Today is Minor’s and my 36th wedding anniversary. I can hardly believe it has been 36 years since we said our “I do’s” in a candlelight ceremony in the little Methodist Church I grew up in. I was 22 and Minor was 24…just kids, really. We had only met 8 months previous to our wedding day, but we knew it was right…. and it is still right, 36 years later.
I could never have imagined the future that was before us. Never fathomed the life that would lead us to where we are today. Our lives are completely changed from that time and place. Yes, we are the same people in regards to our beliefs, our morals, our love for family and friends, but our world has changed all around us and rather than lose each other in the process, we held on together.
Today, as I talked with a couple that will be getting married this weekend, it dawned on me that none of us have a clue going into marriage, what or where our lives will lead. We may know we love the other, but we can’t imagine the love that will be there in 36 or more years and how that love will change from one stage to the next. We can consider ourselves truly blessed if during all the changes and stresses taking place within this world we are able to stay together and keep our love a priority.
I have learned many things after being married 36 years. Here are a few…
1. Whether the decision made ended up good or bad, we both made it together. No one gets blamed for a bad decision. No one chooses a bad decision willingly. Whatever happens as a result of a bad decision, is owned by both of us.
2. There is nothing that you could do to make me stop loving you. It’s called fully committed. No way out. Figure it out and move on.
3. Respect for each other. I’ll never say anything to hurt or belittle you. I’ll treat you the way I want you to treat me. How easy is that?
4. Being together, spending time together, talking together, is the most important thing. We need this to keep our bond unbreakable.
5. Honesty. I’ll be honest, but not hurtful honest. You’ll always know my heart.
6. Just laugh. Just smile. Find the humor and it’s so much easier.
7. Keep God in your marriage. He knows the way for us. Trust Him.
Of course, these things are not all that I’ve learned about us over the years, but for sure, they stand out as a few of the most important. There will always be issues that pop up. Financial, health, kids, parents, deaths, loss of jobs, career changes. Life is so dad gum tough! Don’t try to handle it all. God will take care of you if you ask Him.