Proverbs 18:22 states “The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord.” I can say that I have truly found a treasure. I think from the first time I really met her I was in love. I remember what our pre-marriage counselor, Stephan Tchividjian, said, “Your spouse is like God’s present to you that is unlike any other present. It’s perfect in every way, no thought of a return, not the wrong size or color; it’s perfect and the best present ever.”
From that analogy I have always looked at my wife as the perfect gift from God. I thank God almost daily for my new life with my wife. Marcie is truly an amazing wife. Going on 17 years, she has been my encourager when I have been down, my strength when I was weak, cheerleader when the battle was tough, the teacher of our kids (yes, she home schools all four of our kids), my best friend, traveling companion, business partner and my loving beautiful wife.
We have had a saying since we started dating, before we knew the Lord: “I love you today.” It started off funny, meaning “We’ll see about tomorrow.” Now it’s a reminder to each other that every day I love you no matter what goes on; we have God’s deep unfailing love that bonds us together.
Sure, we have a marriage like a lot of others, full of ups and downs, trials and tribulations, fun and not so fun times. But the fact remains we love each other and have recognized that for our whole marriage.
One thing that helps us in our marriage is getting tools such as maintenance from classes, counseling and seminars. Why would you work on and maintain just about everything else in your life and not your marriage? I think some couples spend more time making sure their car works well or their yard is looking good than on their marriage.
I have always enjoyed and encouraged others to participate in marriage maintenance. Maybe it’s in my practical nature. From the very beginning we went to one of our pastors to get counseling and our newlywed friends were concerned about whether everything was okay. “Uh … yea,” we’d reply. “We just want it better.” We were new at marriage and wanted ours to be the best it could. Sadly a few of those newlyweds we hung around with 16 years ago are no longer married.
Marriage is tough. Think about it. It’s two people living extremely close day after day, year after year – with kids. Throw in work, finances, stress, life, extended family and it’s a breeding ground for emotional uprising. With all that I wouldn’t trade any of it for anything.
You can look at it as tough, or you can look at it as training. I recently received a set of cards that said, “A skillful sailor is not made by smooth seas.” There is so much truth in that.
Marcie and I have always had a heart to be involved with married couples’ ministry. This year and last we went through and helped lead a class called Love After Marriage that opened our eyes to godly tools that changed our lives forever. I wish we would have taken that class 17 years ago. Getting equipped with the right tools and understanding how to communicate in marriage can make a world of difference.
Recently we both are involved with bringing a really cool and practical marriage ministry to South Florida called Live the Life. We’ve learned that Live the life explains things in ways you may not have heard and makes sense. Starting on our anniversary this year, Live the Life is kicking off a series of one-day workshops that are designed to teach parents how to talk to their teens about love, life and leadership. Wow, what a concept! There’s an app [class] for that. Every tool you and your spouse can learn together to do this thing called marriage better is a good thing. You shouldn’t even ask, “Should we?” The answer is yes.
I challenge every husband reading this to surprise your wife and sign up for a marriage workshop, class or weekend. Take the initiative. You will be blown away with the response. I challenge each wife to not worry about what he will think or how he will respond if you sign up for a marriage class; he will thank you for it after.
Going back to Proverbs 18:22, it’s true. Some of us need a wife just to survive in life like me. I have truly found a treasure like no other. I am the luckiest pirate ever.
Grif Blackstone is the publisher of Good News, the largest Christian newspaper in Florida and president of Blackstone Media Group, a full service web design and marketing company. Grif has helped hundreds of businesses build an effective brand identity to help them communicate who they are to their target market.Email [email protected] or