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Our church is in the middle of a series on love and marriage. The sermons have been thought-provoking and inspiring.  Two of my favorite points over the last weeks have been:

  1. “Falling in love requires a pulse, staying in love requires a plan.” – Pastor Dave Guernsey
  2. “Mom is the favorite.” – Pastor Peter Degon

What wonderful reminders that we need to choose everyday to love our spouse and treat them with the respect and total commitment that they deserve. I have pages of notes and a renewed awareness of my actions toward my husband.

There is only one thing that I have not yet heard that I think is an important piece of the conversation, especially in my house. When I married my husband, we both promised to love each other “in sickness and in health.” My husband certainly got the short end of that deal. For some couples those words are just words, or perhaps eventualities to be considered later. In my marriage, they are part of daily life. Taking care of my physical and mental health is an everyday consideration. There may be months were neither of us things much about it. Inevitably, there comes a day when I can barely get out of bed and my husband has to take over getting the kids out the door to school and doing the dishes and laundry, all while working full-time.

I am blessed to have a and understanding husband who seems to take the roller coaster of autoimmune disease far more in stride than I do. Perhaps it just appears that way because he is so good at taking care of all of us. I cannot guess the stress that these difficult weeks put on him.

While I sit in church next to my best friend, I think how much more do I need to affirm him and lift him up when I can, knowing there will be times I cannot. This too is part of the give and take of marriage. I just think the see-saw tilts a bit to one side most of the time. These thoughts make me aware that I need to be extra vigilant in telling my husband how much I appreciate him, not just thinking it.

I am also going to take Pastors Peter’s suggestion to heart and tell myself, “I’m going to love my husband today with sacrificial extravagant love even if I don’t feel like it right now.”  I might also make him some chocolate chip cookies.

In Sickness and In Health

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