Ok, so I might not be all sarcastic & goofy today. That's because I'm in love. Well, I am in love with a sarcastic & goofy man, but I won't aim any sarcasm at him. He doesn't deserve it. My kids, on the other hand. . . .Ok, well maybe I'll be sarcastic about my kids and my hubby some other day, but not today.
Monday was our 13th anniversary. It's a good thing I don't have triskaidekaphobia (that is, fear of the number 13). Otherwise, I might have done something drastic, like erasing the date from our calendar because the number 13 is bad luck, and then today would be December 3, in which case, I would be one day closer to Christmas-induced insanity. As it is, it's still only December 2, because I am not a triskaidekaphobiac. And I have just laid around in the post-Thanksgiving stupor for 5 days or so, which means I really do have to get cracking on Christmas preparations.
But I digress. Thirteen years of marriage. Wedded bliss. Matrimonial harmony. Seriously. I have never regretted being married to my husband. Some people struggle with marriage, but I just don't. I love Al and I always will. Period. If you are interested in our "Love Story", click this link: HERE. And I know you are very interested in our love story!
To make a long story short, Al was a great friend for 6 years. No feelings on my side of things, though. He was just a really good friend. But Al finally won me over. Not sure how, but I think it had something to do with his lavish love. He loves me and I have never doubted it. Al's love is and always has been acted out in service. In college, he was always the guy first to arrive and last to leave at our campus ministry meetings and parties - because he helped do the set up and clean up. He was always the one who would help stranded girls with their dying cars and he was the computer-glitch-fixing guru. He even drove me the 350 miles from East Lansing, Michigan to Random Lake, Wisconsin (a teeny burb north of Milwaukee, I think - I wasn't really paying attention) so that I could surprise my mom, who was visiting my aunt in Random Lake, for a birthday or something. That's just the kind of guy Al was / is. Although, I think he might have some vested interest in the Random Lake trip, in retrospect (man, was I thick-headed!)
Al is a servant. And when he finally won me over with his friendship, his service to me (and my car), and his love for me, I realized that God was using him in my life. I experienced the love of God through Al. I was a naive, selfish, broken young woman, and Al showed me Christ-like, selfless love. He loved me for me. And throughout the 13 years of our marriage, he has put up with a lot of emotional junk that I've had to sort through. I mean, the average person might have just enough emotional garbage to fill a 2-gallon trash can. Al received a temperamental, manic-depressive, borderline suicidal landfill the size of Lake Michigan. Well, OK, maybe that's a little bit exaggerated, but he has definitely had infinitely more patience for me than the average man would have had.
And not only has Al gifted me with supreme patience (another definition for patience is long-suffering. . . .definitely a very suitable word for what he has had to deal with), but he is very affectionate, which I need. He is funny, which I thoroughly enjoy. He is my best friend.
AND he gives me great gifts. I mean, not to sound materialistic, but Al is really good at giving me awesome presents - for anniversaries, Christmases, birthdays, even random days in between. Remember a few months ago when he came home with a kick-ass vacuum cleaner the very day I found out that I had severe allergies to dust and mold. No, he didn't wait until he had thoroughly researched every possible vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter - he went directly to Sears and bought me the best one with 2 HEPA filters. Yeah, so a vacuum cleaner is not very romantic, but it was definitely love in action to me.
Over the years, Al has bought me: a freezer, central air conditioning, all my favorite Sims, Sims 2, and Sims 3 video games and expansion packs, a new van, and countless other "little" surprises.
On our anniversary, he came home with this: a totally kick-butt laptop! with capability to play all my Sims games (which require lots of memory & amazing video capability), wireless, of course, and even a built-in webcam. Hmm, not sure if I'll start v-logging, though, so don't hold your breath. Oh, AND the newest expansion pack for Sims 3. Yeah, and we weren't even going to buy each other presents for the next 19 years because we're dirt poor, sort of. But Al always has a plan. And this was his plan, to floor me with a rockin' computer. Yes, I love my laptop, I love my blog time, I love my connection to the outside world! There is no way I can tell you how much I experienced Al's love by his gifting me this laptop. I mean, read this post, and you'll see how much I loved my old laptop.
Anyway, before you all get jealous of my electronically gifted husband, I will tell you the major thing that hit me when Al came home with this outstanding present. When he walked in, testosterone racing over the pure, unadulterated power of this magnificent machine, all I had to give him in return was a cookie. Granted, it was a large, heart-shaped cookie that I had baked all by myself, using his favorite recipe. But still, it was a cookie. Oh yeah, and a card that I had printed from the computer and it wasn't even glued together or anything so it was just like 2 sheets of paper folded together, kind of like a little kid would make for her daddy. I felt a little sheepish. But that's when it hit me. I had once again experienced God's love through Al.
God's love is so lavish that he wants us to have the best of everything. He wants us to be filled with pure joy at all He has given us. He loved us so much that He even took on the form of a man and allowed Himself to be crucified for our sins. And He did it freely, willingly, lovingly. And every day, He has great and amazing gifts for us. And all I have to give Him is a homemade chocolate chip cookie. And that's OK. He loves the cookie, and He still loves me.
And so does Al.