On Patience: {The Marrying Kind}

by | Feb 13, 2012 | Uncategorized

It all changed when we moved to the east coast. We had a reason to drive to the summer cottage in Canada instead of flying on a plane from Phoenix. Eighteen hours in a mini-van with two kids and a dog seemed reasonable to him. And why don’t we do it in one shot, instead of unloading just to sleep for a few hours.

It was then that the disparity in our patience scales revealed themselves like seeing a woman without makeup for the first time.

Because I start counting the hours remaining until I step on permanent land, after the first potty stop – four hours in. And the accumulation of  miles we travel over these twenty-one years together have changed me from a kite spinning furious in the wind to one that glides free on waving gusts of his patience.

But really, his patience roots deep like Live Oaks waving their mossy arms in the Deep South. It’s been there since the beginning. When his mother gives him money, tells him to walk a few blocks through city traffic, get lunch at Burger King because everyone else in the house is violently ill. Only six years old when he stretches out his arm to the cashier, trusts she will return the correct change back in to his little palm.

Patience is the child of faith, and together they fit him like a well-worn pair of jeans. Comfortable and forgiving. Unfortunately, mine still need some breaking in.

I realize how tight they fit when we discipline our kids. The way my heart races to fix the murky imperfection in the stars to see the Big Dipper, while he gazes love through questions that reveal their heart; sees how the stars dangle configured in objects and truth I couldn’t see before.

Patience understands that beauty opens it petals when saturated in love. That expectations stunt growth, kill a flower at its roots.

I am a well-watered garden.   

He waters me patient since the first date. When he opens doors, leaves gifts on the stoop, cooks dinner after a long day at work, when I pretend not to be home because this kind of love feels uncomfortable – at first.  

Because when a girl grows up with male absence, no manly voice to lead or big hands to hold, this kind of adoration feels awkward, uncomfortable.

Since the first time I lay hands on men’s underwear, iron collared shirts with starch, lay beside this man in bed, he loves me patient.

And on that first time we travel thousands of miles to the cottage with a baby seed growing in my womb, he asks me if I like it here. This place where he grew up, spent summers frolicking along sandy beach, wading in azure blue. Can we start our own memories here?

I do like it here with you. I do.

As we embark on the day of love, I give thanks for my husband and our marriage. Joining Seth and Amber Haines @ The Run a Muck for their series on Marriage Letters, this one on patience.

On Tuesday, linking with On Your Heart Tuesday and Soli Deo Gloria.

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  1. Robin

    This gift God has given you to put words from your heart on paper moves my heart every time. Please do not question your talent and way with words. Your word pictures are as beautiful as the photography you place on your blog. Thank you for mentoring me through your writings. You my friend are a treasure from the Lord.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh Robin, thank you my sweet friend. If you only knew what a battle I waged this morning trying to get this post up. We are having trouble with slow internet (since we paid to have faster service!). I was that kite spinning furious again and H was a calm sea during it all. He laughed when he saw that I wrote about patience! I needed your encouragement – trust me – your words were His words to me.

  2. hopefuldays

    beautiful thoughts and photos, thanks for sharing….

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you, enjoyed visiting your space today too.

  3. roseann elliott

    Patience understands that beauty opens it petals when saturated in love. That expectations stunt growth, kill a flower at its roots….oh could not have found a better sentence to describe my husband love to me…
    we have been truly blessed…

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We are blessed women, aren’t we? What a gift!

  4. Nikki

    Your analogies get me every time, Shelly. Beautiful post as always. Thank you for encouraging me today to celebrate the differences we have in marriage. with patience.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Nikki! Enjoyed your guest post today too friend.

  5. tara // pohlkottepress

    this made me laugh out loud. My husband thinks that road trips like this are just GENIUS…I step out of the car looking like I was a rat seeing the light of day for the first time in weeks. And the bit about the stars? oh, child. you got me.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yep, I’ll remember you when we climb into the van this summer Tara. We don’t do it in a day anymore, I mean honestly! The plus side: he does most of the driving and I get to read lots.

  6. charinabrooks

    What a beautiful letter of thanks on patience and marriage. Thank you Shelley!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Charina, always appreciate your encouragement.

  7. Paula

    Hello from your aunt…..another kite spinning furiously, ha! LOVE the analogy. I too appreciate the love and patience of my dear husband. He will be traveling late from FL to return to me on Valentine’s Day. Love you and your words as always.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Love you too. The kids opened their Valentines after school. They chomped on the chocolate and loved getting the money. Harrison already has his spent. Hope you have a great Valentines Day.

  8. Positively Alene

    That was beautiful! Blessings from the Joy Dare on this day of love.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks so much, its a pleasure to meet you. Enjoyed visiting your space this evening too.

  9. HopeUnbroken

    “expectations stunt growth.” these words will be spinning in my mind for a few days.
    so enjoyed this sharing.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      I just realize how much I do it to myself, place those expectations on myself and it just keeps me stuck somewhere I don’t want to be. My husband frees me by not having them.

  10. Lisa

    What a beautifully written story. I loved reading it and I can see a little of myself in your words. My husband is typically more patient than I, and I have learned a lot from him.

    Stopping by from Soli Deo Gloria ~ Many blessings!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Lisa, so nice to meet you through Jen’s place at Soli Deo Gloria. It seems to be a common thread, our men being more patient. Maybe it’s a gender thing. Whatever it is, I am grateful!

  11. kelli- AdventurezInChildRearing

    Beautiful love story! I love it! I too am blessed with a kind and gentle husband who is patient and loving – it’s a special thing indeed!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Kelli. I thought it would be hard to write about my husban for some reason but I am enjoying participating in these letters at Amber’s place.

  12. Amber

    Oh Shelly, mine still needs broken in, too. Me too!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Amber, so glad to know I am in good company. I imagine you spinning around most days with those precious boys and don’t even know how you find the time to write. But selfishly, I am so glad you do!

  13. Joan

    This is an absolutely beautiful story, Shelly. I am touched by your well written words.
    Patience has not been my most virtuous place. But in spite of it all God’s grace has covered my impatient heart. I am still a work in progress.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Joan, I am on the low end when it comes to patience. My kids are even better than I am. And we all know it! It’s a humbling place to be, and like you, I am also a work in progress. So glad you visited. Your words encouraged me today!

  14. keLi

    can so relate to this one – my man comes by his patience naturally, while mine only seems to come through gritted teeth.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Keli, so honored you stopped here. Your writing is amazing beautiful. Loved your letter on patience, truly a masterpiece.

  15. Laura Boggess

    Through shining eyes I whisper “beautiful”–this love you’ve woven together and this patience he waters in you and how it grows. Oh, Shelly. How your words make me swoon.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thank you Laura. Your words bring a smile to my face. Love that word “swoon”! So blessed to have a man so patient. God knew I needed one like that!

  16. Denise J. Hughes

    What a beautiful tribute to your husband’s love, expressed through patience.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Those posts are hard for me to write sometimes Denise, because they are so personal. But, freeing as well. Thanks!

  17. Dina

    Even with the absence of a man during your early years, the good Lord sure seems to have made it up to you in abundance in your husband! Your words reveal the integral role of patience in every marriage, they give me courage and hope to continue to hold out for the natural unfolding of beauty within mine. Oh, and Canada is always a prime vacation destination, in the humble opinion of one who dwells here! 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Dina, would love to know where in Canada you are from. We have lots of family in Ontario. And yes, God filled in the empty places of my life without a father present in those formative, with my husband. A gift I thank Him for almost every day. So glad to meet you.

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