I forsook my vows. I ignored my vows. I desecrated the covenant of holy matrimony.
Now that my wife and I have taken the journey of restoration, we have also expressed our love for each other with an informal renewal of our vows. We each took the time to write new affirmations of love and vows for each other.
One day in the near future, we will have an official renewal of vows ceremony. Until that day comes, I would like to share with you what we've expressed to each other. This expression of love was the final 'dare' in a year-long couple's devotional called, "The Love Dare Day by Day."
Several references in our letters are personal and probably won't make sense, but the point of sharing this is to give hope and to inspire those who wonder if their love can ever be rekindled and healed.
My Letter To Her
I want to boldly proclaim my love for you. I want you to hear me, my heart, my mind, my soul, and my lips say that I am joyfully committed to you for the rest of my life. I have suffered throughout my life with burdens from the past that crippled me and stunted my growth and potential as a man. This was a result of my own immaturity. Thankfully, you have stayed the course. You have graciously received me back after the darkest hour of our lives. You have me now. You have my undying love for you, as well as a love that would be willing to die for you. You are everything I could ever hope or pray for in a wife. I truly thank God for you. In that, I want to make my vows clear to you. These vows will not be broken. I value this covenant commitment with my life. I believe that these words are a binding proclamation of my life, joined in union with your life.
I, [Forgiven Cheater], take you, [My Wife] as a life-long best friend, companion, lover, prayer partner, soul-mate, spouse, teammate, roommate, and number one fan – to have, to hold, to cherish, to admire, to support (in all aspects of that word), to cry with, to pray with, to laugh with, to sing with, to dance with, to cuddle with, to be an intimate ally with, to eat with, to live with, to suffer with, to endure with, to bless with, to freely play with, to absolutely and irrevocably become one with in body, mind, and spirit – no longer two individuals living life side-by-side, but rather as one unified whole person – completed by this fusion of two flawed individuals, living life as one flesh, one desire, and as one purpose, together, even when temporarily physically apart; through sickness and in good health, through good times and in bad times, for rich or for poor, while always holding Christ Jesus as our Lord and Ruler, until death do us part.
Love always and forever,
Her Letter to Me
When you are a little girl you dream about being swept off of your feet.
You dream of the true Cinderella story.
However, as life unfolds you quickly learn that Cinderella is just a fairly tale.
That you are not Cinderella and the chances of meeting a prince were not possible.
I realize that my story is much deeper and much more complicated.
It seems to relate more to the tale of Finding Nemo.
It started with a human who was attempting to be funny by making fish lips.
From that moment I desired to be near you!
From that moment I knew that you were someone that I wanted to spend my life with.
I was swept away and fell in love in that instant connection.
Little did I know that I would love you so deeply, so intensely, so quickly.
I never expected to have my heart consumed.
The more I got to know you, it became clear that you were not just a normal guy.
You were much more.
You were complicated and raw.
You displayed compassion and love for others.
You had a real relationship with God and you made me want something more.
It wasn’t until I met you, that I realized that kind of relationship was even possible.
You made me dig deeper.
You made me strive to be a better person, one with integrity and love.
I lived in such a dark place as a child and you opened it up and shined light on it.
You gave me hope.
You gave me something to strive for.
You helped me see beyond myself and realize that so much more was possible.
That dreams do come true.
They just aren’t always the way you envision them.
Life has not been a fairy tale.
It has been an adventure.
One with daring twists and complicated plots.
I have had some of the most joyous moments in my life with you.
Many of my first were with you.
My most precious memories include you.
I would not trade anything for my experiences with you.
You allowed me to be a mother.
Something that I wouldn’t trade for anything else in the world!
The joy of unconditional love- a love like no other.
That is one of my most prized memories in this life.
That experience alone has made me grow and I couldn’t have done that without you.
Even cartoons experience heartache and loss.
They go through experiences that tear them apart, leave them hopeless, and heart broken.
I often wish that life didn’t need to include pain or suffering.
That we could learn valuable lessons a different way.
I can’t change those experiences.
I only hope to grow through them.
I promise, just like I did 21 years ago… To take you for better, or for worse; for rich or for poor, in sickness and in health, as long as we both live.
I promise to be your love, your best friend, your accomplice, your soul mate, your partner, your intimate ally, your side kick, your number one fan, your amigo, your secret admirer, your confidant, your secretary, your girl- forever…
I am yours and always have been yours. You have my heart, my life, my soul. You make my life complete. I am no longer in this life alone. I have you by my side. Just as God said, “the two shall become one.” This is my promise and covenant with you.
I am one with you!
I love you,