An Unconventional Marriage

Well, my husband and I celebrated our 6th year anniversary today with just the two of us hanging out together over pizza, sandwiches, and bbq wings with our living room graced with a bouquet of roses.  It may not seem like an unconventional anniversary date but we made it work with plans to go out this weekend to a dinner and a movie.

Our marriage has not been the normal wedding yet it works especially shortly after our first anniversary, my husband started to lose his legs due to the diabetes.  I was told I should leave him and start a new life, and I almost took the bait.  Yet, as I started to drive away, I realized I made those vows so many years ago and I need to honor them.  Since then, the marriage has had its struggles as we adjusted to a new partner – second marriage for both of us – and learning to live with someone after more than five years on our own.

Then, came the affects of the diabetes yet through it all we still manage to hang onto each other as I worry and wonder if we will have more years together.  Yet I know his life and our marriage is in God’s hands even after another mad dash this last week to urgent care for an infection in his hand.

Statistics show that terminally ill and/or a disabled partner will put a strain on a marriage and it does yet as the saying goes, what does not kill us, only makes us stronger.  This unconventional marriage has made me stronger and helped me understand why my own mother has stayed with my father.  As I think of my mom’s own strength, I believe, like me, she keeps God in the marriage and we let Him walk beside us during the ups and downs of a marriage that has its struggles – rather it be through physical and/or emotional illness.

After all, according to Matthew 19:6 (NIV) “therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” 

Yes, I do believe God has joined my husband and I together.  I may not ever know why since we met online through a dating site but in the meantime, I will enjoy this marriage along with the sickness and health, good times and bad times, for richer and poorer…letting no one or anything like an illness separate us.

As I write this, I am reminded of the the following poem that was read to me by Dene’s uncle, on behalf of my husband.

The Apache Wedding Blessing 

 Now you will feel no storms, for each of you will be shelter to the other. 

Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other.

Now there is no loneliness, for each of you is companion to the other, You are two persons, but there is one life before you, and one home.

Turn together to look at the road you traveled, to reach this—the hour of your happiness. It stretches behind you into the past.

Look to the future that lies ahead. A long and winding, adventure-filled road, whose every turn means discovery, new hopes, new joys, new laughter, and a few shared tears.

May happiness be your companion, May beauty surround you both in the journey ahead; And through all the years to come. Go this day to your dwelling place and enter into your days together.

May your days be good and long upon the earth. Your adventure has just begun!

In conclusion, I am praying for each of your marriages and if you’re still single, I am praying that God sends you the one that you have been longing for.

So, what has kept your marriage strong during both the good and the bad?

What happens if you don’t listen…especially to your wife?

So, as reported on an earlier blog, hubby went to the hospital earlier this week and went through a series of tests.  ERs do need to make sure they cover all the bases!   We thought it might be his heart or an infection.  Alas, it turned out to be simple dehydration…

Dehydration…it’s what happens when you do not drink enough fluid; however, my husband needs to be careful since his kidneys do not function and if there is too much fluid, that can cause problems too.

Before we headed to Nevada for a vacation, I warned hubby to stay on top of his fluids and make sure he was drinking enough water especially in the dry heat and in our area, where we experienced above average temperatures.  Did hubby listen?  No…he went in the hole without enough water and landed in the hospital (a place he does not like to go to).

Though many of you can relate to your spouse, a child, or parent not listening to you, there is one voice that we – including me – do not always listen to.

Or, we ignore that small quiet voice telling us what to do.

This person we all ignore is God as He gives us guidance, answers prayers (not always the answer we were expecting) or when He is casting a vision into our lives.

Why don’t we listen:

  1. By human nature, we have a tendency to disobey
  2. With many distractions, we would rather listen to other voices
  3. Like my husband, we think we have it under control
  4. With prayer, we want a different answer
  5. Hearing gets worse as you continue to ignore the voice of the Holy Spirit
  6. Simply, we don’t have time to listen or we ignore it completely

As we prepare for our journey, we are trying to listen to that still small voice and the direction He wants us to go.  It is difficult and I am preparing for a new class on Monday called The Spiritual Journey: The Integrated Approach of Henri Nouwen where I’ll learn to listen to that voice more and focus on listening to God and the purpose He has for our lives.

Finally, if you don’t listen, you can land yourself in hot water for not listening (like my husband) or end up on the wrong path….

So, what direction are you ignoring?  Are you ignoring that still small voice?

If so, take time to be still and quiet while listening for that still small voice.  This can be done through prayer and reading His word.  It can also be done through turning off electronics like phones, computers, etc.  Even getting away for at least an hour or so, if you can.   And, remember, He is listening to you too…

Finally….remember to listen to your spouse!  Often the Holy Spirit is using them or they have sound, sage advice…