This was written in May 2011
I sit behind this computer, a cup of blended pumpkin spice and peppermint stick coffee with me.
Today is Mary and my 23rd year wedding anniversary.
We have had a problem free marriage. By that I mean, unresolved issues.
We have never taken unsolved problems to bed.
We have never had an argument that was not resolved that same day.
Are we special; I don’t think so?
Am I perfect? Just ask my children!
Introspectively, the key to our success has been putting God and His will always first.
We met in 1986 in church, after Mary’s return from the mission fields.
We became great friends but assumed that God had destined us for others.
Later, we discovered that God had our tracks cross several times.
Our paths intersected at North Beach Elementary School in 1962.
North Beach sat in the heart of Miami Beach. I attended there after leaving Cuba. There, I learned English. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, I ducked under its school desks.
Just months after leaving North Beach, little Mary also attended!
In 1977, my family moved from St. Croix, Virgin Islands, to Key Biscayne, Florida. My parents got a rental on Island Drive. I was to finds out that Mary’s family left Island Drive, just before our arrival. Coincidence or divine destiny? I believe the latter, from a God who knows the beginning to the end.
If you are single, and loves the Lord, be heartened today. God has that perfect one for you, like he had for me.
On the same day that I passed my FCC General Radio Operators License Test, which I had failed twice, God opened up our eyes. This was 1987. We had been friends for a year and half. Now, we knew that God was calling us to marriage. God knows how to open doors, and keep them shut. When you are in His will, He can move with blazing speed.
After three dates, we knew the calling to marriage and obeyed. Six months later we wed. We were not in love when we married. We joined together in obedience to God. The falling in love came after tying the knot, and it’s been fabulous.
I was thirty-four and Mary thirty-two. God had me in celibacy for nine years. I had come to Him at twenty-five. My life was so wrecked that it took Him that time to get me to where I could handle marriage.
I understand the loneliness of Christian singlehood. My advice is that you become married to Jesus during the single years. Draw close to Him, and become filled with His intimate touch. Most of your loneliness will leave. God brought Mary, when I was content to be single, even for the rest of my life. I was enthralled, filled and in love with God. I had forgotten about marriage, when my sweet Mary came.
I recommend, not to date, but wait for God’s one to come. I have seen many a good Christian fall. The flesh is weak, and God knows that. The problem with falling is the devils condemnation which will last for many months and severely injure the Christian’s walk.
From the beginning, Mary and I prayed together. Prayer is not simply talking to God. This prayer is about listening to God’s voice, His will, and then obeying.
We’ve learned the secret, that in all things always doing the will of God and laying ours down, everything, and I mean everything, turns out right. We have never gone wrong. Those who know us will tell you that we have done many wacky and crazy things in the Name of the Lord. But like cats that are repeatedly dropped from a third floor, God makes us land on all fours.
God does not have two voices. He only has one voice. If a couple hears two things, something is wrong. This means that multiple agendas have not been surrendered to embrace God’s one agenda. But this is the secret to a good marriage! Always, and in everything, couples lay down your will, and embrace God’s. He only has one voice and one will. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all things that you want will be added to your life.
Always put parents, children, and families, second, to God and His will. This sounds harsh, but it’s vital and true. I have seen many place families, and children before God and His will, to very damaging results. The Heavenly Father is loving, good and wise. If we put Him above all, He blesses our parents and children with the very best.
Finally, Mary and I are entirely honest with each other. We do not keep secrets. Good communication is critical. Talking things out and praying things through is crucial.
As for a family, God taught us to be a team. We have striven to do as much as possible together. Our children come before ministry. We let them find their own way with the Lord. We don’t ask them to copy our Christian walk.
I can say so much more. Be encouraged today, as I thank my God for my lovely wife and my four wonderful children. God has blessed our 23rd anniversary by having our oldest, Lexy, who lives in NYC, spend the summer with us.
God is so great, if we always put Him first! You won’t go wrong.