Tomorrow is my wedding anniversary, but since we will be on the road I am posting this a day early. This is our 39th anniversary, my wife is not always happy with me being so open with how many years we have been married. It’s not that she is ashamed of being married to me, at least I don’t think that is the reason. She has said to me that I don’t need to emphasize the number because that makes people start calculating how old we are, so let me just say that we got married when we were 12 (or maybe a couple of years later). Also, honey, since our kids are all in their 30’s and we are about to welcome grandchild #9, I think they have it figured out.
Let me start by wishing my beautiful bride a very happy anniversary. She will have many, many, many jewels in her crown just for enduring me for these years. We have a great marriage, not perfect, but great. Having a great marriage that lasts takes work, but it is worth it. It is very much worth it. Some of the work is because we have a lot of differences, but some of those differences are also what makes it exciting.
I love my wife more than any words on paper, or a computer screen, can possibly express. I also have a much deeper love for her today than I did 39 years ago. How awesome is that? Things are much different now than they were on that Saturday afternoon in Flint, Michigan. We have 3 awesome kids who married 3 awesome people who are now our kids as well. Our kids have blessed us with 8, soon to be 9, phenomenal grandkids. I love being Jody’s husband. I love being a Dad and I am stunned at how fun it is to be a grandpa.
We have lived in 8 different states. I became a public school teacher and coach after graduating from college and 5 years later I became a full-time pastor. I have continued to coach throughout the years. The churches I served have been small, 40 when we arrived at one, to larger, a couple of them were running 600 when as we departed, and everything in between. The constant has been that my wife has been my partner. She was a part of my student’s lives when I taught, she has always been the team mom when I coach and she is a true partner with me in ministry. I have often suspected that people have always been more grieved to see her go than me whenever we have moved, and I understand.
My wife is my biggest supporter and encourager, but is willing to express if she feels I need to do something differently. We do many things together, but have many different interests. We laugh a lot, often at ourselves (of course that means the rest of the time we are laughing at someone else, but not any of you reading this post). I cannot imagine life without her, and I don’t want to imagine being a pastor without her. I am still surprised after all these years that she said yes to be my wife. I am a charter member of the “Married Out of My League” club.
Happy Anniversary honey. I love you. I am looking forward to many more years together even if you don’t want people to know how many years we are celebrating.