Before I elaborate on my title, let me fill you in on a few facts about me. My first marriage ended abruptly on Nov. 18, 1996 when my first husband died. We had a good marriage, but had many struggles. Our greatest accomplishments and sources of pride were our 3 wonderful children, James, Allen & Amy. For the next 9 years, I was a widow (hate that word) and a single Mom. For most of those 9 years I prayed and asked the Lord to show me what I could do differently as a wife if he chose to send me another husband. I prayed for specific qualitites that I wanted my Prince Charming to have...my list was very specific. I also prayed that the Lord would just drop my Prince into my life, I wasn't looking. And yes, over the years, I reminded the Lord several times that I was still waiting. I had friends praying that the Lord would send someone to me. Some of Amy's little friends prayed that God would send her a daddy. (She was 7 months old when her Daddy died, so she really didn't know anything about Daddy's) Besides praying, I was also reading the Bible about being a wife. In the spring of 2005, I saw a book advertised online named "Created to be His Helpmeet" by Debi Pearl. I felt like I was supposed to order and read the book. Its really hard to explain, but I did. (The book is great, I don't agree with everything Debi says, but alot of it)
Also, during that spring I was corresponding with a dear friend of mine (since I was 3) whose wife had been killed in a car accident. In one of his emails, he asked me what my kids reaction had been when I dated. I told him about my prayer and waiting on the Lord. I had not gone out with anyone. Can ya guess what happened next? My next email was a date invitation! And I said yes! We went to 6 Flags with 6 of our 7 children as chaperones and had a wonderful time. The next day, we went on a long drive and had a serious talk about our future together. We both agreed to pray about it and keep discussing where we thought the Lord was leading us. 2 weeks later, Greg proposed and we were engaged! My friends were thrilled and knew that our prayers had been answered. We were married on Sept. 3, 2005.
Mine and Greg's relationship and marriage is completely different than what I experienced the first time. I know spending almost 9 years of praying and seeking the Lord on marriage was a great benefit to me. And I was 23 when I was married the first time and almost 45 the 2nd time. You do learn from experience that some issues are just not important, you get your priorities in line. Greg and I are best friends. We are each others strongest supporters and encouragers. We love each other and truly enjoy spending time together. We love to do things together...I have gotten up at 4-5 am to go fishing with him, he has walked the aisles of JoAnn's with me looking for fabric, we have walked the streets of El Progresso, Honduras grocery shopping on Mission Trips, we pray together, work in the yard together, share ice cream sundaes, hunt for shells, go to National Parks, plan homeschool lessons, plant the garden, and watch tv. We love to do things together.
I also, relish the fact that I get to stay at home, keep house, cook meals, and homeschool our children. We are growing and learning and bonding as a family together. I like to have everything done by the time he gets home from work, so that we have time together at night. He is gone all day and likes coming home to clean laundry, a somewhat clean home and dinner. I say somewhat clean because we do LIVE at our house, all day long. The beds are made, most of the homeschool stuff put up and we are ready for him to be home. We also discuss decisions, purchases, budgets, & business ventures. I am pretty convinced that I am living in the wrong decade because most of these things are not important to wives and families today. The way we live is reminiscent of how families lived many, many years ago.
But what happened? Why did families change? Did they change for the better? Is keeping up with the Jones' and Smith's the reason families don't do things together?
I really like Proverbs 31. That woman did it all! She kept her home in order, made their clothing, shopped in town, kept the servants (in our case, children) in line, planted a vineyard, etc. Talk about achieving alot during her day!
I know that many folks don't agree with our lifestyle. But its our lives. We are happy and we feel like what we are doing is pleasing to the Lord. Every family is different and they live according to their own convictions.