Marriage Ministries

     My husband and I just celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary.  I like the old joke that we’ve been married 39 years and 9 of them have been happy.  Just kidding.  Single gals, divorced gals, and widowed gals, God bless you.  You’re so very important, too, but every now and then we wives need a boost.  Just recently, a friend told me she’s filing for divorce number three!  Another friend admitted to toying with an affair.  Of course, I advised her against that path to escaping her marriage issues.  

     Sometimes I want to think marriage gets easier over time.  But, not really.  It’s still a work in progress.  The issues change, the challenges evolve, and needs may vary.  It’s possible that health issues become more common.  A friend of mine just got diagnosed with a brain tumor.  Imagine that stress.  Finances may become more stable, but there are plans for retirement to make.  Time demands of caring for elderly parents or babysitting the grandkids compete for time as a couple.    

      Let me tell you, we are in the throes of it right now.  An underground pipe burst in our home, and our house underwent significant reconstruction and renovation.  I couldn’t do laundry or dishes.  I tried not to stress; I tried to remember that there are women in third world countries who wouldn’t know indoor plumbing or a washing machine in the first place.  My husband worked as hard as he could to supervise and help with the needed repairs.  However, the impatience, inconvenience, and irritation can add a stress to a relationship. 

      Of course, there are blessings to a long-term marriage.  My kids have imperfect, if committed role models.  My grandson has the stability of extended family.  Even the simpler things become more important:  the continuity of a shared history, a warm back to snuggle to, a sense of unity and familiarity at family events.  

      We still “work” at keeping the spark going–planning new things or having a goal or event to look forward to.  I’m thinking for the big 40th, maybe we’ll renew our vows Elvis style in Las Vegas! 

      And, we still attend marriage conferences.  We enjoy the encouragement, the effort to work on relationship goals, and perhaps some new insight.  Vineyard will be sponsoring a marriage date night on August 23rd at 7 p.m.  The cost is a modest $30 per couple.  The date night will feature Christian comedians and speakers who can poke fun at our marriage foibles yet provide relatable stories and inspiration.  To purchase tickets, you can go to:  Come join your fellow married couples and celebrate your work in progress.


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