Monday 5 December 2011


Yesterday, in the morning service at a nearby church, two friends of ours renewed their marriage vows. We'd been at this sort of thing before, where after 25/30/40 years of life together, a couple wanted to re-affirm what they had said at the start. But this was different. The last four years have been difficult. Various issues surfaced and led to a separation. The house was sold, finances were difficult, times were tough. But, crucially, both of them had the right sort of support from people who walked with them through the difficulties, without taking sides, being honest without being judgmental.

At first there seemed little hope of a reconciliation. Where trust had been challenged, time for reflection was needed. For them to come to yesterday required courage. Courage to admit wrongdoing, faith to build again. But they got there. For those of us who had been close, it was very moving to listen to the promises they made to each other, before God. These were not standard promises from a prayer book, wonderful as those are. They had written them specially for the occasion, in the light of the past and looking with renewed joy and hope to the future.

Most marriages face challenges at some point and so many, sadly, succumb. To see our friends rebuilding was a thrilling experience of the preciousness of contrition, forgiveness and restoration.


  1. Its so encouraging to hear when so many give up completely in the face of adversity. Best advice I was given was, when times get tough, to love and cherish your partner and when you are done with that, to cherish (her) even more. Good advice from a Godly mentor.

  2. Nice comment, Cap'n. Sounds like you had a wise friend