15 Oct

“Marriage is an alliance entered into by a man who can’t sleep with the window shut, and a woman who can’t sleep with the window open.”  ~ George Bernard Shaw

I had to laugh when I saw the quote I snagged for today.  It sure fit my parents to a tee.  My dad would sleep with the window open even in the winter while my mom would have an electric blanket on her side of their bed.  They differed in so many different ways as well.  There were many times that I asked myself when I was very young, “How did these two ever get together anyway?”  It mystified me that two people often so radically different would decide to marry.

Of course, as I grew older, I learned that there was this thing called “love” that caused people seemingly different to be attracted to one another and to decide to commit themselves to one another.  Knowing that they had differences, they decided to work on them, to compromise whenever possible, and to try to keep each other happy and fulfilled.

That’s a huge commitment.  It is hard enough joining two people who share the same feelings and plans.  It is quite something else to join people who can be so very different.  Yet, that is what marriage is all about.  It is the union of two souls and if that union is strong enough, it can overlook the differences and seek concord.

Today is my parents wedding anniversary.  If they were still alive, they would be celebrating seventy-nine years together.  Truth be told?  I was surprised they stayed together.  There were many times in my life that I thought they might be better off separate.

Their marriage was not always a happy one to look at and, I am sure, it was probably not always a happy one to live.  My dad could be very volatile and often treated my mom poorly.  I learned that a big component of this thing called love is another thing called forgiveness.  They would fight and squabble but, in the end, there would be forgiveness and peace or, at the very least, detente.

For all of you who are in secure, happy marriages, I wish you many more years together.  For those who are in marriages that might be a bit more tense and contentious, hang in there, love one another, and forgive as best as you can.  For those whose marriages may have ended, I pray that you find peace in your heart.  For those preparing for marriage, remember that it takes commitment and work each day.

FAITH ACTION:  Pray for all married couples, that God bless them this day.  Pray, as well. for those who have lost a spouse due to death or divorce, that they might find peace in their lives.