21 Reasons Why I've Been Married 21 Years

I grew up never wanting to be married. I had witnessd so many broken lives between the "adults" around me that I did not want to go through that as an adult. My experience was that when it came down to it the adults were very selfish humans who really didn't care about anything or anyone than themselves. Sure at times they seemed to care but it didn't last long. I never wanted any of my kids to experience that. So how have I been married 21 years today?

Against all common sense my best friend in college asked me to marry him. I said YES because that meant that we could always be together. For some reason I felt so alive and loved and never wanted to be apart from him. Little did I know it wasn't my doing or by my strength but through the strength of Christ that this union would take place. We were meant to be helpmates and we have done it for 21 married years. We aren't perfect (well he is) and here are the top 21 reason why we are still together. They aren't in any particular order. As of matter of fact, the last one is the #1 reason but it is so long I'm saving it for last. 

Oh and thanks to Facebook for announcing our marriage today! LOL

Top 21 Reasons Why I've Been Married 21 Years

  1. I have my own favorite music, he has his. 
  2. I have my own favorite side of the bed, he has his.
  3. I have my own hobbies, he has his.
  4. I have my own favorite movies, he has his.
  5. We have always gone to church together as a family.
  6. We do not exercise together.
  7. We do not play the same games.
  8. I wear the perfume he buys me and I say YES every time he ask, "will you marry me" which he does all the time.
  9. He does a million things which bug me even though I really don't care.
  10. I do a million things which bug him (I'm sure of it even if he tells me it isn't so)
  11. He works hard at everything he does to provide for his family (even if he doesn't look like he is working)
  12. He is the best dad ever! He loves his daughters and does everything he can to love them.
  13. We love finding new, off the wall places and things to eat.
  14. He forgives me when I fail at my wife duties (even though he tells me I never fail)
  15. I would forgive him if he ever failed at his husband duties.
  16. He lets me care for him which includes most everything inside our home. This includes cooking for him, ironing his clothes, washing clothes and so on! lol I love doing all of this and because he lets me I get to do what I care for him and our family.
  17. We gladly fulfill our husband and wife duties in bed. :ahem:
  18. I let him go off on guy trips when he needs them.
  19. He let me go off on crazy stamping and scrapbooking trips when I needed them.
  20. He will go see a sappy Nicholas Spark movie with me while I sit and cry throughout the entire movie. I in turn will go see a Sci-Fi movie with him so that I can enjoy movie popcorn.
  21. His sermon that he preached at our daughter's wedding this weekend sums up this entire list and why we are together after 21 years of marriage. I will share it in just a moment but I want everyone to know that you DO NOT need to do everything together as a couple to be together for 21 years. We both are individuals with individual likes, passions, desires and dreams. A marriage becomes a WE and not just an I. In the end WE share things that are the most important which are:
  • the Love of Christ, 
  • the love of family,
  • the love of each other to make sure we do important things together which only husband and wife should be doing together, in the bedroom.
Here is his sermon. If you have any questions please feel free to ask in the comments. I'd love to hear them. I'd love to know your thoughts and questions, desires and struggles of marriage. His sermon isn't just'll find that out as you read the below message.

The Marriage of Jon and Anna
August 31, 2014
Ephesians 5:22-33

For a long time, it seemed to me that the mission of Higher Things was to assist parents, congregations, and pastors in cultivating, encouraging, and promoting a distinctively Lutheran identity among their youth and young adults, and to find a girl for Jon Kohlmeier. But, as difficult as it is to admit, we have to acknowledge that Jon and Anna are not here today to be united in holy marriage because of the hard work and effort of the staff of Higher Things. They are here to be joined together in marriage because...Jesus. Jon and Anna are being married today because Yahweh loves Israel like a bride. They are here today because of Jesus who has made the church His holy bride. They are here because of Cana, where Jesus showed to His disciples that He came to be the bridegroom of God's people. They are here today because of Good Friday on which the New Adam's bride, the church, was born from His side in water and blood. Jon and Anna are here today because their Father in heaven has given to them the gift of one another. And in their marriage, He once again gives the world this gift: a picture of Jesus Christ and His bride, the church, for whom He gave everything, to wash her and make her spotless and perfect in His sight. It is a holy union held together by Jesus' love for His church, and by the forgiveness of sins which makes it all possible in the first place.

So, dear daughter Anna, through meeting Jon at Higher Things and Skyping as friends for several years, when your mother and I thought you were doing your homework, you are here today because your heavenly Father is giving you as a gift to Jon. You are to look to him like the church looks to Jesus. And how is that? The church looks to Jesus to be her Savior and forgive her sins. We expect that from Jesus. And so you expect that from Jon. Submitting to Jon isn't about making him a sandwich whenever he demands one, even if he does have superuser privileges. Submitting as St. Paul uses the word means that there is no one else in the whole world you should go to to take care of you, protect you, love you, forgive you, cherish you, and put you above everything else. Expect that from Jon. You see, that is WHY you are a gift to him. Jon needs to learn to love someone beside himself, someone more than himself. Your calling as a wife is to be someone Jon needs to love and forgive. Your being Jon's wife is one of the ways the Lord will teach him to die to himself every day and to love and forgive you as Christ loves and forgives all of us. The church rejoices and is happy to be served by Jesus and to let him be her Savior from sin, death and the devil. So there you go, Anna: That's your wifely vocation: to enjoy being served by Jon with love and forgiveness just like when you come to church and rejoice in Jesus' forgiveness!

And you, Jon, are the Lord's gift to Anna. For you are to love her as Jesus loves His church. He died for His church. He washed His church at the font. You and Anna and all of His church have no spots or wrinkles or stains or blemishes in God's eyes. So you are a gift to Anna to remind her of that. In your forgiving her, not counting her faults against her; in your seeing not a single spot, wrinkle, or blemish in her, you are at once both reminding her of Christ's love for her and all sinners as well as confessing that's what you believe too. In your absolute refusal to ever see her mistakes, to be upset by her shortcomings, to be mad at her for anything she does, you'll be testifying that's exactly how Jesus deals with His bride, the church. In your putting her up on a pedestal as the most important person in your life under the Lord Himself, you are showing what care Christ has for His bride. And just as it was not good for Adam to be alone, so Eve was made as a companion for him, so Anna is given to you as your companion. And this is WHY you are a gift to her. Because when she sins, messes up, makes mistakes, and fails, YOU are the one person in her whole life she will count upon to treat her not as if she messed up or is imperfect but as perfect and holy. No sins. No blemishes. No spots, wrinkles, warts, zits, or anything like that. You are her gift from the Lord Himself.

Now, marriage is not easy. It's always a dangerous proposition when two sinners get together to share their lives. Everything we've said so far sounds really good...on the day of your wedding. But give life some time. You'll see. When the devil, the world, your sinful nature...and to meddle with your happiness as husband and wife, then know this: it is the very thing that marriage pictures that will save you. Jesus loves His church. He gave His life for her. For you. He loves her. He loves you. He forgives her. He forgives you. Because I know you, Jon. And I know you, Anna. And therefore I know that your marriage is going to have abundant opportunities to learn what forgiveness is all about. The preparation for your marriage began a long time before we were trying to figure out where to have the reception. Long before the ring was picked out. It began on the days when you were both baptized and clothed with Christ. That very washing that St. Paul talks about in which every spot, wrinkle, blemish and stain of sin was removed by your Savior. And you have grown up hearing the blessed Good News that yours sins are forgiven because of Jesus Christ and Him crucified and risen. And you have eaten at the wedding feast of His body and blood. And it is a great comfort to know that you have a church here where that same Jesus will be preached and served to you every week. Because here from this pulpit and at this altar, your sins will be forgiven. Here, everything you do to show that you are still sinners as husband and wife will be covered up and forgiven. And that forgiveness doesn't stop here and just with each of you. It's that very forgiveness of Jesus that you will pass on to Anna, Jon, in covering up her faults. It's that very forgiveness of Jesus, Anna, that you will give to Jon when he is not the husband he is vowing to be today. It's forgiveness not just for Jon and Anna but for all of you, too. In your lives and marriages, that same Bridegroom who has made Jon and Anna a part of His bride, the church, has made you His bride as well.

So go now and be united in marriage, Jon and Anna. Live your lives in Christ. He has arranged the marriage. He has prepared the bride. He has given Himself for her. She is spotless and holy. But, of course I'm talking about Jesus and the church. But that's what we see here pictured in the union of Jon and Anna. Have a blessed and joyous life together in Him who has made you perfect by His death and resurrection, His washing and His Supper. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.


  1. The reasons you have been married for 21 years are nearly identical to the reasons we've been married for 21 years! It took awhile, but we had to find balance and learn to forgive each other's faults instead of pointing them out to each other. Pastor's wedding sermon was very good as well - they always are!

  2. Happy Anniversary to Susan & Mark! I am so glad that Pete and I have you two as an example of how to live & love as a married couple. After 2 failed marriages I didn't think I would ever marry again but God had other plans. We have been married for 17 years and I know it's through the love and grace of Christ that we are bound, not just the marriage license. Have a blessed day!

  3. Beautiful, Susan! Thanks for Sharing!!

  4. Hi Susie - thanks for sharing the wedding sermon on your blog. I think it was a wonderful explanation of how marriage is designed by Christ and how a marriage is designed to work. This isn't the picture our world paints but it is a picture of God's design and it's why we've been married for 25 years!



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