Do you prefer your toilet paper to roll over or under?
Dave and I have been married for 33.5 years. We dated for 3.5 years and were married for 3.5 years before Christine and Jessica were born. During those seven years, we got to know each other and began the process of living together happily—do you like breakfast, are you a morning person or a late-night person, how high do you think we should hang our mirrors, do you mind if I leave the lamp on to read after we have gone to bed, do you want the roll of toilet paper to roll over or under. Then, when Christine and Jessica arrived, our relationship took a different turn. We were no longer focused on what WE wanted. We had two little girls to love, feed, nurture, and train. With twins, we were just happy to HAVE toilet paper—we didn’t really care which way it rolled off the holder! It’s funny how your priorities change.
One day when I was nursing the girls Dave said to me, “All those years I just thought I loved you. Now when I see you with our babies, I know what real love is.” When we were dating and first married, love was about how we made each other feel. When our children were born, we learned that love is giving your life for someone else. Jesus expressed his love for us by giving His life for us.
Less than two years after Christine and Jessica were born, our dear Daniel was born. From early morning to late night (and sometimes in the middle of the night) our home was a state of perpetual motion, and we loved it! Five years later, sweet Anna Joy arrived and added a whole new dimension of tenderness to our home. We have hundreds of hours of videos taken at our home of our children having their first bath, eating their first green bean, rolling over for the first time, learning to walk, singing on the hearth, doing “interpretive dance” while their daddy played the piano and Daniel played the drums, celebrating birthdays and Christmas and every other holiday, learning to ride their bikes, building snowmen, playing basketball in the driveway, swinging on our swing set, building forts, having slumber parties, and on and on and on. Thirty years of joy-filled family living captured on video.
Then, Jessica married Brad and left to begin their own joy-filled family. God has added sweet Braden and Emma to their lives. Christine married David and left to begin their own joy-filled family. God has added precious Taylor, Hunter, and Reagan to their family. Daniel married Lisa and left to begin their own joy-filled family. God has added dear Lillian and Wilson to their family. Last July, Anna married Stephen and left to begin their own joy-filled family.
They are each discovering which way to roll the toilet paper and where to hang the mirrors in their new home. Each couple has invested in their own digital video camera, and has begun capturing their own special memories.
It’s pretty quiet at our house; kind of like it was 33 years ago. Today, I said to Dave, “Now, remind me. Which way do you want the toilet paper to roll off the roll?” He said he didn’t even remember. We decided that those things really don’t matter at all. What does matter is the spiritual heritage we are leaving our children and our grandchildren and all of those precious memories captured with the three video cameras we have worn out in the last 30 years.
Acts 20:24, “What matters most to me is to finish what God started: the job the Master Jesus gave me of letting everyone I meet know all about this incredibly extravagant gererosity of God.”