Seeing as we’re coming up on Valentine’s day, I thought I’d give a little shout-out to my bride, Marsha Cole. I often write about the different ministries and event, and even stories of other people, but haven’t really shared about the most important person in my life. I certainly wouldn’t be able to do the things I do without my bride, and wouldn’t be the man I am without her.

Marsha and I originally got together for the wrong reason and we were both caught up in the drug lifestyle. Marsha was just recovering from a miracle when I met her, she was a pancreatic cancer survivor. She had a 6 years old autistic boy named Lance. We got married only a couple weeks after we met. I saw her as a trophy as she was 19 years younger than me. Only 6 short months after we were married we were arrested for running a drug house.

I went back to prison, she lost her boy, and because there was a no contact order between us, she was unaware of the changes happening in my life during the time I had become born again. All she knew is she wasn’t going back to that lifestyle, so I was unaware that she had started a divorce against me.

After sitting 15 months I was released and went to see her and that’s when I found out she was divorcing me. But God had other plans, and within 4 months of our faith community and my Church investing in our relationship, the divorce was called off 2 weeks before it was to become final.

This July will mark our 10 year anniversary, and my wife has blessed me with 2 boys since then: Dylan who is 5 and Isaiah who just turned 3. 

Our getting back together was not easy at first. Marsha had a lot of bitterness towards me for some of the things I put her through. On top of that, by this time we were two completely different people and had to get to know each other all over again. Of course, Marriage, or any kind of close relationship is NEVER easy. Anytime we are dealing with people there will be conflict. 

I just know that these last 8 years in this new life with her have been awesome and am so privileged to have her in my life. Heck, no one else would put up with me! Marsha is the perfect definition of a wife. She’s loving, encouraging, humble, graceful, but definitely keeps me in line and lets me know when I’m messing up. She’s one of the best mothers a man could ask for in their children’s life, and I honor and cherish her. (Enter: “And they lived happily ever after” here!)

God ordained marriage between a man and a woman from the very beginning in the book of Genesis. God also hates divorce. All too often in our society, even within the church, there is so much divorce going on. We have the attitude in marriage that if the individual we married doesn’t meet our expectations, then we just get rid of them and try on something else. We discard them and seek something we will never find, because NO ONE will EVER be the perfect person and meet all your personal expectations. 

Marriage was an institution set up by God, and just as the body of Christ (the Church) is the bride of Jesus, and he sacrificed Himself for her, so too must we sacrifice ourselves for our spouse and make personal sacrifices on behalf of them. This is a hard thing, but until you get that, no marriage will work the way God ordained. Marriage is not a contract or an agreement, it is a COVENANT between 3 of you: Man, woman and God. Covenants are powerful and God ordained, not just some agreement between spouses or a courthouse. 

So, husbands, I challenge you this next year to start making some changes! Yip, I said you! Not expecting your wife to make changes for you, but vice versa. What sacrifices will you make for your bride this year? This mindset radically changed the relationship I had with my wife! She is worthy to be treated with honor and respect – are you giving it to her? You pursued her to get her, are you still pursuing her? Are you putting her above all things?

Happy Valentines Day!

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