Seventeen years ago today I pledged to spend a lifetime with my sweetheart... my best friend... my 'crush'... my destiny...
(I can't even say that without remembering George McFly, adoringly declaring to his crush, Lorraine, "I'm your density"!)
Amid the craziness of the day, one of my sweet daughters brought us a gift and card she had made. This is what it said:
Dear Mom and Dad,
I hope it is a great one!
17 years of generosity,
17 years of admiration,
17 years of fighting,
17 years of hanging up the phone in fury,
17 years of love.
I love you!
Song of Soloman 2:2 "Like a lily among thorns is my darling among maidens."
I'm glad to see that she has a realistic picture of love... has a realistic portrait of faithfulness...has a security born from knowing that her parents really did mean the "until death us do part" part... has a common shared experience that demonstrates that difficulties-dealt-with don't mean death to a marriage, but actually strengthen it... that "fighting" - having a disagreement and then working through it all with honesty and grace and forgiveness and mutual forbearance and respect - is a sign of a healthy marriage...
We went to a "communication for couples" seminar a couple of weeks ago. One of the things we heard - and truly believe - is the message that, "Absence of conflict is not the sign of a healthy marriage. Working through conflict is the sign of a healthy marriage."
And I would go so far as to say that it is the sign of a healthy anything... a healthy friendship, a healthy family, a healthy church, a healthy individual....
So, here's to 17 years of love, indeed.