Friday, April 05, 2013

the secret of success

This is a special day for my beloved's family, for it is the anniversary of his grandparents.  He is their eldest grandchild, born on their 25th wedding anniversary.  That was a while ago, and a lot has happened since then. 

Sixty-plus years of marriage do not elapse without struggle.  Arriving at this milestone requires each spouse’s commitment every day to living the vocation to which God has called them.  This daily acceptance of God’s will is a choice each spouse makes to work for the good of the other, to love each other as God loves each person.  When asked how they accomplished this feat of longevity, my beloved's grandmother is quick to note that prayer is essential to the equation.  Without a prayerful perspective, the ins and outs of daily life weigh heavily on shoulders with the best of intentions but little foundation upon which to rest.  

The pair who now call me their granddaughter (omitting the "in-law" part) continue to give witness to the power of faith, hope, and love in action by their daily commitment to prayer and self-sacrifice, using words only when necessary to explain with great humility the great blessing they have received of so many years spent hand in hand serving the Lord.  Built on the foundation of sacramental marriage, this couple (like so many others) has seen its share of happiest joys, deepest sorrows, and the gamut of emotions and experiences in between.   Their family and friends rejoice with them on the happy occasion of their anniversary and thank God for the blessing of knowing and learning from this couple as we do.    

Stories like this one serve as inspiration to those wondering how to make marriages last so long or how to keep children close to the faith.  My beloved's grandparents and other long-time married couples like them know the accomplishment is really a blessing that, along with the blessing of relative good health for both spouses, comes through having allowed themselves to be the instruments through which God works out his plan, by cooperating with the Lord through an attitude of self-giving, and by taking up the crosses big and small that the Lord sees fit to place in their paths every day.  This approach has made the Earthly journey the couples have traveled together an altogether happy one, but their ultimate goal is to see each other in Heaven. 

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