My mom has always said that my smile is contagious. I never really give it much thought because I spend more time without a smile than I do with one. I mean smiling is okay, people seem to like them, but I’m a pretty serious, driven, self-critical, emotionally intense firstborn. Ever read The Firstborn Advantage by Keven Leman? You get me, then. Smiling isn’t my first priority in life. Tasks? Gettin’ stuff done? Now, that’s love language material. True, deep happiness.
But as it happened some years ago, out of the clear blue sky, the good LORD put a pretty atypical-for-me, fella in my path. I wasn’t looking for him and I feel very sure he wasn’t looking for me. We come from two very different worlds in a lot of ways. But, his quick wit was most certainly intriguing. I had never met anyone with such off-the-cuff comebacks so smoothly woven into the flow of conversation. He was interesting. He made me laugh, and. . . well, I needed to laugh. Perfect combination. We became friends. As fate would have it, we ended up at the same apartment complex. Eventually, we started dating but that was after I’d arranged dates for him and other girlfriends.
Today, nearly 30 years later, we discuss often what we’d like to impart to our adult children and the next generation – some how to stay married for the long haul wisdom. Without skipping a beat, Phillip will say: “Marry Your Best Friend!” It’s sort of his marriage catchphrase. Without hesitation, I always add: “We think neither deserves the other.” Think about it. When we live out married life with a heart of humility (“I don’t deserve you, it’s only by God’s amazing grace that I get the privilege to be married to you”) it changes the way you do life together. Still today, I am completely humbled to know that God, in His perfect sovereignty, saw fit to give me a gift that I didn’t even know I needed, and definitely didn’t want. But, heeeeerre we are! Going strong.
And my heart is smiling all the way!
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. James 1:17