"Man is born to trouble as the sparks fly upward." Job 5:7
Today is my 13th Wedding Anniversary. These have been some tumultuous years. The first few anniversaries were peaceful enough. We had a sort of ritual of taking a picnic lunch to the park where we had been married. We talked about what we thought our life might be like on future anniversaries. Never good at looking into the future, I would never have dreamed what the real thing(s) would look like.
By our 4th Anniversary our first child had arrived. I was headed into a deep bout of postpartum depression. That time would try Eric severely. He stuck with me and showed great love, but our dreams of perfect parenthood lay shredded around us.
By the 6th Anniversary we had had our second child home from the hospital less than 1 week. He had been born 6 weeks early following an extremely complicated pregnancy, and so he had spent 3 weeks in NICU. But he was completely healthy and, in fact, is generally the healthiest member of our family. Nevertheless, that experience left a few more dreams laying in shreds.
I remember our 10th only because it seemed it should have been worthy of a celebration. Instead, we were on opposite sides of the country and our financial situation was a mess. There was no celebration. The dreams we had about financial security lay in shreds around us as we admitted we had created a false illusion. But as we confessed our failings to God He began to work with us to stitch the pieces back together.
I can't remember for sure, but I think that on our 11th year we were on separate continents.
Then came the 12th Anniversary. I cannot imagine a worse scenario. Our marriage had been torn to shreds and I wasn't sure I even wanted to try to stitch the pieces back together. But, believing it was the right thing to do, we took our marriage to God and asked Him to help stitch us together.
So now, here we are at year 13. We are once again on separate continents. My Mom died 3-1/2 weeks ago. And again I see my heart torn apart, laying in pieces around my feet. It is rather a good thing that we are on separate continents because, once again, I do not feel celebratory.
"As for me, I would seek God, and to God would I commit my cause, who does great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number." Job 5:8-9
Through these years God has been faithfully stitching the tattered pieces of our lives back together. I believe that He is going to do marvelous things in my life and in our marriage. I do not know, cannot know, would not want to know, if I have come to the end of my troubles. But I think some day I will look back at my life and see a wonderful patchwork quilt, stitched together by God.