54

wedding Beatriz Perez Moya via Unsplash.com

Today marks the 54th anniversary of a couple dear to me. In their honor, I’m writing about marriage today. But if you’re single, think of it as tips for a deep and dear friendship.

Our pastor, Ky, said this about marriage: “The essence of marriage is for 2 people to live out gospel grace with each other.”

What does that look like in a practical sense?

  • I think it involves spending time together. For Steve and me that includes syncing our schedules as much as possible, and being very careful about our use of “screens.” Taking regular walks together enhances our communication, as does just sitting down to the table for a meal or a game.
  • It includes making prayer a priority—together and out loud—even if it’s only for a couple of minutes a day.
  • And it means each putting the other first.

This excerpt from an earlier blog based on the writings of Sheldon Van Auken covers a great deal of marital grace. His lesson is two-pronged:

  • Love others far beyond yourself.
  • Do your best to trust the people you love.

Sheldon and his wife, Davy, made this pledge to one another: “Whatever one of us asked the other to do – it was assumed the asker would weigh all the consequences – the other would do. Thus one might wake the other in the night and ask for a cup of water; and the other would peacefully (and sleepily) fetch it. We, in fact, defined courtesy as ‘a cup of water in the night’. And we considered it a very great courtesy to ask for the cup as well as to fetch it.”

Imagine what would happen if all requests between spouses (and, for that matter, friends) were handled in this manner! Were love and trust to prevail, there would be little room for discord. I try to ask of Steve only that which I have already weighed and considered best for him to do. And while I sometimes fail, it is my intention never to question his requests of me. In a perfect world, where the “cup of water in the night” principle reigns, each request one of us makes of the other is granted if at all possible. Isn’t it what our Lord would do and would have us to do?

Grace. It’s a tricky thing. May we give and receive more and more of it as the years go by! (If you have a tip to share regarding grace in marriage, please send it on!)

And for a bit more of Sheldon Van Auken’s wisdom, here’s another archived blog:https://smoothersailing.wordpress.com/2015/04/29/scratch-and-dent/

3 thoughts on “54

  1. Pingback: From Friendship to Family | Smoother Sailing

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