Saturday, August 13, 2011

Topic Of The Day -- Can Your Marriage Last?

Today, my husband and I celebrate forty years of marriage. Often people are surprised to hear we've been married so long. In today's world long marriages seem to be the exception rather than the rule. I think that's sad.

So, how did Greg and I make it this far?

It wasn't us. It was God. Without Him we wouldn't be together. Thirty-six years ago, we separated and Greg filed for divorce. He told me he didn't love me and never would. Life was awful. I cried a lot and thought I'd never find happiness.

Greg and I were a wreck of a couple, even from the very beginning. The day of our wedding, I walked down the aisle thinking, "If it doesn't work we can always get a divorce." Clearly I had little faith in us.

But God had plans.

Grieving and trying to learn to live on my own, I found Christ. I started praying that God would restore my marriage. Greg, for reasons he didn't understand, would stop by to see me . . . more and more often. Over several months friendship was restored and Greg discovered that he did love me after all. One surprising day he asked me to return to him. I was scared spitless, but knew that being at Greg's side is where I belonged. We were reunited and only two months later, Greg gave his life to Christ. Since that day, we've followed a Christian path together. There have been valleys to walk through and mountains to climb, but we've stuck together.

There is no magic formula. It's Christ. He is at the heart of our relationship. And when we chose one another for the second time we made a commitment to never throw in the towel. The "D" word was not allowed in our home.

Today, I look back over the years and see a long list of things we've done wrong, but so much of our life has been filled with richness and joy. We love each other more today than we did on our wedding day forty years ago. Greg is a good man and I'm so grateful God placed him in my life. And thankful for God's mercy and His greatness.

Every couple struggles--expect it. But don't give up. Instead give yourselves to God. He's in the business of restoration. Believe in Him and know that He can do it.

Grace and peace to you from God.



  1. I read your post with tears in my eyes. I congratulate you and your husband for 40 years of marriage. God can work miracles. I was a failure in my first marriage. After 25 years of marriage he left me for another woman...he claimed she was the love of his life. I was a Christian and he wasn't. The closer I got to God, the more he moved away from our marriage or so it seemed. I couldn't understand why God wouldn't put us back together. One night I heard a message on the radio. I don't remember the Pastor's name but he said, if the unbeliever wanted to leave the marriage, let him/her go. I knew right then what I had to do.

    I have been married 7 1/2 years to my adult sunday school teacher. Has this marriage been easy? No, but God is the center of this one.

    I wish you 40 more years of marriage! God Bless!

  2. Inspiring story, Bonnie, and one that needs to be shared in this day and age. I just read an interview with a recently divorced actress. She said life was too short to have to work at a relationship so she got out and is confident she'll find someone else...for a time.

    How sad, but how glorious the change God can make in a marriage! Happy anniversary!!!!

  3. Dear Judy,

    I grieve as I read your post. I'm so sorry. And I doubt that you are a failure. Sticking with a bad marriage for 25 years takes great strength and courage.

    I've never figured out why some are blessed and others aren't, but I'm so glad that you found a mate who shares your faith. What a blessing that is.

    May the Lord bless you in amazing ways.

  4. Kav, that is sad. No relationship can succeed without putting work into it.

    I pray she'll find the truth and that her life will be full.

    And thank you for the congrats. It means a lot.

    Bless you.

  5. way to go on 40 years! :)

  6. Boy howdy, you sure got that right--CHRIST is the only glue! Randy and I are at 39--but been together for 43 yrs. Gosh, no other couple could be as different as we are, as most people laughingly see immediately--but we love our differences and each other and utilize God's grace and mercy in our lives together all the time. It is soooooooo good! We may wanna bop each other in the noggin' now 'n then--but kissing is soooo much more fun!

  7. Thank you, Jel. It's hard to believe we've been married for forty years -- the time has gone by so quickly. God has been good to us.

  8. Patti, congratulations on your 39 years. Way to go!

    And I love how God puts two people together. He knows what He's doing. When I see couples who are very different from each other I see God's special handling. We need one another to balance our lives. Where one is weak the other is strong and vice versa. It works out so much better that way. : - )

    God bless you.

  9. Beautiful testimony, Bonnie. I love how the Lord does this kind of thing. He is the restorer of dwellings, the builder of walls and hearts, so able to accomplish all that concerns us.

    Missing you this week! Praying for your back and strength as you minister to writers at the conference. You are such a encouragement and will bless many, I know! :)

  10. Miriam, you have such a tender heart for the Lord. I can see it in your words.

    I wish I could say I'm having a wonderful time at the conference, but I'm not there. My mother was supposed to be having open heart surgery this week, so I had to step aside in time to allow my class to step into other classes. As it turned out, Mom's still waiting. Her specialist called in another specialist and we don't yet know what will happen and when. So . . . here I am . . . at home, thinking about my friends and all the fun and praying for the conference. I'm really missing it. I love the OCW Summer Conference.

  11. Just read this post! So sorry you missed it this year. I know you were sorely missed :( Will be praying for you and your mom. It's hard to watch our parents enter that season when the body starts to breakdown. Ah ... don't you just yearn for the time when all will be made new? Three cheers for a glorified body! :) xo

  12. Miriam, my mother's surgery was postponed, but her internist saw her yesterday and he said no time to postpone.

    So I think she's going to have the surgery. She's never been one to give up on anything. But my sister told me that when Mom got the latest news (not good) that she seemed excited about the possibility of going home.

    I wouldn't have expected anything else from her. She's a spectacular human being.