I didn’t realize it until this past week, but it sometimes causes me great trepidation that what I share here at Mrs. Gore’s Diary will cause a reader, perhaps walking through suffering or experiencing a life very different than mine, to experience discontentment or frustration with their own life…
And my trepidation is so great that I often hold back for fear of wounding a soul in distress who happens upon my words.
Will the single woman be saddened by my glowing endorsement of marriage?
Will the childless woman feel pain when I describe the more glorious aspects of motherhood?
Will someone mistake my blessings as luck, or worse, God being nicer to me than He is to them?
It pains me to even think of it.
And as a result, I sometimes filter my happiest moments, for fear of adding to the potential hardships of my sisters in the faith.
But the thought came upon me this past week that, while my heart is pure in those thoughts, I might be doing a disservice to the path God has set my feet upon and that, in a world that is ever attacking the family, and marriage, and motherhood, and femininity, I should speak more honestly and comprehensively about my life, even on my very best days. As much as I strive to remain transparent in my struggles as a wife and mother, so I should strive to remain transparent in my joys and triumphs.
If I am going to consider honesty one of the most important aspects of my writing, then…I must be honest through and through, yes?
It was good – or more likely, supernatural – timing, for my heart is extremely full tonight, and for good reason…
Our days with little ones are hectic. Distracting. Busy.
During our courtship, we had little more to do than see every movie that was released and work really hard at not fornicating. But these days…well, we’re wiping kids and looking for missing shoes and strapping babies and toddlers into carseats and peeling and slicing apples and running up and down and up and down and up and down the stairs and breaking up fights and, basically, working around the clock, not only to keep our 3 little ones alive and healthy, but to train them in the fear and knowledge of God and to lead them in the ways of Christ.
Bringing up children is without a doubt the hardest work I have ever done, and Mr. Gore is right there alongside me, working as hard as I am.
Therefore, on most nights, after finally tucking our ragamuffins into bed, we quite literally collapse into two separate heaps in the living room, me on our old antique settee (with springs that poke me in the bottom), him in our favorite leather chair, and, aided by our favorite sitcom of the moment, we allow ourselves to just relax and melt into the deliciously quiet evening.
And it just happens. The days are so full and the nights become so habitual that…sometimes I forget to think about him.
Oh, I kiss him goodbye and I welcome him home and I laugh at his jokes and I work by his side and I cuddle up next to him at night, but somehow, in the midst of living, I can fail to ponder and relish the gift of…him.
But the other night, I had this dream. I was contractually bound to another man in an old-fashioned betrothal, but I was madly in love with Mr. Gore. And he was in love with me. Separated from him in my dream, and intent on being with him forever, my heart – the real one, not the dream one – must have quickened within me, and as I continued to sleep and eventually view our happy and triumphant ending, my eyes were miraculously pulled out of the fog of our daily routine, and I woke up with an incredibly happy heart, one that was focused and fixated on this man who has stood faithfully beside me through nearly 8 years of marriage.
I woke up in love.
And my, it felt so good to go about my regular duties with a lovesong in my heart, one that saw beyond the work I was doing and was intentionally and singularly focused on one of the greatest gifts God has given me.
My best friend.
He knows more about the ugliest parts of my heart than anyone else on the planet, and he loves me anyway. He has seen me at my most raw and vulnerable and he doesn’t scorn me the next day. He has heard my grittiest confessions, and he freely forgives, every time.
And, though human and as prone to failure as the rest of us, he strives to love me as Christ loves the church.
And that is my favorite part of our love story, and one that I am now committed to proclaiming, not that we’ve stumbled into some kind of Disney-prince-and-princess-happily-ever-after, but that our faithfulness to one another and our enjoyment of our married state points to something far more beautiful than the fleeting and emotional love that this world seeks so doggedly after and always fails to find…
it points to something higher. Something truer. And something very, very lovely.
Because, without the grace of God, and built on anything other than the truth of Scripture, our marriage would be nothing more than a roll of the dice, hinging on how we woke up feeling that day and whether or not we had a good dream during the night.
It is that great grace, undeservedly given, that enables us to choose to love each other. For life.
I don’t know about you, but I think that makes the story of Aladdin and Jasmine seem kind of lame in comparison. Magic carpet ride…meh.
That lovesong in my heart only continues to increase as our 8th wedding anniversary draws nigh.
A couple of days ago, I watched my favorite movie with my kids, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and the “June Bride” song that our entire wedding was built around brought back so many cherished memories that I was practically a puddle of sentimentality by the time the movie was over.
And so if you don’t mind, I’d like to revisit some of those memories here in the weeks to come.
Not to make you gag.
Not to make you pine.
Not to make it seem like my life is all sunshine and flowers and roses…
but to recount how faithful God has been to two people who were conceived in sin and came into this world hating the Light.
Let us all start cherishing and celebrating our marriages, not because we are “lucky in love”, but because they can be one of the most beautiful tools used to point a dying world to a very living Savior.
Especially those of us who married in June…