Monday, February 13, 2012

The Tree of Marriage

Well that's what I call it anyway. Our new home sits on five acres, which sounds to me like more than it is. Not that I want anymore than that I just always pictured five acres bigger somehow. Our yard is plenty big and I'm not looking forward to mowing it, and then the yard is surrounded on all sides by lots and lots of trees. I love it and can't wait for summer when they are covered in leaves. Ben and I love to be outside together, but after looking at the house multiple times and then even after living in it for several weeks, we had not yet walked the property together. So finally one day we did, and it was then that I noticed these two trees down in our pasture area. We could have horses there someday but we never will. But back to the tree.

These two trees really spoke to me when I saw them.
The story they sparked in my head I've been thinking about ever since.
Sunday was National Marriage Sunday, Ben and I renewed our vows,
and tomorrow is Valentine's Day. It's been years since Ben got me flowers, but guess what just showed up on my doorstep. (Insert large grin here.)
Back to the trees.
These two trees grow around eachother as if embracing in a hug.
I thought that was so cool and then I started picturing what it took to get to this point.
While picturing it I picture Ben and I and other married couples.
We both had our roots firmly planted in our own beliefs, our faith, the families we were raised in.
The soil held us firm.
We both grew with solid trunks.
This is where the two trees begin to wrap around eachother.
This is where I believe a marriage starts, when you make that commitment before God and everyone, you make the commitment to wrap around eachother.
You hold on and you always look up, just as the trees trunks look up into its branches.
Branches shoot off everywhere, some places you can't tell which branch belongs to which tree. Those are the branches I like the most those are the steps in life we took together, the ones that we both agreed and went for it.
Then there are the branches that are definitely making a statement, the ones that say I am this tree, those have taught us plenty of lessons along the way.
The times when we tried to do something on our own and didn't include the other person, or the times we did it anyway knowing it might hurt the other person. Some branches cut off the branch of the other tree, it is so like marriage, when we strike out to do our own will with no regard for our spouse, we cut down them, a piece of them is strangled. Sometimes the scar is permanent, others it is temporary. But that's what brings us back to the trunk.
It is solid, it holds firm to the embrace of the two trees, and this is where the roots that started as two trees have now become one. I am thankful our roots are planted firmly in God's hands so when are branches do try to go out on their own and forget to or purposefully disregard the other person, we can forgive because we know God has forgiven us.
This tree is together forever, and that I know to be true for Ben and I.
We are in it til the end, when one of these trees dies it will be impossible to entangle it from the other person. Forever Ben will be intertwined with me and I with him.
I hope to live in this house for a long time and look out at this tree.
It brings all kind of emotions into me when I look at it.
I glimpse some of our hardest times and some of our happiest times, and I'm thankful God gave me the gift of a wonderful man in Ben. I love him beyond words and am extremely thankful for the family he is raising with me.

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