Congratulations

I’ve been playing out this scene in my mind. Many of you might know it. You walk into your favorite restaurant — or maybe an all-too-expensive restaurant with strange menu items you’ve never heard of — and your hand is intertwined with that of the one you love. Your hearts are even more intertwined and your faces beam. You barely make it to the maître d’ before you blurt out, “It’s our anniversary!” just as if the entire world should care. The response is polite, though usually lacking the same enthusiasm, but it’s enough. There’s enough thrill in your present company that just saying it out loud is all the excitement you need. This person married me, you think in bewilderment and utter ecstasy.

It doesn’t matter what happens from there. They might give you free dessert or a goofy song. But the person across the table is all that matters. The time goes too quickly, and the conversation is perfect, even though it’s about laundry day and the big project and the kids who you rightfully ran away from for the night. It ends too quickly, just the way everything does. But it’s wonderful.

I have two questions after that – one for me and one for you.

What happens tomorrow when I say “It’s my anniversary” and there’s no wife by my side?

“Congratulations? Sir?”

Sure! Why not, right? I still got married. And marriage is a beautiful thing God designed. Regardless of the fact that it’s in my past, I can celebrate it and the growth it has brought me.

Your turn. How do you celebrate your anniversary? Are you making your marriage something to cherish? And, married or not, are you making your relationship with God something to cherish? How do you celebrate that? (I ask that of myself, as well.)

13 thoughts on “Congratulations”

  1. I have no doubt that your bride IS at your side, loving you and holding your hand on this very special day…it IS a day of celebration..a celebration of your love for each other and the gift of your children to each other….Stepha​nie lives in your heart, Brad…and she always will…forever.​ I truly believe that. I choose to think that she is actually with you now more than ever…always at your side…

  2. Beautiful musings, I feel the same joy on my Anniversaries as you described. I been blessed with 20+ years. But believe very stronglly that your friend Mimi above my comment is correct. No matter what God has planned for your future, Stephanie lives on always in your heart and with the two greatest gifts she could ever had shared with you…you wonderful loveing children. Congratulations​ and God Bless.

  3. I have no doubt that your bride IS at your side, loving you and holding your hand on this very special day…it IS a day of celebration..a celebration of your love for each other and the gift of your children to each other….Stephanie lives in your heart, Brad…and she always will…forever. I truly believe that. I choose to think that she is actually with you now more than ever…always at your side…

  4. This is AMAZING GRACE! Astounding, comforting, beautiful, stirring, inspiring, God-breathed, hope-filled, heart-stopping, amazing GRACE!

  5. Beautiful musings, I feel the same joy on my Anniversaries as you described. I been blessed with 20+ years. But believe very stronglly that your friend Mimi above my comment is correct. No matter what God has planned for your future, Stephanie lives on always in your heart and with the two greatest gifts she could ever had shared with you…you wonderful loveing children. Congratulations and God Bless.

  6. Brad, this is beautiful & true & so right on. You two enjoyed more in your five years than most enjoy in their entire marriages. Praise Jesus for such a happy and wonderful marriage!

  7. Brad, You were and still are very lucky to have had someone love you. I believe that even after are loved ones are gone we still have all of their love in our hearts. Nothing can ever take that away.
    I had an accident in Dec 09 that took my way of life away from me Reading about your family has helped me realize that life is very precious and no matter what happens to live each day to the fullest. You are truly an inspiration.

  8. That is one date I have struggled to know how to celebrate as well. Joel’s mom reminds me each year that even though I won’t celebrate any more anniversaries with Joel, it is the day I became a part of their family. My in-laws are such a blessing to me! If only they weren’t so far away.

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