Once upon a time there was an insecure young woman who dreamed of marrying a prince. She wasn’t interested in jewels and a crown, though. What she really wanted was a knight-in-shining-armor. A man who would love her so much he would lay down his life for her. A man who was bold and courageous. One who would drop everything, mount a horse and ride to her rescue because sometimes her insecurities came as monstrous trolls that threatened to carry her away to caves or evil ogres that desired to eat her alive. There were menacing demons that taunted her and invading enemies that robbed her of peace and joy. She knew it would take a special kind of man to save her from herself.
She dreamed of love. Not the superficial kind of love that only sees what’s on the surface, but the kind that reaches deep inside. The kind that would look past the heart into her very soul. The kind of love that wouldn’t be afraid of the dark places or the dank messes. The kind of love that would nurture and nourish all that was good in her. The kind that would see past the damage of life and the passage of time. The kind of love that would plant seeds of hope within her and then water them with patience, gentleness and kindness. The kind of love that would grow strong into a flourishing tree with roots that would run so deep no storm, no fire, no flood could tear it down. The kind of love that would make her feel special…beautiful…treasured…
Funny how love came when she least expected it. It didn’t ride in on a white horse. It came quietly with a simple knock on her heart’s door. She knew when her prince arrived because her heart laughed. And danced. And sang. Her heart began to breathe freely. She was swept off her feet and carried off into the happily-ever-after.
The prince and the young woman became one.
“I, Wayne, take you, Nina, to be my wedded wife. From this day forward I promise and covenant to love, honor, and cherish you in the midst of all we do together. To you I now commit my life, to encompass all joys and sorrows, all triumphs and hardships, every experience of living. This commitment I make in love, to be kept in faith, lived in hope, and throughout all time made anew.”
Throughout all time…
The princess may not have been looking for jewels and a crown, but she received them, anyway. She and her prince will one day inherit a great kingdom, a kingdom not of this world because their king is King Jesus. The prince, with all his spiritual riches, holds true to the covenant he made with his bride. He loves her more than he loves himself. He lays down his life for her every single day. He loves her sacrificially, selflessly, supernaturally. He cares for her deeply, devotedly, delightfully. And he still rescues her willingly, wonderfully, wittingly. The princess is the most blessed woman in the whole wide world.
For thirty-five years the prince and princess have journeyed through life together and even after all these years, the prince still rescues his bride from monstrous trolls and evil ogres from time-to-time. He is more bold and courageous today than he was when they first met. He is her knight-in-shining-armor. Her heart still laughs and dances and sings when they are together. In his eyes, she has never felt more special, more beautiful, more treasured.
Love still reigns in the palace these days, but the prince no longer has to knock on the heart’s door of his princess for it stays wide open all the time.
All the time and throughout all time…it’s a forever-thing.
Happy Anniversary, My Prince. I love you more today than yesterday. I will love you more tomorrow. I am so glad I will spend eternity with you.