When you hear this number what comes to mind?
- The age Jesus was when he completed His earthly mission?
- The RPM’s of classic vinyl records? Actually, 33 1/3, but it’s close.
- A not-so-good pair in the game of poker?
- What a husband of a wife who are pregnant with triplets sees – double vision! (We actually have dear friends who have been married only 18 months who are having triplets in October. There was no in vitro – a completely natural and unexpected miracle! And yes, the daddy is seeing double at this point or should I say – triple?)
- The number of flavors Bresler’s Ice Cream Shops offers their customers.
All the above are true. But today this number means something completely different to us; Today marks the 33rd anniversary of our first date! I was 18 and Tom was 23. You can read about it under Our Story. Here is a picture of us while we were dating. I know – we were so young!!
Here are 33 things we have learned in our 33 years together:
- We are compatible, but completely different.
- Tom loves to deep clean, I tend to make do.
- I am an optimist, Tom is a realist. But a realist to an optimist sounds like a pessimist. 🙂
- We both agreed from day one that divorce would never be an option. By God’s grace the idea has never come up.
- Honesty is required for intimacy to grow.
- Being in love is a decision, not a feeling.
- Difficult times, even when they’re caused by one or both partners, are some of the best times of growth together.
- Sin habits formed before marriage won’t go away once you’re married.
- It is possible to make an idol out of your relationship. Guard the supremacy Christ rightfully holds in your marriage. It is all for HIM.
- There should be no secrets – ever! Unless it’s a surprise to bless your spouse.
- Give away what you’ve so richly received. Pour your life into other couples.
- Keep romance alive by planning regular date nights, whether in the home or going out together.
- Husbands should bear the responsibility of making sure date nights are a regular occurrence.
- Wives should also take initiative when it comes to romancing your husband. This is a two way street.
- Each must give 100% to the marriage. Meeting halfway will produce only half of the results desired.
- Your children are secondary to your relationship. They will grow up and move away. Your marriage will last a lifetime.
- Think of your spouse as more important than yourself. If they are too tired to _________(you fill in the blank), give them the space needed.
- Pray daily for your spouse and what concerns them. Tell them you’re praying for them.
- Find more ways to encourage, than to criticize.
- Go after the issues in your own heart that need to change. As you do your spouse will benefit and maybe will do the same. You can’t change your spouse, only your own heart. Leave that to God.
- Study your spouse – know their likes, dislikes, needs and wants.
- Be the best friend you can be to your spouse.
- Never tell your friends something you haven’t told your spouse first.
- Never talk bad about your spouse to others whether in their presence or behind their backs. Be mature and discuss what bothers you with them.
- Be faithful members of the local church. Find an area to serve in together.
- Be loyal to your relationship. Loyalty builds trust and trust builds intimacy.
- Be grateful and express your gratefulness regularly.
- Compliment your spouse to others.
- Compliment your spouse in private.
- Celebrate milestones and annual anniversaries.
- Pray together for each other and for others. When you pray your spouse hears what is on your heart in a way no other communication reveals.
- Remember often your beginning and how far you’ve come in the years since.
- Thank God for His continued mercy and grace in your relationship. A lasting marriage is a gift from God, but one we must also work together to maintain.
Marriage is like whitewater rafting it takes all on board to bring the raft safely through the rapids of life. Some can even be life threatening, but making it through not only provides great joy – but an amazing story to tell of God’s faithfulness!
That is really nice article!
Because of my age is coming close to 33, I have paid more attention to this number.
Thank your for the article, I have got some ideas for future investigation! 😉
Thanks for the reply – Happy soon-to-be 33! 🙂
Congratulations~ isn’t it fun to look back and realize how young we all were?
wow have a wonderful weekend.
Thank you, Sharon! We will!! 😉
# 9 It is possible to make an idol out of your relationship. Guard the supremacy Christ rightfully holds in your marriage. It is all for HIM.
This was almost our downfall early in our marriage. We were very close to divorce when we found ourselves sitting in a room in Georgia listening to a teaching by Dave Harvey titled “When Sinners Say I Do”. The thought suddenly hit Paula – she had been worshiping a perfect marriage and since I was a sinner, it was never going to happen. God showed her that her worship of the “perfect marriage” was an Idol, and that was the turning point (lots of counseling was needed, but #9 was the key – #9 It is possible to make an idol out of your relationship. Guard the supremacy Christ rightfully holds in your marriage. It is all for HIM.
Tom and Debi,
A very happy anniversary! Thanks so much for sharing what you have learned over the years – both in this post and so many others. You are a very fine wine indeed!
Thanks, Paul! We have certainly “mellowed with age.” LOL! Hey, we are wondering if you and Lori are still planning a trip to Florida? If so, let’s try and get together. We love to hear your story and share time together!