Levin and Kitty on the ice: I too had an early awkward meeting with my bride upon the ice, where she appeared to me radiant, and I to her somewhat of an irritant. I too envisioned a more positive image of myself upon her thoughts. And I too misread the cues, and was subsequently refused my advances.

For I was the prophet without virtue having having been struck the earliest…

"You must understand," said he, "it's not love.  I've been in
love, but it's not that.  It's not my feeling, but a sort of
force outside me has taken possession of me.  I went away, you
see, because I made up my mind that it could never be, you
understand, as a happiness that does not come on earth; but I've
struggled with myself, I see there's no living without it.  And
it must be settled."

Yet she, the bright angel of my life, was ultimately brought to me with a fresh view and a warm receptive smile, and a sweet life to follow. I remember her sparkling and accepting smile in the restaurant on the first date that I knew she really liked being with me. I like Levin was laid hold of katalambano. Two times in my life this has happenned: once by God for Himself and then for Ginny.

We began with black & white commitment and colorful love. We began with black & white rules for childrearing and colorful laughter. There were spankings on occasion but lots of singing and dancing. We started strict with our sons and grew more lax with our baby girl. It was all good and I wouldn’t change the trend: just a decision or two. I still haven’t learned some behaviors that I wish I had learned then. I still hope to learn patience and solitude and fasting and prayer and more energy in the evenings.

We had some tough fights but never considered divorce. Our threats have always stopped when we said… “we need to see a marriage counselor.” Then one time we did for a few meetings and it really helped.  Our counselor taught us about our “dance.” She told us that we needed to learn to change the step, and that if one of us changed, that the other would have to follow.

But it comes down to a grateful heart. To appreciating my gifts and not spending time in envy and jealously. Kind words to my wife come from a thankful heart, content with the great supply that comes to me from Jesus.