Wednesday, July 24, 2013

"The Vow"

We live in a day and an age where vows mean very little.  The wedding day was meant to be more than just dressing up to repeat a bunch of words and get a piece of paper.  It is SO much more…

I just finished reading the book “The Vow.”  It was awesome!  The book told the true life account of Kim and Krickitt Carpenter… quite a bit different from the movie.  Just a couple months after their wedding day they were in a devastating car accident that left Krickitt with a massive head injury and in a coma for weeks.  On that day the course of their lives was altered and would never be the same.  Krickitt lost a part of her memory that she would never regain… her dating, engagement, and marriage to her husband.  Even though she didn’t remember this man who seemed a stranger to her, her family and friends reassured her of her love for him and the vows she had made.  In the midst of such extreme trauma to her brain her spiritual life seemed to remain in tact… her connection with God was secure.  The road ahead for these newlyweds was one of a daily struggle, but their commitment was for the long haul.  They both knew with God all things were possible!   Kim sought to make his wife fall in love with him all over again and she did.  They remarried about 2 ½ years after their first wedding date, so Krickett could remember forever the day she made her vows publicly to the man she loved.  What an amazing testimony of the great sacrifice, yet great reward of keeping your vows.

I made a vow to my husband on this day 20 years ago… our wedding day.  I made a life-long commitment to Al Davis, I said… “I, Julie, take you Al to be my wedded husband, to have and to hold, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part, I will always be faithful to you, and from this moment forward we shall be one.” 

These vows that we make to our spouses are a serious thing.  The dictionary defines “vow” as… a solemn promise, pledge, or personal commitment.  It’s not a promise to break, but a promise to keep.  My commitment to my husband is for the long haul… “in sickness and in health, for riches or for poorer, until death do us part.”  This is a commitment that is important to me and one I want to keep! 

Keeping our vows is a daily choice.  Storms of life will come!  When they do you have a choice as a couple:  you can hold tightly on to each another and ride the storm out TOGETHER becoming stronger in the end… or you can do it alone and be ripped apart.  God is the cement that holds us together.  With God in the center of our hearts and marriages, we can make it through anything.  Be a commitment keeper.  No matter what you face, do it together!

I can honestly say I have tested almost all of the vows I made over the years with my husband.  Sickness… yep.  Poor… yep.  Death… um, not yet?  It hasn’t been easy.  We have had to make a conscious choice to stick with the relationship even when things got hard.  When the stress is high, and the bank account is empty… hold tightly on to each other.  When you are all run down with nothing left to give… stick to your commitment…  When you are at the end of your rope and you don’t know what you are going to do… dig your heels in, link arms, and face it together.  You can make it through anything with God’s help.

It is twenty years ago today I married my best friend and it was one of the best decisions I ever made.  I love him more today than the day I married him.  Our love over the years has grown to become more than words, it has developed into a love of action lived out on a daily basis.

Thank you, Al Davis for being who you say you are all the time (a man of integrity).  Thank you for being an amazing and loving father to my boys.  Thank you for working jobs you hated to provide for our family.  Thank you for setting your dreams and passions aside to help me get well.  Thank you for generously forgiving me when I hurt you with my words and trusting me with the secrets of your heart.  Your love for me fleshed out in action as you cared for me when I was sick all of those years will forever be etched in my heart.  I will love you forever!

Vows are a serious thing.  Shouldn’t we be just as serious about our dedication to God?  Isn’t it supposed to be a life-long commitment?  Storms will come in our walk with God, but He is committed to weather the storms with us.  Link arms with Him today.  Love is a choice!  I challenge you to make a vow to God… a life-long, stick with it commitment to Him.  Just like a couple repeats vows on their wedding day, say these vows to God today…

“I _______, take you, God to be my heavenly father, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part, according to your holy ordinance; I pledge myself to you.”

My husband didn’t abandon me because I got sick.  I didn’t give up on our relationship because we weren’t rich.  When we faced difficult times, overwhelming circumstances, or unplanned obstacles, we didn’t give up… we linked arms and pushed through together.  When Kim and Krickitt Carpenter faced overwhelming odds, they pushed through and God did a miracle.  Don’t give up so easily on God when things don’t turn out the way you expected.  He is in this relationship for the long haul, are you?  Make that life-long commitment to Him today.  I guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

Living to leave a legacy,