Jeremiah and I are celebrating 13 years of marriage today. I thought I would take this opportunity to tell you our love story.
Our eyes met from across the room and I instantly knew that he was the one I would marry. Just kidding. That’s not at all how it happened. Here’s the real story.
I had dated the same guy all through high school and he definitely wasn’t prince charming. Let’s skip the details and just agree that I was now damaged. Jeremiah had been through an engagement and bad breakup. Also damaged although in a completely different way.
I did know that I really liked him right away, but he was MUCH older than me (five years, but let’s just go with MUCH). He was handsome, charismatic, and most of all mature. There’s no way he would be interested in me. Remember, I was damaged goods.
Apparently he was never going to ask me out. He thought that I would think he was too old. I ended up telling his brother that I liked him and one thing led to another and we were going on a date. He was taking me to see Armageddon (remember that movie?). He had already seen it and totally ruined the ending for me, so he took me to somehow make up for that. You guys, when he dropped me off, he did not even pull into my driveway. We were both late to play sand volleyball at Sonic with a bunch of our friends, so he dropped me off at the curb and didn’t even get out of the car. Like any girl would, I assumed he didn’t like me. Until two days later, when he showed up on my doorstep with his brother’s motorcycle. We road around town all evening and ended up talking for hours on his porch steps. There are very few times that life parallels a fairy tale. This was one of them. He reached down and touched my face and kissed me. Then I started to feel little rain drops. It’s as if God was saying, “Yep. He’s the one.” And that was the beginning of our story.
We dated for three years while I went to college. Then we married and started a new chapter in our lives. We were going to have a perfect marriage. I’m sure God got a good laugh at that thought, along with every other long-time married couple.
I thought that as time went by we would get to know each other better and better and there would come a time when I knew everything about my husband. But the reality is that people continue to change. I’m always changing. He’s always changing and sometimes it takes all we have to keep that from tearing us apart. We go from moments of feeling so close to moments where we aren’t sure that we have anything in common anymore.
From the beginning, we both agreed that divorce was not an option for us. And I can honestly say that we have never, not even for a moment, entertained that idea. There have been plenty of times where I thought, “How are we going to make this work?” But we both knew that God would fill the gap when neither of us could. And He has been faithful in that.
There have been some difficult times, but there have been some A-MAZ-ING times. I will always cherish the many trips we made to the lake in the boat we purchased shortly after we got married. I can’t imagine life without him making me laugh even when I don’t really want to. Moving from place to place when all we really had was each other to lean on. Bringing our three kids into this world. So many I could never begin to list them all here.
Our marriage isn’t perfect. No one’s is. Maybe it is on Facebook for one day every year, but in real life, everyday life, no one’s marriage is perfect.
But I know God is perfect and sovereign and knew exactly what He was doing when He put Jeremiah and I together. He knew that I had to be in a bad relationship and Jeremiah had to be broken before we could find each other. He knew we would make each other better. That Jeremiah would help me to be more confident and outgoing. And that I would show him how to be compassionate and sensitive. And we know that we can’t make our marriage work without God because it’s hard and there is no such thing as a perfect marriage.
But those moments when it is perfect. Those moments like the other night when we snuck away alone for a boat ride to watch fireworks and Jeremiah surprised me with wine. Those moments make everything else worth while. They’re so much better than anything in a fairytale or anything I could have imagined. They’re perfect.