Bottle of Shells

Recently, my husband and I celebrated 13 years of marriage. The day we left for a family vacation with my in-laws just so happened to be the big day. It was uneventful. We spent most of the day driving and it was raining.

However, while we were on our trip, we were able to leave the kids with their grandparents for a few hours while we had a date to celebrate. It was wonderful. We dressed up and went to a seafood restaurant. We reflected on all of the things going on in our lives. Afterwards, we walked the beach together at night looking for shells with our flashlights.

Before our date was over, we went to a souvenir shop/ grocery store and walked around just talking and holding hands. It was late at night, and we were the only customers there. We saw a bin full of tiny shells. You could fill your own magnetic bottle with these shells for $3.99. We took the time to individually pick every shell that went into the bottle, laughing like little kids, enjoying the hunt for the prettiest shells in the bin. It was so nice to savor the quiet moment, just the two of us. Rarely do we ever get to take the time to pay attention to such small, seemingly unimportant details.

Time for us had stopped. We were living in that moment away from the rest of the world and only focused on enjoying each other’s company. Our marriages need time set aside to pay attention to the small details. We need to reflect on each and every pretty, little shell in that big bin of our lives. Our lives are full of these tiny moments. Some of them are chipped, broken, or just very plain. Others are minute in size, but so vibrant in color or unique in shape. We could pass right over them in the sea of the other, more common shells.

Today, I would like to encourage you to dig deep within the memories of your marriage and pull out only your best shells. Write them down with your spouse. You’ll most likely find that you have more than your bottle (or piece of paper) will hold.

Examine also your relationship with God and His Word. Are you quickly filling your bottle, not paying attention to each Word you read, or are you digging for truths that will change your life? Do you treasure them? Do you bottle them up only to throw them in a drawer somewhere, or do you keep them in front of you like that refrigerator magnet as a day to day reminder of His love?

Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

-Andy

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