you the fights we have had over mashed potatoes. Yeah, sometimes its that stupid. But we no longer fight over side dishes, so we consider this great progress.

I know we're still learning how to love one another. That's probably one of the greatest things I can say about Hubby - that He has been there as I have grown into who I am today, and loved me every step of the way. And I have done the same for him. Realizing we never fully arrive. You're never finished. The journey doesn't really end. But each day, we learn a little more and we understand more clearly that love is something we can't give unless its coming from Him.

I can't sit here and write about how our life has been blissfully perfect and happy and full of dreams come true. We've re-written many of our dreams throughout these years. There have been times when it has been down-right turbulent. We've had to fight to get our friendship back here and there. But we've always had the one thing - the most important thing - in common: love for our Lord and Savior. And in all of the happy times and painful tears, He's been there. All of that gives me great comfort and hope. Because Brian's love for me comes from a great and holy God who never runs out of love, or hope, or grace, or mercy, or comfort, or peace. In fact, his love is ABUNDANT - more than enough! Can you even imagine?

Our marriage hasn't just been a journey of two people making a living and having a family. Its been a journey of faith. It isn't a journey I realized I was starting on 7 years ago. Had you asked me then, I probably would have described it more like that first sentence - making a living and having a family. But I'm glad that God wrote the story the way He did. Because this has been so much better.

I love you honey!!


Laura K. said...

Wow Jean - 7 years! Congrats to you & Brian!!!!
That is some great thoughts & writing, once again : )

Anonymous said...

Jean, it has only taken you 7 years to learn what has taken me 50 years. I was there and I heard your vow and I remeber it and so does God. He is faithful! And He is the great Lover that can and so wants to fulfill all our dreams. We are His Bride-Yeah! Aunt Mary