Twenty five years ago I said “I do”. My vows were simple, but meaningful. Before God, family, and friends, I committed to love and honor Leon Roat for the rest of my life. I knew deep in my heart that God had chosen Leon for me. Since then, we’ve had some difficult times, but what has made a difference in our marriage is the fact that we both knew from our first date that God was at the center of our lives and relationship.
If I were to identify the Christian values at the center of our relationship, they would be prayer and obedience to God’s voice. Case in point: For our 25th anniversary celebration, Leon and I decided to take the family to Greece for a special family trip. On every trip I’ve taken, there have been unexpected twists. On this trip it happened before we even left for the airport. The day before our trip, I was sitting at my computer checking our flight times and checking in our tickets. For some reason, I couldn’t check in my youngest, Jessica. The next morning, the day of the trip, I called the airline. It was then that I realized Jessica had an expired passport. The airline said that they would not let her fly unless she had a renewed passport. I felt a knot in my stomach form. How could I forget to check her passport? Worst case scenario, Jessica and I would have to stay behind and get her passport renewed. But this could take several days and our trip would be ruined.
We all prayed and allowed God to work out the situation. And our Heavenly Father came through in a big way.
As it turned out my husband Leon stayed behind with Jessica. I had to notarize a form in order to give Leon permission to get Jessica’s passport. My two older kids and I flew to Greece. Leon was able to get the passport situation cleared up in an afternoon and then join us 24 hours later. Phew!
Once again, Leon and I felt that God made it happen for us. Despite the mistake of not checking the passport requirements, Jessica was able to join us. No trip would be complete without a little drama.
Another quality that has kept our relationship thriving is the company we keep. Leon and I have been fortunate to have a great support system of wonderful friends and family. From the beginning, we went to a pre-marriage class and learned about the impact marriage would have on our lives. There is no substitute for this type of marriage preparation. Staying accountable and sharing struggles with mentors has also helped our marriage thrive. We grow closer to each other when we have people around us that pray and encourage. The first thing we did when the passport issue came up was reach out to our friends and ask them to pray. Reaching out in this manner had a calming effect and allowed the Lord to help us see the solution with clarity.
God has truly blessed our marriage and family. I'm looking forward to 25 more years of marriage with my hunny!