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Thursday, June 01, 2006

My Best Life Now

Today is the fourth anniversary of Team Hammer’s marriage. If you are unfamiliar with the story, I put together a three-post series on it starting here. We will celebrate today when I get home from my second job at about 4pm, by playing with the kids, completing household tasks, eating family dinner, putting the two toddlers in the bath and the bed, and my retirement from the family events at 7:30pm as I attempt to get 5 ½ hours sleep for work tomorrow. How romantic! We’ll be lucky if we get a passionate kiss in front of the kids in.

Mrs. Hammer and I run on a budget so tight that if I forget my lunch at home, I don’t eat lunch. (Mind you, our cars are paid for and we have no consumer debt). I never see her alone during the work-week, and our Friday nights follow a humorous cycle that terminate with Hammertime getting cranky in his 22nd hour of wakefulness after 10pm. Compared to now, my soldier days were full of free time!

Today, I want to make my anniversary card to my wife public. I am an incredibly blessed man and no more so than in my wife. She more than completes me – she makes me better. She makes me more than I ever would be mentally, spiritually and emotionally. She has supported me as I transitioned the family from a $70,000+ a year job with great security and unbeatable benefits into two months of unemployment, full-time seminary, two part-time jobs with stupid hours (for one of them), little personal time or shared parenting time and less than $25,000 a year. She teaches me about myself, about people and about the Holy Spirit. I will go so far as to say that we may actually have the perfect marriage. Now, perfect is a relative term, so it is as perfect as humans can get in a fallen world. It’s not that we never fight, but we are never disrespectful. It’s not that we don’t disagree, but we know when the discussion is over and it is time to move on. It’s not that we don’t make mistakes, but we share grace as our Lord Jesus Christ has done for us, and always forgive, even when the other has hurt us. It’s not that we haven’t been betrayed before and may even occasionally face those fears, but know in our hearts that such fears are unfounded and choose instead to trust. We know each other, know our roles, and trust that God the Father has given us and will give us what we need, when we need it.

I honestly could not think of a woman who is any more perfect for me than she is – a woman who is independent and intelligent, yet recognizes when it is time to submit to a final decision; a woman who is incredibly attractive yet modest in dress; a woman who reads her Bible and prays with faith and expects God to show up; a woman who wants to learn thing on her own but isn’t afraid to ask me to help with something she may not understand, yet won’t accept an explanation that doesn’t jive even if it is from me; a woman who is frugal yet fashionable, a master cook and house manager, who loves her Lord and her friends enough to risk all to bring them together, and who weeps when the ones she loves refuse the salvation offered them. She is a woman with a heart for God, a heart for people, and a heart for me.

Simply put, after the Triune God, there is no greater blessing in my life than my wife. When I talk to single friends, I tell them that there is a lady out there for them who is nearly perfect – but as good as she may be, she won’t be Mrs. Hammer. Perfection has been laid aside for me, because I am hers and she is mine. I don’t preach a gospel of “Your Best Life Now”, because it is heretical – but for me, my wife is the blessing from God that, despite financial distress, physical exhaustion, family troubles, and uncertainty of the future, has given me my best life now.

Happy anniversary, darling. Thank you, Lord.


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