Keller: 57 years of marriage credit goes to godly wife

Published 12:04 am Saturday, May 23, 2015

Wednesday, I had lunch with a young man that I met a few years ago. He achieved sobriety through the same 12-step program that helped me.

Six months ago, he shared with me that he and his wife had separated. He said it was over and seemed happy about getting a divorce.

When he called to arrange lunch, he said, “I didn’t realize how many people would be affected by my decision.”

When we met he was concerned about his two grown-up children and even more so about his wife of 30 years.

The bottom line is he still loves his wife and has a desire to heal the marriage.

His wife, on the other hand, seems to have moved on with her life and, according to my friend, is tired of an “on again — off again” relationship.

As I drove home from our lunch, I thought that but for the grace of God and a faithful wife, we would not be celebrating our 57th wedding anniversary this Sunday, May 24.

“Fifty-seven years,” I thought. “I’ve been married nine years longer than my daddy lived. (He died at age 48.) My mother was 47 at the time. She lived to be 94.

She never remarried or was ever interested in another man. When asked why, her answer was always the same. “Nobody could ever replace my husband.”

I heard it said that in a healthy marriage when a spouse dies, they will be missed, because the vacuum that’s left can never be filled.

At our age, thinking about death is not morbid, but a reality. Death doesn’t bother me, but Jeanne, as a rule, sidesteps the issue. I know God will give us the grace to accept death as a part of life.

I’ll never forget a few years ago as I washed the dishes, Jeanne came up to me, thanked me and said, “You’ll never know how much I’ve always loved you.”

In the next breath she said, “I hope I die before you.”

“Me too!”

She was shocked at what I answered and I immediately said, “If you want to go first, I want you to be happy.”

All joking aside. Life is for living.

Because Jeanne has been the glue that kept our marriage together, we’ve been blessed with four children, 15 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

As I reflect on 57 years together, I thank God for my godly wife who is the only one that could have put up with me.

If you have any questions, or comments, please write to Get High on Life, P.O. Drawer U, Reserve, LA 70084, call (985) 652-8477, or e-mail: