Monday, October 24, 2016

Love For A Lifetime

We had a family celebration this weekend. My big sister Burneta and her husband Gene celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary! It was a delightful day filled with friends and family all around them, sharing memories and updates on their lives. The daughters created a beautiful display of photos in the shape of 60 and they had Burneta's wedding dress and vail there with the photo album of wedding pictures. It was so fun to look through the photos and see the love in the young couple's eyes. They are so blessed; even though their lives have held many difficult challenges and sorrow, along with the joys and laughter; they have endured together.

They have four adult children who have made them so proud, along with their spouses, and four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren that they adore. They are amazed by the talents of their family members and just glow whenever they talk about them. There are also very special grand-horses, grand-dogs, and grand-cats that complete the family circle.

Though I don't remember Gene and Burneta's courting days, I've been told that I nearly ruined the relationship. Whenever Gene came to visit, I cried so loud, it was nearly impossible for anyone else to hear a conversation. But it is clear that Gene was smitten with true love because he kept coming back. He wisely took her out whenever possible.

Their child-raising years went by in a flurry of activity. With a little girl, twin boys, and another little girl, the days were filled with washing laundry, cleaning house, cooking, bathing, gardening, canning, and all the work of an Iowa farm. Add to that a job in the insurance office that eventually became full-time for them both. There were piano lessons and lots of music and dedication to the United Methodist Church in Albion. There were ball games and recitals and farm work to do. And aging parents to care for and to love.

I haven't done their life justice in these few paragraphs and there is still more to come! It has been a joy watching these two master life for 60 years together. They are an inspiration to other couples and a wonderful example of living life for a lifetime. Congratulations Gene and Burneta! We all love you!

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails" (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a NIV).

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