He thrives on change. I seek routine.
He favors the East Coast. I prefer the West.
He is impulsive. I have to plan to be spontaneous.
But we do agree on this: We’re still very much in love.
Forty-eight years ago on this date we said “I do,” and like most starry-eyed twenty-somethings had no inkling what we were really signing up for. More than three decades of pastoral ministry, a serious cancer scare, three daughters, seven grandkids, a bunch of moves, and a too-long pandemic later, we now are smart enough to know how uncertain the future really is. And thankfully, we’ve learned to laugh about (most of the time!) and appreciate how opposite we are.
Ever notice how often opposites do attract? Not just in marriage, but in friendships too. Some of my closest female friends are very different from me. But there’s one I call when I want to laugh. Another I reach out to if I’m discouraged. Still another I call when I need prayer.
I once heard the husband-wife author team of Gordon and Gail MacDonald say that we all need people different from us “to help us hear the full counsel of God.” And when we are going through weary times, I believe, we especially need to hear others speak God’s hope, peace and truth to us.
Author Chris Tiegreen says “one of the greatest things we can do for people in need of God is to be there–to be present, in the context of problems and pain, carrying the counsel and companionship of God wherever we can.”
I love that phrase: “the counsel and companionship of God.” That’s what my wonderful husband has offered me as he helps me see a situation from a different perspective or loves me when I’m not very lovable. It’s what my family and dearest friends continue to offer me in this crazy, messed-up world.
So what do you need today? Someone to be present in your weary life, giving you the counsel and companionship of God? If so, take heart that God will provide as He did for the Apostle Paul:
“But God, who encourages those who are discouraged,
encouraged us by the arrival of Titus.
His presence was a joy…” 2 Corinthians 7:6-7
Or do you need to be the presence in someone’s weary life, tendering God’s love to them?
Jesus explained this to His disciples in John 13:34.
“So I give you a new command:
Love each other deeply and fully.
Remember the ways that I have loved you,
and demonstrate your love for others in those same ways.” (The Voice Bible)
The presence–literally or figuratively–of another human being willing to be a conduit for God’s presence can change everything. I encourage you to pray that your weary heart will receive “the counsel and companionship of God” from someone who cares about you, or that you will offer those two gifts to a weary soul who really needs them.
(And please join me today in thanking God for my 48 years of love with my opposite.)
Be sure to open in your browser to hear the music video “Weary Traveler” by Jordan St. Cyr