I have not updated this page recently and may not do so all that frequently for some time ahead. Tomorrow Sara and I will celebrate our thirty-seventh wedding anniversary. I can honestly say that I have never been more in love with this woman, never more appreciative of what her gifts and wisdom have added to our journey, and never more joyful at being in her presence. Though we had no idea where this journey would take us thirty-seven years ago, I am so grateful that God’s work in each of us has brought us closer and closer together.
For the past seventeen years Sara and I have openly shared this stage of our journey in books, articles, podcasts, and teachings. We have answered every email sent to us and have continued to make our lives available to people around the world in personal conversations whether it be here in the States or in far-off lands. We have been blessed to know so many people and for people to have opened their hearts so widely to us. All that travel, however, has meant that Sara and me spend many days apart. She has embraced that with incredible grace and is so generous in helping me share with the world the realities of living loved.
A few weeks ago, our lives took an unforeseen turn. It seems God has chosen this season to bring to light some painful experiences from Sara’s childhood that she didn’t even know were there, and to bring her to a more spacious place of freedom. And in the process our relationship has had to change to make room for his working. It began while I was in Russia and shook our marriage to its core. Sleepless nights, misunderstandings, long emails, and prayers took us through some painful places, but helped us connect at a far deeper level than we ever thought possible. For now, she needs me in a way she has not in the past and I have no greater joy than being exactly what she needs me to be right now and I am giving my heart fully to that.
I doubt that will change substantially what God has asked us to do in the world, but does mean that that work will rightfully take a back seat to what God is doing in her and in us! I am alongside Sara now in a way I never imagined and in the process I’m learning so much about the nature of God’s kind of loving, both in how Sara loves me, and in how I’m finding great joy in loving her.
Victor Hugo was right, “To love another person is to see the face of God.” When we lay down our wants and needs to envelop another person with compassion and honor, we get to see a reflection of God glory that is full of wonder. I’ve been invited to love Sara at a deeper level than I knew she needed, or knew I even wanted. Doing so has drawn us closer together, but also revealed Father’s love to us in some practical ways. Here’s some of what we’ve been learning:
You might be tempted to guess what circumstance lies behind these words, but you’d probably be wrong. I’m protecting her by not saying more than I am sharing here. This will be her story to tell in time and if she wants. Your prayers are welcome during this season, but I wanted you to know that Sara and I will be taking more space together in days to come, which may limit my availability for other things. So if my blog doesn’t get updated regularly, if we skip a podcast or two, or emails get backlogged, please know that there are more important things afoot for both of us right now.
I hope you’ll be patient with us during this time, because without apology I’m going to put her first and the work God is doing in the one I love like no other.