Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Gift of Love- 40 Years Worth

I can remember as a child thinking that 40 was old.  It seemed like a lifetime, and to many it is, or may be. 

You can fit a lot of living into 40 years.  A lot of laughter. A lot of tears.  A lot of struggles and fighting and smiling and making up. 

I've only been around for 33 and 11/12... but I can tell you about the last 40 years.

They've included hot rods and small trailers and married housing at Morehead.  They've included one head-strong infant in a brick house with a Care Bear bedroom, driving that baby around at midnight when she just wouldn't give it up and go to sleep, a bundled up little girl in a snowsuit to build snowmen while the dad wore a blue Michelin coat and gave beardy kisses to the delight of that little girl.  They've included stitches when that little girl dropped a pepsi bottle on the concrete and a trip to the doctor when the Daddy decided it might not have been a bad idea to ride a bicycle down Buckhorn Dam  hill.  They've included a totaled car pulled onto Picnic Hill, a mama chasing the car frantically down the hill as her four year old balled up in the driver's side floorboard.

12 years later involved a new baby, a happy, laughing baby, who endured lots of stomping and slamming of doors.  Of a old house made new and a broken leg and sprained ankle and moving...

Years passed and those girls grew up and the family went to ballgames and church.  And ballgames and church.  And ballgames and church.  Mom and Dad working and playing and trips to the beach and Disney World and Tennessee. 

Taking in kids who needed a roof over their head and love in their hearts.  Always love... 40 years of love. Even in the difficulties. Even when it was hard.  Especially then.

And halfway into that marriage, just when the oldest was a headstrong teenager and the youngest was coming into her own, a new baby came into the picture that really completed the family.  Those chubby cheeks and dark brown eyes...

Twenty years later that baby is in college and the oldest has kind of come into her own (although she still has her moments when the fruit of the Spirit doesn't bloom and bud quite as obvious) and the middle baby makes a difference in the lives of everyone she meets and they've got two sons-in-laws and a grandson...

And there is still that love.

Forty years is a lifetime, but I hope it is just the beginning.  Not everyone can say they have been blessed with the gift of this legacy of love, but I can.  Love that says I'm sorry. Love that accepts the apology even when it wasn't spoken.  Love that goes without so that someone else doesn't have to. Love that leans heavily on the Father when they realize they can't do it alone.  Love that keeps loving, that still sees that beautiful girl forty years later, that makes it hard for a guy to live up to the expectations because I've seen how good it can be. 

Noone is perfect, and they don't claim to be, but they can become perfected, complete, and that is what Christ is doing for us each and every day... perfecting, making complete.  Just as we are made complete when we meet that certain someone that is made for us.

Counting gifts... I would be remiss if I didn't include my parents and their Godly legacy of love and acceptance and perseverance.  This gift has helped me recognize the importance of the other gifts in my life, and recognize that without Him, none of it would be possible.

Thanks, Mom and Dad.  I'm still learning... but I've had some pretty good teachers.  Happy 40th Anniversary!

1 comment: