The Marriage Secret

“An excellent wife is the crown of her husband…”

Proverbs 12:4

If I told you that the secret to a happy marriage is a Dodger dog and garlic fries would you believe me?
This past weekend my wife and celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary. Because my wife took a new job this year we have to wait one year for her to have a week off so our anniversary get away this year was a weekend trip. My wife loves baseball so on our anniversary I took her to watch her favorite team, the Los Angeles Dodgers play the Chicago Cubs. We attended a Dodgers/Cubs game on our honeymoon back in 1983 so thirty-nine years later when the Dodgers were playing the Cubs again on our anniversary we thought there is no better way to celebrate than watching them play in person on our special day.

We received lots of well wishes from family and friends and questions from others asking what is the secret to a happy and long lasting marriage. The obvious answer is always the grace of God, but after that I said, baseball. Baseball is a great metaphor for life and marriage in particular. When we stood at the altar on our wedding day we said to each other before the marriage even began that we would love each other for better or worse, for richer and poorer and in sickness and in health. In other words marriage is a relationship that God created to heighten our highs here on earth and to lessen the lows. Marriage is to be our best reminder that we are not alone. Besides being a relationship, marriage was designed to be a partnership, a team, where each partner has certain strengths they bring to the table.

Marriage reminds me of baseball in so many ways. My favorite reminder is that no matter what the score is there is always hope. I love watching games that end in a walk off win. Baseball is a reminder to never quit as a lot can happen in nine innings. A baseball season is long and no team goes undefeated. You can be doing the best you can and some days you still lose and on other days you can do poorly and by the grace of God you still manage to squeek out a victory.

Like life, baseball isn’t always fair. The best players pop up or ground out or even strike out as much as they get hits. The secret to their success often times is to just keep swinging, and to take each plate experience one at a time. Baseball is made up of hits and misses, walks and strike outs, great plays and errors. Every game is a chance to contribute, to grow and to learn. From home runs to sacrifice flies, individual accolades are secondary to the teams success. The game of baseball teaches you quickly that you win or lose as a team regardless how good or poor any individual might perform. The bottom line is, there is no “I” in “TEAM”.

Yes, loved one, after 39 years of married life I have learned marriage is a lot like baseball. My wife and I are a team, a partnership, a relationship where the goal is always us, we, ours and not I, me, our mine. Just like in baseball, sacrifice is an important aspect of every winning marriage. My wife over the years has taught me much about sacrifice and for that I am truly thankful. The other exciting thing about taking in a Dodger game on our anniversary is my wife didn’t have to cook, and she would tell you that an all beef Dodger hotdog with mustard and relish and onions and a side of garlic fries makes it all worth while.

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the LORD.”

Proverbs 18:22  


Michael Osthimer





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