Happy Anniversary {A Story of Grace}

Fifth grade.  It was nighttime, and I was heading to sleep.  My mom came in, as usual at bedtime, but that night bearing sad news.  A divorce.  Ugh.  What came next was a new house for my mom, an apartment for my dad.  A Nintendo at each place.  Shuffling our stuff on Tuesday and Wednesday nights and chicken & biscuits from Hardees more often than before.   And more time with grandparents, yes.  We heard a lot of “I love you so much”  and “This has nothing to do with you” kinds of things.  I believed them.  But I also wondered, why?

Our new normal.  I entered middle school that next year and thanks to God’s grace alone, it was full of friendships and belonging, dances and movies, just it should be.   Little did I know, God’s grace was abundant even when I couldn’t see.  My mom and dad had committed to counseling.  Grace.  Friends and family prayed the real kinds of prayers, not the oh-i’ll-pray-for-you-and-then-forget types.   Grace.  And I, in my little bedroom, thought to ask God about it too.  I had grown up hearing the stories and singing the songs of faith, being dragged to church week after week.  So I wondered in the quiet of my heart, God, if you are real, you must be able to fix this too.   Grace.

There was some in-between stuff that I’m sure I’m forgetting.  What I do know is this, though.  One day during September of my 9th grade year, my mom came down into the kitchen and said very casually, your dad and I are getting married.  What?!  Yes, at one of Mike’s soccer games they were sitting on the sidelines and decided it was time.  Time to plan their {second} wedding.  Grace.  I didn’t really believe her until I watched the plans unfold.  A date set.  A dress bought.  Moving back into one house all together.  Grace.

Mike and I had the privilege of standing in our parent’s {second} wedding on December 10, 1993.  Twenty years ago today.   We watched my parents commit their lives to one another a second time, surrounded by family and friends.  And surrounded by God’s deep grace.  He is the One who healed their love.  He is the one who forgave them first, so they could forgive each other and find life.   And I’ve never connected this before, but now I see a perfect connection between this day and Christmas.  Jesus came for moments like these.  A baby king who would grow to show the world a whole new way of living and sacrificing.  A way that promotes grace, forgiveness, healing.  Christmas made my parents’ {second} wedding possible in the first place.  Grace.

So, Happy {20th} Anniversary to my mom and dad!  To two people who chose to believe that God could heal and forgive their deepest hurts.  Our families {Mike’s and mine} and generations to come will reap giant blessings because of God’s grace in your story.   May He continue to blessing your marriage for many more years to come.  I love you!



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