The idea that I have been married for ten years is hard to grasp. I know it is a drop in the bucket compared to the “forever” marriages of those who have been married forty years or more, but this is a big milestone for us! It is a benchmark for marriage in general. In this first decade of marriage, we have nurtured a fledgling business, moved once, had three children and crossed into our thirties. We have shed the naivety of our first decade as adults and have a more eyes-wide-open approach to life together as well as life in general. We no longer hold to the idea that life is a fairy tale, but we know that it can be even better if you let it. Because the reality is that none of us enjoy trials and heartache–they shake up our confidence in what we think we know. However, when we are on the other side we are more sure of what we can count on. 

I can count on this guy.

In ten years we have seen lack and we have seen surplus. We have had joyous blessings and we have had heartahce. We have been in mysteriously-lovely unity and in opposite-sides discord. We have not seen it all, but we have seen enough to know this world can rip you apart if you let it. 

I was asked recently about a good book to read to prepare you for marriage. I answered with two things:

First, I think the Five Love Languages is an excellent starting place. I think each person should know how their spouse feels loved. But secondly, and most importantly, I believe each person should be on a committed track of personal growth with the Lord. This commitment has proven the most beneficial thing in our marriage. The reason being, when you are nurturing an intimate relationship with God and truly listening to Him, He will go to you on behalf of your spouse. He will guide you into deeper love and understanding of their heart. This isn’t a magic bullet as it takes time (like all wonderful journeys do) and it requires humility and a true desire to hear truth from God. But it has been and will continue to be the best path for a lasting marriage. 

As we celebrate ten years, I am grateful for the lessons and the growth. I also know that I wouldn’t want to do this “brutiful” life with any other human. 

I love you Matthew Ferris, forever and always.