Happy birthday my dear husband, I wish I could say that our 34 years together have been glorious, but we both know I’d be lying.
Even just this past Sunday I erupted all over you because I needed more time before I could leave and you were trying to help me by “hurrying me along” and I exploded.
“Leave without me. I can’t. I can’t. I’m going as fast as I can. Please just give me three minutes, I need three minutes.” I did apologize once we got in the car but that doesn’t erase what happened.
And yet even with every “explosion” you still love me.
I remember how career minded I was when we first got married. I would be out until late at night taking classes and you waited for me. Sometimes you’d even drive me early in the mornings. Even after I proclaimed, “Don’t get in my way. I’ll dismiss you easily.”
And yet even with that proclamation you stood by me.
I remember the all night fighting that happened way too many nights. Terrible words were said. Words that can never be taken back. An apology can only do so much.
And still you loved me and cared for me.
As I look back we’ve been through some rocky terrain. We’ve fallen, slipped, tripped, hauled, dodged, been cut open…but in the end we climbed. We climbed—together.
We’ve gotten closer to God and each other.
You’ve made mistakes, redirected, and have led the way. I’d follow you anywhere. Yes, somewhere along the way I went from “I’ll dismiss you” to “I’ll follow you anywhere.”
You waited for me to get there.
I’ve watched God turn you into a mighty man of God. A man I’m proud to serve with and cry with and celebrate with.
And oh, we have much to celebrate…
Raising our three kids. Talk about a challenge, boy that wasn’t easy. We made many mistakes but we did the best we could. And today we are both so proud of them and the people they have become. We got through those sleepless nights due to illness, late nights of homework, and praying nights over heartache, we made it through—together.
We saved and saved and bought a house…yes, we went without much but we saved for our house. We became homeowners and nested. It leaked and shook and got termite infected but we fixed it—together.
I witnessed God turning you into a pastor. You’ve affected countless lives for Jesus Christ. Oh my dear, you will never know the glorious work you’ve done until you reach Heaven. When that day comes I hope I am by your side as God says, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”
It’s true, all of our years have not been glorious but they’ve been magical. And I’d do it again.
It’s worth every fight, every disappointment, every trial—it’s been worth it.
You are worth it.
Thank you for sticking with me and loving me beyond what I deserve and for being a man I am exceedingly proud of.
Happy birthday, my dear husband, you are my hero.
Lucille Williams is the author of “From Me to We: A Premarital Guide For the Bride- and Groom- to- Be” available now in bookstores and at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Target, and Christianbook.com.