Today, there will be no Frontline preparation. There will be no answering e-mails. Heck, there won’t even be my hourly check of Drudge Report.
Today my bride and I celebrate sixteen years of marriage. I’m one of those lucky rascals that didn’t marry a girlfriend…I married a best friend. Merriem and I just barely squeaked into the category of high school sweethearts. We met halfway through our senior years when she showed up at my high school for a basketball game. One look at the girl with the big bangs sitting on the bleachers, and I was hooked. I knew then that there would never be anybody else.
Whenever I do premarital counseling, I like to shock the couple by telling them they’re about to be married by a guy who started dating at 17, was engaged at 18, and married at 19. Yes, we were babies. Yes, there were people who questioned our sanity (there were times we questioned our own sanity). But I knew then as sure as I know now that God had given me the greatest gift of my life apart from salvation. In many ways, Merriem represents God’s unmatchable grace in my life. She is better to me than I deserve, and she endures the insanity that’s called a pastor’s life with kindness and love.
I can’t really say that our marriage is as exciting as it was back on January 16, 1993, because in so many ways, it’s better. We know each other better. We love each other better. We relate to each other better. She’s familiar…she’s safe…and she’s mine.
I love her.
The great thing is, everybody that knows her loves her, too. She lights up a room when she walks in. She has a compassionate heart that would make Mother Theresa look like a puppy-kicker. She makes the Summit’s first-time guests feel like they are a part of the family, and she makes our house a home and loves our kids like nobody’s business. It’s one thing when you think your wife is awesome, but it’s pretty incredible when your friends and family think it, too.
So today, I’m taking the day to celebrate her. To celebrate us. And to celebrate how good God has been to us.
I love you, Babe!