Dear Peter and Wendy,
Twenty years is an awfully long time- a score, in fact! Today, on this beach, as you celebrate your score and renew your wedding vows, my prayers and heart are with you. The infinite grains of sand beneath your feet were once heavy rocks burdening the land and sea. Over time and with God’s direction, they have fractured ad infinitum to the powder that now caresses your toes and cushions your heels.
There are rocks of every imaginable shape and composition in a marriage. Some feel like immovable boulders. But with the intentional language of love, the persistence of commitment, and the continual touch of desire and affection, those rocks turn to stones turn to gravel and to the velvety carpet of sand you now stand upon. This process takes time, courage, negotiation, and most of all, love.
For a quarter century, I have had the privilege of witnessing the development of your relationship. It has instructed much of my own marital experience, inspiring forgiveness and providing hope. There has been ugly and beauty and mystery and fear along the path. But your incredible dedication to partnership and trust have sustained you and healed you from the scraped knees, stubbed toes, and blistered heels of the journey.
The honor of standing witness at your nuptuals 20 years ago was one of the most cherished gifts I possess. I gained a second best friend that day and am filled with gratitude for the thousands of times and ways I have watched you struggle, grow, and celebrate together. You have worked so very diligently to feed your marriage with love, kindness, generosity, and patience. Today your children, the tangible gifts of your love, stand with you to witness the fruit of your labors. You have taught them that marriage is not a Disney film; that it has textures and layers and trials. But with faith and devotion to the process and the long-term, it is not only attainable but joyful.
Bend down and scoop up a handful of the fine silt your work has wrought. Let the grains slip between your fingers and breathe deeply in the assurance that your labor has been worth it. Rest in the knowledge that you have created the material from which concrete foundation is built. Thank you for sharing your journey with us and for continuing to inspire us with your example. May God continue to bless you today and for the next four score of your journey!