In Sickness and In Health – An Ode to My Wife

I woke up at 4 AM this past Sunday morning violently ill.  I’m talking the constantly-out-both-ends type of ill.  As if that weren’t bad enough on its own, Carmen and I were visiting family in Missouri, some 1,170 miles away from our home in Virginia.  And we were scheduled to fly back home on the very day my illness hit.  Talk about miserable.  We ended up making our flights (AirTran was amazing) and getting home after about 12 hours of arduous travel.  I’ll spare you the details of my sickness in order to keep you reading and to avoid bringing on your own brand of illness.  But let’s suffice it to say that I have never been that sick in my entire life, and I’ve been to 10 countries.

So why am I telling you this?  The answer: to brag on my incredible wife.

From 4 AM Sunday morning until 7 PM Monday night, Carmen never left my side.  She was always there, forcing me to drink liquids, begging me not to push myself too hard in the airports, pumping much-needed medicine into my body, and, perhaps most importantly, simply reassuring me with her loving presence.  Carmen is the best nurse in the world, and she doesn’t even have her nursing degree.

Proverbs 31:10-12 describes my wife in detail: “An excellent wife who can find?  She is far more precious than jewels.  The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain.  She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.”

My wife is constantly proving herself to be worth far more than precious jewels.  My heart can always trust in her and it will not be disappointed.  She does me good, whether it be by nursing me back to health when I’m sick or supporting me when I have to make tough decisions or face hard criticism.  And I have no doubt she’ll do these things forever.  I praise God for my amazing wife.

So, young fellas…hold out until you find a Proverbs 31 wife.  I love to see you marry young, but don’t marry someone who will not prove to be “an excellent wife.”  Let me tell you, she will prove her worth.  Look for a godly, loving, caring woman.  Look for someone who will love Jesus more than you.  Look for someone who will be willing to stare down the worst you can possibly present to her and choose to love you anyway.  Look for a great wife, like mine.

Unfortunately, the story is not over.  I’m feeling much better.  But last night, around 3 AM, Carmen woke up sick with the very illness I finally conquered.  So, now it is my turn.  No, there is no such thing as a Proverbs 31 man, I don’t suppose.  I suppose I’ll have to turn to Ephesians 5, Colossians 3, and 1 Peter 3.  It’s my turn to love my wife “as Christ loved the church, and gave himself up for her,” to love her as my own body, to live with her “in an understanding way,” and to gently serve her through her tough time.  Right now, as she sleeps, I know I don’t have a prayer in the world of being as good a caretaker as my beautiful wife, but I’ve been trying and will keep trying.  Please pray for us, that we will heal quickly and that God will show me grace to be the kind of husband that Carmen deserves.

Go find a great wife.  And love that great wife like Jesus loves you.

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