Going along with our focus from yesterday, I, (Tom), wanted a turn to write a letter to myself when we were first married from the vantage point of today, 34 years later.
I hear congratulations are in order. You say you’ve found the woman of your dreams–the one who’s perfect for you, but little do you know just how precious a gift you’ve been given. You see it’s hard to imagine that you can love her more than you do right now, but the next 34 years will only prove a deeper, more intense, more profound love.
There will be areas in your life, things you have struggled with for years, that won’t just go away because you’re married. Debi will be a instrument in God’s hand to help you change and grow. She will be a joy to you in many ways and will complete and reflect you.
It’s imperative that you be honest with your wife in all things. Let her know the real you. Be vulnerable for the sake of sharing everything–your joys, your dreams, your fears, your failures, your weaknesses and your strengths.
Give and give and give! Be generous. Care for your wife sacrificially. It’s easy to say you would give your life in the case of danger to protect her, but you must be willing to lay down your life unselfishly, daily in the little things that don’t cause you physical harm, but are just as hard to do.
If a decision doesn’t have to be made right away, then wait. There is much wisdom to be discovered as you wait on the Lord to help you make important decisions.
You are a good communicator, at least you are by your standards. But you will soon discover that Debi communicates in an entirely different way from you. You might be tempted to think she’s crazy with all her details, but she isn’t. You will learn from each other how to ask good questions and grow in understanding one another by listening more fully. When you are out of words, she’ll have plenty leftover….hang in there. As Christ loves and cares for His church, so you must love and care for your wife. He alone can teach how this is done. Pray for your marriage, your wife, your children and the Lord will tell the way in which you are to walk.
The road ahead will be marked with difficulty and unexpected trouble, but God is your help and strength. He knows you like no other and loves you more that you realize.
Your children will learn more by watching than they will by listening. Be present for them and for your wife. In other words, be all there. Don’t let the distractions of your to-do list or your I-want list rob you of the present blessing taking place in your daily life. Pay attention and give your family the best you have not what’s leftover.
Purpose to grow spiritually by being committed to the local church. Seek out friends whom you respect and ask them good questions. Learn from them so your own marriage will benefit. This is what life in the kingdom of God is meant to be. Each member gleaning from each other as needs are presented.
“Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth.” – Proverbs 5:18 ESV
Remember this one verse and allow your joy to ever increase and overflow in thanksgiving to God for what He has done. He will be faithful to you even when you aren’t. And He will teach you how to grow stronger as a man, a husband, a father, an employee, and a friend. Enjoy the process–it’s all good!
Tom Walter, age 59
I challenge you to consider what you would say to your newlywed self. If you choose to write such a letter, won’t you share it with us by commenting or linking your blog to this post? Let’s help newlyweds today by sharing with them what we would say to ourselves.