Beautiful Day

Thursday, August 23, 2012


In our culture, twenty-one is somewhat looked upon as an age of maturity.  Though a 21st anniversary is not necessarily thought of as a milestone, I am coming to think of these years as a sort of maturing.  I don't think I will ever forget that John Piper, in "This Momentary Marriage," (a book well worth reading!) says, to paraphrase, that one doesn't know much of anything about marriage the first 25 years.  I once heard a sweet older couple in a church we were part of (who had been married 60 years) echo the same thing.  Yes, I think my Tender Warrior and I will both admit we have a lot of growing and maturing ahead of us.  And isn't that the beauty of it?

Warrior was traveling during the week, but returned home just in time for celebrating.  Special occasions afford me great bursts of creativity in the kitchen.  This was my companion cookbook for the day, "Barefoot in Paris:  Easy French Food You Can Make at Home."

Barefoot in Paris: Easy French Food You Can Make at HomeYou see, I recently watched livestream videos of "The Reformation of Food and Family" conference.  In case you can't tell, we have some people who are passionate about food here.  We would have loved to attend the conference in person, but it wasn't possible.  We very much enjoyed the messages we did hear.  And I was especially appreciative of the inspiration of Chef Francis Foucachon, a native French chef, in his messages concerning what we can learn from the French about food.  One of the greatest things I took away from that was the concept that the whole meal is an experience and not simply a fueling station; not merely something on the "to-do" list to be hurried through to get to the next thing (a distinctly American notion).  Having been to France and a few other European countries, I can attest that this is true.  You do not go to a restaurant that is full and wait for a table to open up.  Meals are very social and slow; not something gobbled down and generally not an experience where the pop music and air conditioning are designed to get you to eat and move on so someone else can have your spot.  Having made a little French detour on our way back from the Black Forest in Germany, we enjoyed one of those French restaurant "experiences" where the meal is brought out a course at a time over a long course of time!  We really liked it, but we left our gracious hosts/dearest friends a little worried returning so late with their car! (This was in the days before cell phones).

In the past I have been a bit timid when it comes to French cooking.  It always seemed kind of overwhelming in time and ingredients.  But I decided to revisit it.  And with the help of Ina Garten's book, it has been both manageable and enjoyable.  An anniversary is an especially good time to spend a little extra thought in beauty surrounding a meal.

I did not get  any pictures of the chocolate-orange mousse though.  I had wanted to make Creme  Brulee, but my kitchen torch didn't arrive in time.  I am eager to try that one out!
A couple of years ago, I watched a movie that was recommended by someone I respect. 

Babette's Feast

It was primarily recommended because of the concept of beauty surrounding a meal and how a meal brought a community together.  Being a foreign film, it was kind of different as far as film goes.  But the highlight was certainly watching Babette prepare an incredible gourmet meal and the lengths to which she went to prepare it.

We finished our days of celebrating together with some family music time and then a special horseback trail ride.  They were lovely days spent together and I am so grateful.  I am truly grateful for such a dear husband to walk this life with.  I am thankful to my Lord for allowing me the privilege of marriage to this man and how we are both challenged and stretched beyond the natural inclinations toward our self.  I love every year of this journey together, even with its struggles.  And each year I find I truly want more of the mystery of all that God designed and intended marriage to be.  Sometimes it feels that we have only scratched the surface thus far.

My friend, Lisa, has written an incredibly encouraging message, "A Deeper Desire," for women in marriage over here.  These are lessons I have learned as well (and continue to).  I encourage you to read it with an open heart.  You really must!

"But if we set our face to make of marriage mainly what God designed it to be, no sorrows and no calamities can stand in our way. Every one of them will be, not an obstacle to success, but a way to succeed.    The beauty of the covenant-keeping love betwen Christ and his church shines brightest when nothing but Christ can sustain it."
"And may the marriage-watching world be captivated by the covenant-keeping love of Christ."
~John Piper, "This Momentary Marriage"


  1. What a beautiful post! I loved reading it. And I have loved watching your marriage and your family grow. Thank you for sharing! (Someone told me about that movie but I had forgotten all about it. I've heard good things from several places.)

  2. Happy 21st Anniversary! (slightly belated :)Thank you for sharing a little of it with us - a real blessing!
    (We'll be celebrating our 20th next week...)

    I also deeply appreciated Babette's Feast, one of the few movies we own. Such a touching story of love and grace.

    Your own love feast sounded (and looked!)delicious!



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