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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A Nine Year Ride!

Nine years ago I married my best friend. It's hard to believe that it's been nine years. When I think back about what I would compare our marriage to, the one thing that pops into my mind is a roller coaster. Our marriage has been a roller coaster ride.

Most of the time when people think of roller coaster they think, "Oh my goodness it's been up-and-down, rocky, tough, hard and by the time you make it to the end, you're so happy that it's over.

But that's not how I see things at all. Whenever I go to Disney or to another park, I always look forward to the roller coasters, or any thrill ride for that matter. In my mind, there's no better ride in the park then the roller coaster.

The roller coaster is where I get my thrill. It keeps me on the edge of my seat. There are quick turns and quick drops and sometimes you go upside down. When I first started going on roller coasters, I'll admit, I was a little scared, but the more I rode them, the more I loved them. Whenever the coaster ends, my first thought is, "I wish I could do that again."

Our marriage has been a roller coaster. There's been crazy quick turns. We've been upside down and inside out and it's been scary, but I wouldn't change a thing.

There's nothing calm about a roller coaster, and in our marriage, I don't think I'd use the word "calm" to describe it. I'd say this picture is a little more accurate:

God has brought us through so many ups and downs, through so many unexpected turns, but at the end of the day I know my wife and I would both agree that we wouldn't change (almost) anything. Through it all, we have seen God shower us with His unmatched grace!

We are by no means perfect, but we are united on this one goal: that our marriage is not about making each other fulfilled, because we know we don't have the ability to do that...our marriage is about conforming to the image of the love that we have for each other, the way we raise our children, in the church that we partner with, and in our everyday lives. 

Lately my wife and I have been reading Francis and Lisa Chan's new book You And Me Forever. And I can't help but agree with them when they say, "When two people are right with Him, they will be right with each other."

Marriage is not ultimately about pleasing the other person. Marriage is not about getting great gifts or having the most exciting romance. Marriage is about two people united in life to serve Jesus. 

If we don't focus on Christ, then we focus on SELF. It's that simple!

Paul Tripp puts it this way, "Marriage is war between the kingdom of self and the kingdom of God. The minute you go into it for happiness, you will always end up with conflict. Marriage is a tool for sanctification."

I think I heard Matt Chandler say, "Frustration is birthed out of unmet expectations."

I am so thankful for a wife who, more than anything else, wants to point me to the cross. I am thankful that she doesn't merely "yes" me to death, but she challenges my thinking and pushes me further into the arms of my Savior. 

Okay, more Francis Chan quote..."If Godzilla tried to step on you, then vampires stuck their teeth in you, angry hobbits boiled you in stew, I'd stop the world and melt with you. If Dora and Boots came out to play, then Swiper came, swiped you away, I'd grab a map, and I'd search all day, when I find him...make him pay."

Proverbs 12:4a says, "An excellent wife is the crown of her husband" and Proverbs 18:22 says, "He who finds a wife, finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord."

Louise, I love you so much. Happy Anniversary! I love the roller coaster ride we're on, and I don't ever want to get off! Let's ride it out together. (yes, I am one of those cheese ball, annoying husbands)

I love you babe!

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