the weblog of Alan Knox

19 Years

Posted by on Jan 14, 2008 in discipleship | 6 comments

As of Monday, January 14, 2008, Margaret and I have been married nineteen years. I realize that this fact may cause you – my readers – to react in disbelief that 1) I am old enough to be married for 19 years, and 2) that someone would be willing to put up with me for 19 years. But, I assure you that it is true. We have been married for 19 years.

Margaret is an amazing woman and an amazing wife. I’m not saying that she’s perfect. We both learned long ago that neither one of us is perfect, and therefore, our marriage is not perfect. But, even though she is not perfect, she still amazes me. Besides taking care of our home and children – which includes homeschooling our children – she also takes care of me. The main benefit for me is that Margaret knows when we need time alone together. While I can get bogged down in work and school and forget about the world, Margaret knows when we both need to stop and take time to treasure one another.

She also cares about other people. She has taught me tremendously in this area. I have seen her give and give of herself to the point of exhaustion because someone else is in need or hurting or lonely or discouraged. Many of the things that I write on this blog concerning loving others comes from watching the way that Margaret loves other people. She loves them with her actions, not just her words.

Honestly, I do not know how we’ve made it for nineteen years. There is no good explanation for our success in marriage except for the grace of God. In fact, as we’ve been talking about marriage recently, we’ve realized how important grace, forgiveness, and friendship are for our marriage. When we were going through pre-marriage counselling, we spent most of our time talking about communication and planning. But, we were never told that, at some point, even the best communicators and planners fail. We’ve learned how to offer one another grace and forgiveness when we fail – and that has happened often.

But, how did we survive during those early years, when we did not understand love, grace, or forgiveness? It had to be God’s grace. We survived living in Atlanta (for me to obtain a master’s degree) during our first year of marriage without knowing anyone. We survived having a child in our fifth year of marriage. We survived building a house (what we thought would be our dream home) in our sixth year of marriage. We survived the birth of another child in our eighth year of marriage. We survived moving back to Atlanta and three hours away from all of our family and friends – and our “dream home” – in our tenth year of marriage. We survived moving seven hours away to North Carolina for seminary – and all that entails – during our thirteenth year of marriage. And, now, five years later, we remain in North Carolina and I still have at least two more years of school ahead of me – and we’re still surviving. Why? God’s grace. There is no other explanation.

So, over the last few months, as friends have been going through difficulties in their marriages, we have been thinking about our marriage. As we have been asked to offer pre-marital counselling to a young couple, we have been thinking about our marriage. As we have approached our nineteenth wedding anniversary, we have been thinking about our marriage. And, since we’ve been thinking about our marriage, I thought that I would put some of those thoughts down on (virtual) paper.

We love each other – and now we think we know a little bit about love – at least we know more than we did 19 years ago. We also like one another – which is saying alot. We do not expect one another to be perfect, and we offer grace and forgiveness when the other person fails. We trust that the other person has our best interest at heart.

And, we rely on God’s grace.

Last Friday, we celebrated our anniversary by going to a new, local restaurant – just the two of us. Tonight – Monday evening – we’ll celebrate with our children with our annual anniversary dinner – steak and sweet potatoes on our china – Jeremy and Miranda will help prepare the meal and set the table. And, we’ll start our twentieth year. I’m looking forward to this year, and to every year to come.

Happy 19th Anniversary, Margaret. I love you! Here’s something just for you – I’m sorry that I didn’t write it.

I could stay awake just to hear you breathing
Watch you smile while you are sleeping
Far away and dreaming
I could spend my life in this sweet surrender
I could stay lost in this moment forever
Well, every moment spent with you
Is a moment I treasure

I don’t wanna close my eyes
I don’t wanna fall asleep
‘Cause I’d miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing
‘Cause even when I dream of you
The sweetest dream will never do
I’d still miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing

Lying close to you
Feeling your heart beating
And I’m wondering what you’re dreaming
Wondering if it’s me you’re seeing
Then I kiss your eyes and thank God we’re together
And I just wanna stay with you
In this moment forever, forever and ever

I don’t wanna close my eyes
I don’t wanna fall asleep
‘Cause I’d miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing
‘Cause even when I dream of you
The sweetest dream will never do
I’d still miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing

I don’t wanna miss one smile
I don’t wanna miss one kiss
Well, I just wanna be with you
Right here with you, just like this
I just wanna hold you close
Feel your heart so close to mine
And stay here in this moment
For all the rest of time

Don’t wanna close my eyes
Don’t wanna fall asleep
‘Cause I’d miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing
‘Cause even when I dream of you
The sweetest dream will never do
‘Cause I’d still miss you, babe
And I don’t wanna miss a thing


6 Comments

Comments are closed. If you would like to discuss this post, send an email to alan [at] alanknox [dot] net.

  1. 1-14-2008

    Alan & Margaret,

    Happy anniversary!

    Sincerely,

    Jeff

  2. 1-14-2008

    Happy Anniversary! I agree with you, Margaret does show love beyond what some others do. Thank you both for being such an example for the rest of us.

  3. 1-14-2008

    I would like to come up with something funny and witty to say here, but I can’t, so I’ll just say…

    Happy Anniversary!! I love that song that you quoted at the end.

    We trust that the other person has our best interest at heart.

    This is such a valuable thought. That basic “benefit of the doubt” goes miles and miles in a marriage relationship.

    The other thing that I often express in talking about marriage is that it is vitally important that we constantly remember that God has made us one. There is nothing that can come in between Christy and myself. Any problems or difficulties are faced together, as one. We don’t have to fight with each other, but rather, together we fight against anything that would seek to pull us apart.

    Hope that makes sense.

    Happy anniversary, my dear friends.

  4. 1-14-2008

    Alan,

    To reach the nineteen year mark is, truly, a great blessing from our loving Father. It thrills me to see that you recognize that it is by His grace that you and Margaret have done so.

    I trust that you will look to that same grace for the next nineteen, and the nineteen after that.

    May the Lord bless you and yours.

    Happy Anniversary from Down Under!

  5. 1-14-2008

    awesome Alan! May the Lord bless you with many more years of happy marriage!!!

  6. 1-15-2008

    Alan & Margaret,
    What a foundation for the next 19 years! Happy anniversary.
    Kat