How do Rattlesnakes and Marriage go Together?

It was a magnificent, warm summer day filled with laughter and stories of grand adventures. I didn’t have a care in the world as the day ahead was beckoning me into all it’s alluring glory.

We trotted along on our horses off to “pull bulls” as we call it in my line of work. (For those unfamiliar with our lingo, we were sorting the bulls out of the cows and taking them to their own holding pasture as their job was done for the year.)

The rustling of the summer leaves could barely be heard over of our horses breathing not to mention all of our carrying on!

Right then the laughter was broken as I let out a gasp when my horse jumped straight in the air like he’d been shot! I may or may not have come out of my seat just a little!

Thankfully my horse was paying better attention than me as right below where we had been headed was a coiled up mass of angry rattlesnake. Yikes, so grateful to have good horses!!

Without a word, my then boyfriend of only a few months, calmly stepped off his horse. He quickly slid his honda on his rope down to the end and in one quick swing hit and killed that rattlesnake. Did you hear me on that? One swing!! Hit it smack on top of the head with only one swing. Seriously, he went from boyfriend to superhero in one fell swoop!

Then he topped it all off as he swaggered (that part may just be in mind) on over to the snake, cut the rattles off and handed them to me as gift.

Now maybe some of you who haven’t grown up the same was I have don’t quite understand this gesture. It’s hard to explain but let me tell you as he handed them to me I knew right then and there I was going to marry that man!!

Those of you have followed me on this blog know my past wasn’t always easy. Even then I was still living in an immensely volatile household.

So this whole idea of someone looking out for me was a breath of fresh air in my life.

I was only 16 at the time and people ask me all the time how could I possibly know at such a young age this was the man I was going to marry. I was mocked and scoffed at when I shared it with others. It didn’t deter me though. I’d finally found someone who got me and there was no way I was letting go!

Looking back it’s easier to understand where all these people were coming from with their doubts. Yet to this day I’ve never wavered on that moment. I knew it then and I still know it now!

marriage

Mike and I just celebrated 25 years of marriage. Were they all easy? Heck no! We both brought so much baggage into the our life together and like a couple of onions God has been peeling layers off of us over the years.

We both know marriage isn’t easy. To put it bluntly marriage isn’t for weenies!

 We simply need to decide to invest in and be willing to grow together.

On the day of my wedding, just shy of 19 years old, my dad wrote me the following note. I have it carefully tucked away in a scrapbook. When I’m struggling on a bad day or just need a reminder I pull it out and read his wise words again.

To Laura on your wedding,

As you know, there are two methods of roping. One is to dally, the other is to tie on hard and fast.

With a dally, you can easily slip some slack if needed, or turn loose altogether if you really get into a storm. When tied on hard and fast you are committed, and must put a lot of faith in your horse.

In the early days of the cattle industry, cowboys developed a saying for their most trusted horses, “He’ll do to tie on hard and fast with”.

As time went on, the saying was expanded over the range cow country to include cowboys you could really depend on.

Over the years, I have dealt with thousands of men in my work, many of whom one wanted only to have a dally that could be slipped quickly if necessary. These experiences have made me somewhat a judge of character in men, and I just want to affirm what you already know.

Mike will do to tie on hard and fast with!

Love, Dad

dadnote

I’m sharing this post with several other blogger’s at these Faith Linkups. I encourage you to check them out. If this post resonates with you and feel it would help others please feel free to share. Easy to share buttons below.

~Laura~

Do you see love as a fairytale?

This post may contain affiliate links. You can read the the full disclosure here.

How do you view love? Do you imagine a prince riding up on a white horse and saving you? It’s such a pretty picture but it’s also a fairytale.

Now I’m not against a good fairytale but it’s so important to distinguish between reality and fantasy.

It seems to me we are doing a great disservice in making marriage seem like one big fairytale. Somehow believing every day will be sunshine and roses. Have we become so enthralled in creating the perfect wedding we forget the marriage is where our focus needs to be?

So many of our youth are growing up thinking love is just a feeling. That it comes and goes as easily as changing a hairstyle. Our throw-away society has trickled down into our marriages and families.

Love is a choice. Love is an action.

Love with actions

Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. 1 John 3:18 (NLT)

Even in those moments where we’re not “feeling” it doesn’t mean love isn’t there. It means we have to hang on to what is true and not just an emotion.

How is it possible for our weak human flesh to ever love the way God intended? It’s only possible through the power of the Holy Spirit in us.

love because he loved us

We love each other because He loved us first. 1 John 4:19

We need to grab hold of how deeply God loves us first so we can then turn around and love deeply as well. I find the best way to do this is to thank God daily for how much He loves me. It’s amazing what an attitude of gratitude will do to shift our thinking.

Matthew Henry’s commentary says it like this – “The divine love stamped love upon our souls; may the Lord still and further direct our hearts into the love of God!”

What is love?

Love is patient and kind.

Okay, I know what you’re thinking, easier said than done. I agree! Patience doesn’t come naturally for me and as such kindness can go out the window with it. But, God clearly says this is exactly what love is. So when I’m feeling my fuse getting short I whisper a quick prayer to God. It’s rarely fancy – just an honest plea to help me show patience and kindness even if I’m not feeling it.

Love isn’t rude, arrogant or insists on it’s own way.

Do you have the need to always be right in a disagreement? Some things are worth standing up for, no doubt. My grandma told me early in my marriage, “If it won’t matter in 5 years, let it go. If it will hash it out.” But we can do it without being rude or arrogant. I believe when we always keep love in the front seat of our marriages we can look at both sides through the lens of love.

Love is not irritable or resentful.

How many of us would raise our hands if asked if we’ve ever held a grudge against someone we love? Right there with you. In the past I struggled so much with this and could be very resentful over every offense. So hard on a marriage! It’s so important to ask God for help in releasing past offenses and letting go of irritability and resentment.

Love rejoices with truth!

Love takes no pleasure in hurting others. So often when we’re hurt by those we love, even if inadvertently, our natural reaction is to hurt back. It’s only fair right? Wounding those we love as a way of revenge only perpetuates the cycle. At some point we must choose to stop it. Love delights in the well being of others!

 

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:7

Our marriages are worth fighting for. Our families are worth fighting for. Love is worth fighting for!

I’m sharing this post with several other blogger’s at these Faith Linkups. I encourage you to check them out. If this post resonates with you and feel it would help others please feel free to share. Easy to share buttons below. ~Laura~

 

Celebrate Marriage! – FMF

Five Minute Friday is so much fun for me. No pressure! Simply a word prompt on twitter (#fmfparty) on Thursday night and then write. No over thinking or editing. There is a linkup on Friday at http://katemotaung.com where we can read other’s five minute free write. This week’s prompt is: CELEBRATE


Today my husband and I celebrate 23 years of marriage. Wow! First, I have to say, where did the years go? I still vividly remember meeting him at a neighbor’s branding and the countless miles we spent together horseback.


We got married young and I heard from quite a few people that it would be a huge mistake. I was told repeatedly that young love doesn’t last. We knew it wasn’t a fleeting type of love but one that would see us through.


I’ve learned over these 23 years to celebrate the little moments as much as I do the big milestones. Like the time we were moving cows and he killed a rattlesnake. He cut the rattles off and gave them to me. I know it sounds silly but I still have those rattles.


Also, when we had our first son and were right in the middle of sleepless nights with calving. He was exhausted but still found the energy to snuggle, feed and change our new baby whenever he was inside.


23 years of memories, large and small. Today, I celebrate knowing that love is constantly evolving. We’re not stagnant beings and neither are our relationships. They ebb and flow through life. We grow and find a deeper love that carries us through the valleys in life. I’m so grateful that God has covered our marriage and continues to bless us.