|Dianne, in her “space” in our family room, enjoying Mother’s Day|
It is a beautiful springtime Sunday afternoon. I have just returned from a walk around our neighborhood with Dianne, my wife of nearly 40 years. You heard me right. In three months and six days Dianne and I will celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary.
In one sense, however, it seems longer. We met in January 1971 at a fraternity party. Again, you heard me right. Eighteen months later we stood before God and our witnesses (and my father, who was officiating) and said, “We do until death does us part.”
In the marriage ceremony long used by the Churches of God we say, “We walk this earth as unfinished creations until we find completion in the love of another.” For me that has been more than true. She completes me so completely that I cannot imagine life without her, nor remember any more what life was like before her.
Dianne has the spiritual gift of mercy (that has been extended to me on more than one occasion), a heart for worship that has been infectious to those around us, and a passion for prayer that sustains us every day. Where I am a man of engagement, Dianne is a woman of reflection. Where I boldly embrace challenges, she prays for the fruitfulness of God’s servant.
Dianne taught my children to read (well ahead of school) and taught them about Jesus (while Steve was often busily teaching others about Jesus.) It was she that invited each of my four children to cross over the bridge Christ’s death had laid down for their salvation, and wept for joy when I baptized each one of them as disciples of Jesus Christ.
My children rise up and her call her blessed and my grandchildren think she is really cool.
Today she is a substitute teacher specializing in autistic and learning disabled children. She leads worship with an unmistakable love of Christ. She wrote a children’s book for her grandchildren and encourages me to live a life that is physically and spiritually health. And give her a classroom with willing students and they are in the presence of a gifted teacher.
She likes to let me cook and does my laundry as an act of love (and also so I don’t have to wear dirty socks). She coaches me to be a saner and more compassionate driver. She reminds me that patience is a virtue that I still haven’t mastered after 60 years. She checks my shirt tail so I won’t be embarrassed when I preach and cheers for my Tigers or commiserates with my agony.
I have a good wife–no, a magnificent one. A trophy wife–if you remember the prize of the high calling of Christ Jesus.
PS – She doesn’t know I am blogging this even though she is sitting a few feet away doing jigsaw puzzles on her computer. She won’t see this until it is posted tomorrow morning. She may be embarrassed when she reads it, but I know she will forgive me. – STEVE