And the Lord God said, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him". (Genesis 2:18 New KJV)
"For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh; so then they are no longer two but one flesh". (Mark 10:8, 9 New KJV)
It was 30 years ago, last month, when I stepped onto the deck of a salt water fishing boat in Clearwater, Florida. Though I was thrilled to be taking the half-day excursion, the prospect of catching a fish or two was of little importance to me. I had already hooked a beauty my June bride, Ginny, who was with me hand-in-hand.
Most would agree it takes a special kind of lady to be in favor of going out ocean fishing on her honeymoon. As we rode the swells of the rough sea and endured the raunchy smell of squid bait, I knew I had a real keeper.
What I did not know was that we were establishing a pattern and molding a lifestyle. I believe now that we were unconsciously setting precedence and inadvertently following a godly principal. Whether by accident or by intent, we were forming an unbreakable relationship.
It was founded on "togetherness".
Without hesitation, I'll admit I'm glad to grocery shop or mall walk with my wife, as often as my schedule will permit because she cheerfully sat on cold metal bleachers in an unheated arena during the years that I played ice hockey.
I help her fold laundry because when I hunted, she walked along to kick up a pheasant or flush out a rabbit for me.
In the best interest of our health and safety, she does all the cooking. But I'm happy to help her clean up afterwards. Why? Because she has slid into chest waders and stepped into the Maumee River to fish with me.
Whether attending auto races or other countless sporting events, we did it together. The same can be said of our ministry work and different areas of volunteering.
Parenting, hobbies, interests and various involvements: they have all surrounded the practice of togetherness. Through it all, I have come to realize that what we do or where we go isn't nearly as important as who we are with. A trip to the store on a cold, rainy day can be just as fulfilling and enjoyable as a day in the sun at a tropical resort, if you'll let it be so.
Such time together is never lost or wasted. Nor do I choose to think of it as "time spent", as if to imply that it is used up and gone forever.
It is "time invested". And the return on that investment is beyond measure no matter the outcome of your events.
As it turned out, we didn't catch any fish that day in 1982, on the Gulf of Mexico, but it didn't matter to me. I had already landed a prize catch.
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it. (Ephesians 5:25 KJV)
(This article was published in Pathway Christian Newspaper July 2012)
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