My wife is such a nice person. She talks to everybody. This morning she saw a lady by herself in the resort where we are staying. “I wonder what her story is?” Roxanne said.
We traveled about 40 miles north to hike the trail at Temperance River State Park. Before we arrived, we stopped at the Koho Cafe for lunch. Just as we pulled in to the Cafe parking lot, that same lady pulled in. Immediately Roxanne and this lady began to talk and to ask about each other. “You've been married 33 years?” said the lady. “Well, congratulations.”
“Why congratulations?” I thought to myself.
Of course I didn't say it. I don't talk to strangers, if I can help it. And obviously, that's where Roxanne and I are very different. In fact there are a number of ways in which we are different. She is hopeful, and optimistic. I'm a realist. She's a planner. I tend to be impulsive, especially if it's a good deal. She's so observant. As we were walking back from our hike today she pointed to an animal track, “That track wasn't there when we walked in.” Amazingly, I hadn't noticed.
We do have similarities. We both like to hike, and ski and bicycle. We both are easily amused. We like to work on projects together. We both love the Lord and are very grateful to Him. The favorite time of day for both of us is early in the morning with a cup of strong coffee. She prays and reads the Scriptures, I read the Scriptures and my commentaries.
So, you ask (or maybe you don't) what is our secret for this long marriage of ours?
Are you ready?
Love is patient, and kind...it does not seek it's own way.
More than anything, I do love my wife. I'm not a fool. I know I've got a good deal. Any time I get a little cranky or feel a bit lazy, I think, “You toad, Rodgers. This girl likes you. Who else is going to like you? Settle down and just do it.” Then always Roxanne says to me, “Thank you.”
Our kids all came home last week to celebrate my 60th birthday. After Roxanne and I had gone to bed, they stayed up and played charades. Their topic was Dad. They had a long list of Dad things. After the game was over, my daughter-in-law said to my son, “Your dad is sort of quirky, isn't he?” Roxanne's not quirky. Though sometimes our children wonder about her sense of humor in the way she relates to her grandchildren.
After we finished our lunch, Roxanne suggested we get dessert. Now this is something we totally have in common. We never do dessert, especially at a restaurant. “Not interested,” I said.
“This place is known for it's desserts,” she said. “Would you at least eat a bite?”
“No,” I said. “But get what you want.”
To my surprise, she did. She went up to the cafe counter to ask for dessert and there was that lady again. The lady said to her, “For your anniversary, I wanted to buy you both dessert. The waitress and I were just discussing what type of dessert you and your husband would like. We both agreed on carrot cake, but we couldn't figure out the other dessert.”
“That is so nice,” said my wife. “We had carrot cake for our wedding cake.”
The cake was brought to our table. We each ate about two bites of it. We don't do desserts, but it was a nice little coincidence, a nice little encouragement from our Lord.
So, what's really our marriage secret? The Lord. He's been awfully good to us for about 33 years now.