My parents would joke, saying that I would only date Jesus – that whoever I brought home must be good and they would approve, because my standards were so high.
If only we had all known. I would scoff, and at the same time, pray for that man who would be my future husband. (He needed it!) Please know my parents were being nice, and when they met Tyler, they honestly did approve.
Truly, though, if we had only known. They might not have joked. I definitely would not have scoffed.
My husband, Tyler, from day one of our marriage, through the wonderful six years that we now celebrate together, has been like Christ to me. It is not only because of his steady-as-a-rock, masculine, gentle, loving personality and demeanor, but because he has surrendered himself to the One who created him with this personality.
The Holy Spirit of Christ fills and empowers my husband to be like and to love me like Christ loves me. The powerful scripture passage written by Paul in Ephesians is not just poetry on a page in our marriage.
“Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her bythe washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same wayhusbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself,” Ephesians 5: 25-33
It has taken on remarkable reality throughout the last six years. And as my precious man of God clings to the cross, we can both rest assured that the Holy Spirit will lead, guide, and be our rearguard as we go into the next many, many more years together.
As we recessed down the wedding aisle of grass, our sweet friend, Jeff, played his guitar and everyone sang the Doxology.
“And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, afragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” Ephesians 5:2
Our first year – we did it! Happily! And we praised God from whom all blessings flow.
Our second year – we had gone through some real life together – and we had graduated college! And we praised God from whom all blessings flow.
Our third year – we wondered if and when the Lord would give us a child, children. And we committed our way to the Lord, knowing that as we did, He would act. On His behalf, for His righteousness, for His glory! – and we praised God from whom all blessings flow.
Our fourth year – we ate at Winston’s, slowly, because every day I was overcome with the child-life growing in me. (I would get sick, so I ate that delicious steak so slowly because I did NOT want it to come up! And of course, I can always keep down chocolate cake, so I enjoyed their molten lava yumminess afterwards, with a rich glass of cold milk.) I was through the first trimester! – and we praised God from whom all blessings flow.
Our fifth year – we couldn’t believe where we were – a five month old at home with a family member-babysitter! – and we praised God from whom all blessings flow.
Our sixth year – we are once again overcome with child-life, a second boy growing inside of me, for about five months now! – and we praise God from whom all blessings flow.
And I am learning day in and day out throughout these past years what it means to call the Lord, Lord, and what it means to call my husband, lord.
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.” Ephesians 5:22-24
“…as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.” 1 Peter 3:6
Certainly I owe all to Jesus. Certainly I am Tyler’s helpmeet, I take the role of a servant to my family. My body is not my own, my heart is not my own, my head, and my hours, and my everything is Christ’s. Is Tyler’s. Is for Leland and for Grafton. Is for the glory of our great God. And I praise God from whom all blessings flow.
Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory,
for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!