It was a beautiful day when we buried her. The sky was blue. The sun was shining and there were a few wispy, white clouds floating in the air. But it was hot under that blue sky.
When people find out that I have buried a child they often say, “that must be the most difficult thing ever” or something like that. But I usually tell them something like, “yes, it was hard. But it would be harder to bury my husband. John is my best friend. When Amy died and I cried, he was there to hold me. He is still here to hold me today. If he dies and I cry, there is no one to hold me.”
And I believe that with all of my being.
I am blessed to be married to my best friend. To spend time doing life with someone who loves me as much as I love him. But we didn’t arrive at the stage of being best friends without some hard work.
Without some loss and heartache.
Without some discussion and some angry words.
It is called life.
It is not easy, but it is worth investing in the life we have.
A few years ago, I was sitting around a table at a local restaurant with some female work colleagues. One woman was getting a divorce after being married for more than 20 years. The conversation turned to marriage and husbands. Another woman said that she had been blessed with 2 good husbands because she had been widowed earlier in life and remarried. The one getting a divorce said “Mary has a really good husband! John has a good sense of humor. He is kind and considerate. He is….” and she continued sharing my husband’s good traits. Then another one at the table said, “I have a good husband. But I don’t appreciate him enough.”
It is easy to get caught up in doing married life and forget to appreciate our spouse. We find ourselves knee deep in diapers and burp rags. We can never go to the bathroom by ourselves. And sleep is something we would dream about if we ever got to sleep and dream!
Or maybe the kids are now in school and we are running a shuttle service between 5 different activities on any given weeknight and rarely have time for more than a quick word to our spouse as we pass each other in the driveway.
You might not even have kids but are caught up in your career or volunteer work or another worthwhile cause but don’t take the time to say “I love you” or acknowledge the things your spouse does to make life better for both of you.
It is easy to fall into this pattern. But with some work, we can change the pattern and make our marriage better. It is important to remember that a good marriage doesn’t just happen. A good marriage requires hard work. An investment of time, an investment of self, and an investment of emotions.
One of the things that I have always done is pray for my husband and if you are a follower of Grace Table and a regular reader of this blog, then you might be a praying person too. Prayer is a powerful tool and we should not underestimate it’s power when it comes to our marriage.
A few years ago I had the privilege of hearing Kathi Lipp speak at a conference and then spent 20 minutes in an elevator with her (going up and down) chatting about the power of prayer and how it can change things. She had written a book called Praying God’s Word for Your Husband. I received a copy of the book at the conference and I read it. And it changed the way I prayed for my husband.
If you are struggling in your marriage and you feel you can’t pray for your spouse, then I encourage you to check out Kathi’s book. When it came to praying for my husband, it was a game changer for me.
Image Credit: Austin Call