Last Updated on March 12, 2024

I have mentioned to several strangers here lately that my husband and I are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary and are more in love now than ever… I must admit I have been taken aback by their reactions.

With absolute wonder and awe one young lady said, “That’s amazing…” and the look in her eye was what one might get when reading about a farfetched, but much-hoped-for love in a romantic novel.

Another young lady laughed and with a bit of a snide attitude let me know I was part of a dying breed and I was lucky.

I have spent the last 24 hours contemplating what I have been experiencing and I am realizing my declaration of 25 years of marriage brings out something deep inside others.  It stirs their own hopes, disappointments, memories, and longings.

In a world where life hits us hard at every turn we all long for a soft spot with arms that hold, eyes that embrace, and a heart that loves us in spite of ourselves – forever.  God knew Adam needed that. He created Eve and it was very good.

But then there’s that sin thing that entered the garden … and us.

My marriage has been gloriously hard at times. I say gloriously, because if it had not been hard I wouldn’t have sought God to help me make it through the hard. The hard is a mighty tool in the Maker’s hand. The hard has caused me to allow Him to chisel away at the selfish parts of me.

My husband and I have worked through our marriage …  for richer, for poorer, for better, for worse, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others – till death do us part. The struggle has proven our need for a Savior, made us both stronger, woven us together tighter and has allowed God’s glory to shine.

That’s what I want to say to the faces that look at me in wonder and say “25 years – no way?” One of the faces was that of a young woman who had been married for fourteen months and she asked me, “How in the world have you done it?” I replied, “My biggest piece of advice for you is to be completely selfless.” She looked into my eyes with a bit of a blank stare and I noticed an arch appeared in her eyebrow, her head cocked slightly to the side and a look of slight confusion drew across her fresh, unwrinkled, young face.

Oh how I wanted to pour truth into this young woman. Help her understand that marriage is not what the world, and inexperienced friends will whisper in her ear. It is not her opportunity to “fix” her husband and his many faults, but to love her husband unconditionally, and allow God, through that process, to reveal her own need for repair. To fully embrace loving her husband with wild abandon, to share daily life deeply with one another, while remaining totally committed, to remember their vows and hold fast to them.

We were not ready for that conversation yet … maybe God will provide opportunity for that in the future.

But you, friend, need to hear that truth.



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  1. Anonymous says:

    I think it is very important for people with long term successful marriages that are based and maintained on biblical principles to keep speaking to the younger generation about the up and downs of marriage. I am 27, have been married for 5 years and have 3 small children. My Husband and I went through a really nasty separation this summer and I was appalled at the lack of good advice I received from people, even people that I love and respect. I can't tell you how many times I heard people tell me "I deserve to be happy." I feel like society has ingrained in our minds that it is our spouses job to make us happy and if we are not, then we might as well move on to someone that we can be happy with. I stopped listening to everyone around me and prayed nonstop for weeks. I was told by my Pastor to see my husband through "Jesus' eyes" and forgive, and received some really great e-mentoring from this website. I gave him my forgiveness, respect, and love unconditionally. It was really hard because I was angry at first. I was treating him in a way that he "didn't deserve," and I faced a lot of criticism from "good christian people" all around me. Three months later, my husband and I are both very different people. He has opened his heart to me in a way I never knew was possible, and I love him more than ever. I have learned what it feels like to truly depend on God and trust that he will not forsake me. We begged God to save our marriage, and he did that and SO much more. I think there needs to be more honesty about the real struggles of christian marriages, and I love that you have brought that up in this article!

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your "truth" experience with us and I am so blessed by your words and grateful for you and your dependence on God! I sometimes am given "grief" for some of the real life I share, but my goodness it's all true and God uses the ugliness in our lives to draw us closer to Him and pound the self out of us. Unconditional love is something the world does not get…I am blessed to know that you do!!! May you have a wonderful day and thank you for your encouragement! And…marriage does get sweeter and sweeter with time – keep loving each other! Big Hug!!!

  2. Yes, marriage is hard, but being selfless is harder. Trying to live a selfless life definitely impacts the way I think and act. When all I can think about is me, then things usually start to fall apart until I get a Godly perspective again.

  3. Several years ago as my husband and I traveled for our 25th to AZ many would ask what brought us to visit. We had very similiar reactions when we said we were celebrating 25 yrs. We even had a few waitresses ask us how it was even possible giving us an opportunity to share. But often got a blank stare of confusion. Those of us with long, strong, spiritually healthy marriages need to speak truth, real life truth, Gods truth into the hearts of younger women. They need to know they can live happily ever after and be married!
    Thank you dear one for sharing!