So far, this week has been very interesting. Christina went away for three days with a few of her good college friends, so I was given the lone responsibility of watching our kids. This time away for Christina took months of planning. I realized that trying to coordinate everyone’s schedule is not the easiest thing to do. But by God’s grace, we were able to lock down these few days so that Christina can do something that she has not done, in literally 15 years.
It is hard to imagine that in all our years of marriage, Christina has never had time “alone” with her friends because she has been so busy taking care of the kids and holding down the fort when I do all my traveling. It blows me away that she has sacrificed so much for the family, for so many years.
The part that has been humbling me is discovering all that she does for the family. It has only been two days and I am feeling overwhelmed at all the little details of running the home in an efficient and orderly manner. My first thought was, “how in the world does Christina do this on a regular basis?” Being a pastor and overseeing a network of churches is hard, but I think what Christina does is harder.
It is not until you walk in someone else’s shoes, where you begin to understand the magnitude of what they do. It is so easy to take things and people for granted. It is easy to think that your work is harder or more important than someone else’s work. But the truth of the matter is that each person’s work and contribution are very important.
This is why I have been feeling this overwhelming sense of gratitude for Christina.
She has been a constant river in my life. She has refreshed me with her words, her kindness and her love. She has watered the soil around me with her sacrifice, her selflessness, and her steadfastness. She has splashed me with her joy, her laughter and her optimism.
Why has the Lord blessed me so much with someone like her in my life?
I am realizing more than ever before that I have received so much from her. I have received more than I deserve.
I remember making my wedding vows to her on June 1st, 1996. For the last 15 years, Christina went above and beyond what she promised to do. As I reflect on my vows, I know that I can do better. She is constantly showing me the power of grace. When a person receives something that they do not deserve, they are reminded of their unworthiness.
It is in this realization that the person, who has received more than they deserve, begins to live out a life of service to the person that they feel indebted to.
This is the Gospel.