16 years ago today, I was a young know-it-all bride. Sure of myself. Sure of my man and his love for me. Sure that life would take us wherever we wanted to go.
Older and wiser, I've realized that I don't know it all, and that even the surest human love can be shaken and doubted. Life hasn't always taken us where we'd expected to go. I've also learned that marriage is a lot more difficult than I ever dreamed it would be.
Still, I choose us.
Through times of plenty and times of want...I choose us.
Through the agony of infertility and the despair of a miscarriage...I choose us.
Through the birth of our beautiful daughter and the trenches of parenthood...I choose us.
Through family drama and heartache...I choose us.
Through a cancer diagnosis and the death of loved ones...I choose us.
Through surgeries and illnesses...I choose us.
Through sin, confession, and forgiveness...I choose us.
Sitting in our favorite restaurant, the bleachers, a roller coaster, or on the church pew...I choose us.
Getting lost in Florida, Tennessee, Maryland, or anywhere in between...I choose us.
From the heights of the Eiffel Tower to the depths of the caves in Champagne, on the streets of New York, Boston and Annapolis...I choose us.
Atop a mountain of laundry and under a stack of bills...I choose us.
Whether in a tiny apartment or in the home we've built together...I choose us.
During mission trips to Texas, Mississippi, New Jersey, and soon to be Peru...I choose us.
Even though it's not how I pictured it 16 years ago...I still choose us.
Our wedding invitation began with the words of Shakespeare: My love hath in't a bond, whereof the world takes note. That day, I was certain that our bond would be noteworthy...that our marriage would be a testimony to perfect love. And it is. Not mine. Not R's. God's.
A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart. - Ecclesiastes 4:12 (NASB)