Thursday, 7 July 2011

My Cup Overflows

A cord of three strands is not quickly broken - Ecc 4:12

A lot happens in 17 years. A lot of growing takes place, many mistakes are made, much forgiveness is given, foundations are solidified, love deepens – and grace abounds.

Except this story begins 19 years ago, when I first set eyes on my future husband at our church’s youth group where he was a leader and I was a helper on my Christmas holiday from university. Yes, it was love at first sight :) But reality then hit home – this man, 8 years my senior, with a faith in God I admired, and eyes I could drown in, would never be interested in me, he was out of my league. So I returned to university and started dating a young man there. Not the best start to a love story…

6 months later, I was back home again from university, single, and Pete was still leading the church youth group. We began dating, 7 weeks later were engaged, and married the following summer, much to the youth group’s delight! Whirlwind romance indeed.

I was a very young Christian when we were married, just over 2 years, and carried a lot of the world’s views into our married life. It never crossed my mind that I might vow to “obey” my husband before God, and as we entered married life my career in a top accountancy firm was uppermost in my list of priorities. I had good intentions of not allowing myself to get sucked into working too many hours. 5 years later I crashed and burned, the pressures of aiming for promotion and the regular 12-hour days I was working taking their toll.

Looking back, that was the best thing that could have happened for our marriage. Resigning my career and losing the company sport’s car were a severe dent to my pride, but the blessing gained from repentance and reordering my priorities to home and family, and more importantly realising my identity is based on who I am in Christ alone, and not the idol of career, has transformed my heart.

The blessing of a child 6 years ago has certainly brought us closer together as a couple, as we recognise our inadequacies at nurturing this little boy’s heart in the ways of the Lord, and lean on Him and His grace for this awesome task. And witnessing the wonderful bond between father and son grow stronger year by year has been a pure joy to behold – I shall never forget the day Harry couldn’t hold back the emotion and wept as he told me how much he loves his dad.

Last week, it struck me that verse 5 in Psalm 23 “You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows” can be a prayer for a wife – that God would anoint the “head” of the wife, the husband, with the Holy Spirit, pour His Spirit into him, grow him in the faith, and then the blessings overflow onto the wife and the whole family. I have seen this to be true in our marriage. These last few years, God has grown Pete’s faith, love and knowledge of Him, and my cup has certainly been overflowing as a result. I pray I never lose sight of this and cry out to God on behalf of my husband daily. For my husband has sacrificed himself so much for me over the years. After I crashed and burned from my career I went through a period of deep struggle with my faith – and for a number of years Pete set aside his work in the church so that he could support me. In the last few years we have both experienced something of a spiritual revival, as God has brought our focus back onto Christ and Him crucified, and by His grace has built for us a much stronger foundation for our faith, and so too, for our marriage.

As we celebrate 17 years of marriage together in a couple of weeks’ time, I am much aware that marriage is a sign and a symbol given by God, placed within the fabric of society, pointing to the glory of Christ, the mystery of Christ and the church. And I am so aware that neither of us have the ability to live up to that calling. Instead, my confidence is in the grace of God. May God’s grace sustain us through our weaknesses, and may He be glorified as a result.


  1. This is magnificent Diana! A true testimony that marriage is a union of sacrifices really, you both make sacrifices for each other and that strengthens your ties to each other, and to God. It's a wonderful thing to read about, thank you so much for sharing a glimpse into yours and Pete's love story. The part about Harry weeping when telling you how much he loves his Dad...oh wow! Priceless! I love you my sweet friend, you are a blessing to me and also such a wonderful example of a Godly wife. I love you Diana!

  2. What a lovely tribute to your beautiful marriage Diana!

    "and eyes I could drown in," Wow! How romantic!!

    Surely, there has got to be NOTHING better on this earth than a marriage blessed by Christ as it is a picture of His own marriage to His beloved Bride.

    Happy Anniversary you two!

    With much love,

    ps. When is your anniversary? We celebrate our 38th next week on July 13th.

  3. Teresa, you are such an encouragement, bless you, my sweet friend! I thank my God that you and I share such a common faith as we walk the different paths he has given to us, and that you strengthen me so much in my faith. Love you!

    Diane - wow - 38 years of marriage...I want to crack a joke about me being 1 year old when you got married, but I shall restrain myself ;) Many congratulations to you and Robert, that is a wonderful testimony to the grace of God. Ours is the 23rd of July. Thank God for this gift of marriage, and I am so thankful for the example you provide to me of a godly, submissive wife. May God richly bless you and Robert♥

  4. Beautiful recount---a real love story! I love it much. Happy anniversary in advance! Grace and love to you!

  5. Thank you Petra, blessings to you and Rick too :)

  6. Diana thanks for sharing this. I believe a Christian marriage is the greatest means that God uses to sanctify us. It brings glory to God when we continue to love and give and many times sacrifice our own desires to serve the one we are in a lifetime covenant with.

    Now more than any time in the history of western culture-we can shine in a world of darkness:with long-loving and fruitful marriages!

  7. Victoria, thanks for this - yes, how true about marriage being the greatest means of sanctification. May God bless you and your husband as you seek to glorify Him.