Last week my husband and I attended a wedding of a dear friend. She and her husband were getting married in their 30s, after both having their careers in line, their passions in place, and their identities established.
But one thing we noticed at this wedding that was unlike all the weddings we had attended of friends in their late teens or early twenties was this…their vows. When it came time to exchange vows, they each pulled out a page of paper and began reciting their commitment to one another. Never have I hear vows that were so genuine, and so realistic.
They weren’t filled with the typical romantic phrases of undying passion and relentless affection- but rather, they were filled with truth. Phrases like:
I choose to trust you with my deepest insecurities…
I vow to love you with words because that is the love language that you speak, even though I know that’s not my strength…
I promise to communicate my deepest feelings and let you into my heart even when it’s difficult…
They were words that reflected the heart of marriage, and a healthy marriage at that- two flawed human beings, very much aware of their strengths and weaknesses, choosing to enter into a forever covenant with one another- no matter what their journey would bring.
That reflects the heart of true marriage because within that covenant is a reflection of our love to a God who is desperately in love with us. Within this covenant we are not promises undying romance, or everlasting affection.
No, but we are promised to be loved unconditionally, and we commit to loving in return. A love that requires daily action, constant sacrifice, and moment by moment commitment. A love that requires us to choose others and forsake self each and every single day.
My husband John and I were challenged by these vows, and six years one month and one day into our marriage, last Wednesday evening we decided to sit down and re-write our own vows from the perspective of what we know now, who we are today, and what we know of one another.
We have definitely experienced the highs and lows of marriage, but one thing we is for sure- we love each other more deeply now, because we know each other more deeply. This time, our vows were rooted in what we know 6 years later, and believe it or not, sitting face to face on our worn out couch in the middle of our living room- with no eyes watching but us…
They’re even more meaningful than they were on the day of our marriage June 9th, 2007. They were filled with tears, confessions, forgiveness, commitment, reflections, hopes and dreams, but most of all- they were filled with deep, deep, love.
I love you, John- today, more than I ever imagined I could.
My challenge to all my married friends and to all my readers, is to take the time and reflect on the past years of your marriage, with what you know now and who you know your spouse to be– What would your vows say, today?
**Rewrite your vows, set a time, and share with one another. **