Thursday, February 16, 2017

I will be here

For Valentine's Day, Steven Curtis Chapman released a new music video for the song "I Will be Here".

Curtis and I really love this song, and it was almost in our wedding 16 years ago. As I listened to the song, I found myself chuckling as I thought about that 19 year old girl and 21 year old boy who heard that song while planning their wedding and were totally confident in making bold promises to one another. We were so in love, so smitten, so confident in our love.

16 years later, I'm still just as in love, just as smitten and even more confident in our love.

This past semester, along with two other couples, Curtis and I read The Meaning of Marriage by Keller. During one chapter, Keller discusses how marriage is the only horizontal covenant (covenant between two people) AND vertical covenant (covenant between people and God). He discussed how the importance of marriage is the promise, the covenant, that carries a marriage through the times when the warm, romantic, fuzzies might not be there. That 19 year old girl and 21 year old boy could make those bold promises, having no real idea what they were getting themselves into, because of how the Father had drawn them together in love. But now, they can still make bold promises with a deeper knowledge of what that looks like in real life.

Though I would quickly and easily say that Curtis is my best friend and that I love being his wife, we have seen some tough times in our marriage. The death of a parent. Finishing college. Working two jobs. Surprise pregnancies. A master's degree. The loss of a job. Major health issues for our children. Financial stress. There have been times when we're just had to go to bed saying, "We've got to just go to sleep and live to fight another day." I've recently been able to look back at some of those challenging times with thankfulness, seeing how God has grown each of us individually and together as a couple. Our current motto is "Team work makes the dream work." I'm so thankful that I get to do life with Curtis by my side.

Marriage is hard. Marriage is beautiful. How thankful I am to be in a marriage with a man who loves the Lord, who loves me and is faithful to me, who passionately loves our family, and who I know will be here for me.

Monday, January 23, 2017

March for Women?

I currently have multiple tabs open on my computer, all articles on this weekend's March for Women. I've spent a fair amount of time this weekend thinking through my opinions on the matter. Curtis and I actually started dialogue about a similar topic on Thursday as we drove to Houston.
And after days of thinking, researching, reading and praying, I'm still at a loss. How, at this point in time, am I supposed to teach my daughter to be feminine yet strong? How should I encourage her that biblical marriage is a good and right thing when society is screaming at her to be equal and not submissive to her husband? How do I teach her that a gentle and quiet spirit is of great worth when she's being told to make her voice heard? How to I help her grow into a woman who thinks for herself yet is gracious and listens to others around her even when others have differing opinions? More than anything, my heart is burdened for the loss of the sanctity of life. After all my reading, I feel like that's the main issue dividing women in our nation. Once again, it comes down to the abortion issue. So while there are a lot of things that I'm unsure about, here's what I plan to teach my daughter: YOU are equal to a man. But you are created with different strengths. Don't let a battle for equality overshadow your uniqueness and strengths as a woman. EVERY life is precious. Just because you are a woman, you do not have the right to end a pregnancy. That is ending the life of another human. YOU have a say over your body. You should be treated with great respect. But you are not entitled to receive medical services just because you have a uterus. Elizabeth, being a woman right now is hard and challenging. But know that you are surrounded by people who love you and who will help you as you navigate all this. Work hard towards your goals and dreams. Grow in grace and wisdom.