...my nephew, poised on the brink, within the week you, too, are about to enter The Fellowship of the Rings! Here is some advice, some words of wisdom, from the wellspring of 10 short years:
Marriage is not for the faint of heart. It is for the steadfast and loyal. It is hard work. It is so worth it.
Some of the most exquisite moments of your life, like the moment your eyes will meet hers after you have touched your first child for the first time, will only be known by you, your bride, and God. These moments are so much more precious because of their secret and intimate nature. May you have too many to count and may they begin with that first marital kiss!
Silly, auntie, you may think: you need no advice in how to weather the bliss. We seem born knowing how to handle it! It is those other times that need bolstering. Those dry times, those times when God seems distant and we are in the cold desert alone, those are the times that try us. There is a reason for winter, for ashes, for quiet and loneliness. These are the times that God is hidden from us and He is at work within us.
As a farmer, you know very well that there is a cycle to things: spring, summer, fall, and winter. You are entering into the springtime of your love. Hope and light and warmth are increasing. Your first honeymoon together is about to begin. After the fullness of this cycle of growth, seeds will be planted in the soil of your marriage, and the pruning frosts and a shedding season will begin.
Do not be afraid. Do not ever be afraid. Things are at work in the hushed season of winter. God is whispering in secret to the seeds the summer has sown. Those seeds will grow, but first God requires a dark and a lonely season. When the cold comes, let your vows sustain you. Your promise and your word is good enough to get you through this time without light. Trust that there will be a new springtime on the heels of this.
My only advice is this: trust each other always, even in those rare times when you don't seem to like each other. Her word is good and so is yours. You have promised to love, honor, and cherish. That promise will carry you whenever you forget how to carry each other.
For now, though, my advice is to forget this letter, forget this advice, and enjoy each other. Enjoy your day and the first of many beautiful days together!
Love and much love,