Most people, I don't image, expect the kind of challenges we faced that first year of married life! God knows what we can handle with Him --and what we need to experience in order to grow in His likeness --and that year certainly provided much opportunity to grow! Six weeks after the wedding, Josh was diagnosed with a brain mass; five months after the wedding, I found out we were expecting Ethan; and eight months after the wedding, Freddie was diagnosed with the exact same brain mass as Josh. Yep, two brain surgeries and a baby (who we would soon find out came along with quite a few challenges of his own, too)!
A real man has muscle --and my man has used his mightily this year. Not only has he carried a little boy in a fixator and now in a cast, but he has certainly carried me. He has carried me through doubt and fear and sadness and joy and never once complained of an aching back. Over the last 8 years, I have watched him carry the weight of a youth ministry at church --and at home. I've listened to him read the Bible to our children and other people's children too many times to count and heard countless prayers in a youth filled church classroom and in our children's small bedrooms, too. That's right --real men pray; real men study; real men repent; real men recognize their need for help from the only One who can fill them with strength so that they, in turn, can strengthen their wives and children, too!
If you haven't figured it out yet, I love this man. I prayed for him specifically --for a man who would first love God and then love me and Josh (we were a package deal)! He has been with me from this: