I folded the poem entitled "Day Twenty" and looked up, with tears brimming, at my husband of twenty years. His eyes were moist too and suddenly, twenty-five years of knowing one another culminated in this moment. Through sickness and health, through beginning with little and paying off debt, through four babies and sleepless nights, through misunderstanding and anger and passion, through fierce and protective love, through living in apathy as Christians to trying to seek God with our whole hearts, we've traversed together. Our mutual gaze was wrought with memories and a deep knowing that this is it--we're playing for keeps--and only by God's grace have we been kept.
Every evening for twenty days leading up to our anniversary, Terry had written a silly or romantic poem, coupled with a gift that signified his love for me, us, or our family. The gifts were sometimes tangible, a couple were activities, or something he'd do for me. But, each one was thoughtfully planned out and greatly appreciated by me. He clasped my hand. Tonight was the grand finale of that anniversary planning and he desired to celebrate our forgiveness toward each other which is the beautiful act commanded by God that is part of His keeping grace we've experienced. All the gifts, all the poems and all of the thoughtfulness could not have matched the reality that our hearts were truly entwined because of our great God and His plan for us. We could see it so clearly. And celebrate we did!