Yesterday Best Beloved and I celebrated our 54th wedding anniversary. As we sat at our well-used table, enjoying our morning ritual of reading, tea and a rusk, we chatted as only old friends can. We looked back over the years, sometimes with wry laughter but always grateful for the grace that brought two such very different people together across many miles to go on life’s adventure together.

We have concluded there have been seven clear seasons in our marriage so far, and that we have now begun the eighth. Each season has had its own joys and challenges that worked their changes in us, and we have somehow managed to find each other anew in each of them. There often is an expectation that the nature of a coupling, once formally established as a marriage, will not change, but it does. These changes reflect the way every experience matures each mind a little differently, making it easier to grow apart than to adapt.

Like I said, we consider ourselves well and truly launched into this next phase, the season of retired old age, the season of living together 24 hours a day! And now we also begin to truly grasp the reality of what ‘seniors’ joke about, nodding our heads in wry understanding. 😊

The wonderful thing is, that according to some bible scholars, the number 8 is the number of new beginnings, the day God rose from His rest after creation, and represents regeneration and resurrection.

So, at the start of this new season we joyfully declare:

“They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

“Bless the LORD, O my soul…..Who satisfies your mouth with good things,

So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s…..As for man, his days are like grass;

As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him.”

“Bless the LORD, O my soul!” (Psalm 103)