Gratitude & Growth – Nine Years Together

Michael and I just had our ninth anniversary yesterday. In a way, it feels like time has flown by. In another, it’s like we’ve been together for longer.

I am so incredibly honoured and blessed to be married to Michael Van Pelt. I praise the Lord for the man He gave me to marry. Though Michael and I are different in many ways, I find most times that our different personalities complement each other well.

I’m a big-picture, dreamer type thinker. I often visualize what life will be like many years down the road, how the ministry will grow, and the things Michael and I will do together.

Michael is the details and numbers type. He likes logical, practical things that he can do now. He is a consistent, dependable person.

I thrive on variety. I like to eat different flavoured meals, explore new places, move furniture in the house, and do my work in more project-based ways as to keep everything fresh.

Michael could eat the same type of food for years. He’s lived in the same town his whole life and worked at the same job since high school, and still loves it.

He’s my “Steady Eddie” and I’m his “spice to life.”

Starting the ministry has really made these personality traits stand out more as we’ve worked on creating products together and he’s helped me with the overall practical functions of the business side of things. I’ve gained greater respect for him as I’ve come to appreciate his leadership and counsel with my work and running his own business. 

I’ve also gained greater respect for him in our marriage as well. He’s so patient with me. I have a tendency to rush into things without weighing out the pros and cons. If I think I need it, then I go for it. However, Michael will gently and honestly tell me no when he needs to, and explains why. There have been many times I’ve appreciated that afterwards. Then when he agrees with something I’ve presented to him, he cheers me on the whole way! I’m learning to trust his wisdom, counsel, and leadership.

Though we’ve been together for nine years, I still feel in ways that we’re building the foundation of our marriage. There’s always something new to learn about him because we’re constantly growing. I’ve taken more intentional time this year to listen to what he enjoys, as this changes over time. We dream together more as we get to know each other on a deeper level.

Michael has his weaknesses like any other human, but I continue to grow in my love and respect for him with each passing year. The Lord has chipped away at my independent mindset, and has gently and graciously taught me the importance of trust on Him and Michael. I need both of their guidance to help me through life. By doing this, I actually feel stronger because it has allowed me to learn.

If I did everything my way and pursued every “great idea” I’ve had, I’d be broke and would probably have hurt people along the way. By choosing to be dependent on the Lord and Michael for their wisdom and counsel, they’ve helped me to strengthen my faith, wait patiently, and make better choices.

My most cherished thing Michael and I started to do is pray together. I get a glimpse of Michael’s deeper heart and thoughts through his prayers. I hear his care and compassion for others. I listen to him consistently pray for people through their difficult times. Most of all, I appreciate that he puts the Lord first in his life, our marriage, and his work. He has a huge responsibility to lead our family and his employees. But he never does it alone.

Because we’ve spent this time together, we’ve also been able to see where God has answered our prayers more clearly and rejoice greatly when He does.

Every marriage has its strengths and weaknesses. Michael and I certainly aren’t perfect. We have our our struggles, but we’ve humbled ourselves and learned to work through them with love and grace.

I’m grateful for the nine years we’ve had so far and look forward to growing with him more this year.

Happy Anniversary Michael! Thank you for being the amazing husband you are. I love you and respect you more with each year God graciously gives us together.

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