Today is a day for honoring!
Today my parents have been married for 45 years! November 6, 1965. Their story is one I truly cherish and I have them tell it often because it makes me smile. Just a couple of country kids who fell in love.
Dad was in the Vietnam war, Mom was still in high school. He called her up one day and said, "I'll be on leave in about a month - let's get married!" And that's exactly what they did! Then, my Dad went back to the war for 14 months and my Mom finished school.
So often we hear of Veterans of big wars being interviewed and celebrated. So I decided to interview my Mom about this wonderful day in history - for they are indeed veterans of marriage!
I asked her what she remembers about that day,
November 6, 1965.
Here is what she said:
- Dad's best friend was a little upset he was going to miss the Opening Day of Deer Season
- All her bridesmaids had those big funny hats
- Everything was so different then - and yet still the same as today
- She recognized she was a young married woman, with a huge potential of becoming a widow, as Dad went back to the war.
On the surface of it all - one might wonder, "Will this last"?
I'm so proud of them 45 years later to say a resounding YES!!!
We live in a day & age, a culture, where we don't see many 45th Wedding anniversaries in the paper. We see tons of engagement & wedding announcements - but not many anniversaries.
These two people are beating the odds! In fact, I did a little digging... less than 5% of marriages make it this long today!
So what's their secret? I asked them.
Here's what they said:
- Commitment - to their marriage & each other
My Mom said this...
"We had to just stop & think at the times we wanted to throw in the towel and call it quits... Do we want to be in this shape (divorced, separated) 50 years from now? Do we care more about ourselves or our kids and our witness... 50 years from now. We've learned to count the cost."
Here are some of the things they have faced over the past 45 years:
- Serious car accident - Mom almost died
- Scare with Breast Cancer
- Financial woes
- Dad - Laid off from work
- Mom - Depression
- Several illnesses & surgeries
- Mom's Mom remarrying
- Prescription drug addiction (Dad's Mom)
- Death of parents
- Birth of 2 daughters
- Death of granddaughter (Anna)
- Daughter's divorce
- Being a banker in this economy
These are the verses that continues to get them through the tough days:
John 15:16 (NASB)
"You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask of the Father in My name, He may give to you."
Jeremiah 29:11 (ESV)
"'For I know the plans that I have for you', declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope."
She said when she thought about a future without her husband, she figured that didn't sound too hopeful - so they decided to stick it out together!
I asked her what were some "life changing blessings" in their marriage.
She said two main things - looking back:
- In 1970 the Holy Spirit led them to join Denman Avenue Baptist Church. (they are still members of this church 40 years later!)
- Knowing their 4 beautiful grandchildren are being raised to love the Lord.
What are some of the things that I have learned from them in watching this marriage?
- They put the Lord first - when they say they're going to pray about it, they really do!
- They go to church together - they don't miss!
- My Dad is the leader of their marriage
- My Mom submits to my Dad's leadership
- They still do sweet things for one another
- They still date!
- They respect each other's individuality
- They support each other's hobbies
- They still surprise each other
- They don't expose each other's weaknesses - rather they help to fill in the gaps!
Mom & Dad you've done good!
I'm super proud of you!
You're an excellent
example to us all!