One thing I have never been accused of is marrying for money. When I married my husband I was a hostess at the Olive Garden and he was working for a nutrition company selling breast cream to menopausal woman. It was an office job in Dallas. I think he started making $10 an hour stuffing envelopes, then moved up to answering phones and placing orders. After 6 years of dedication he eventually was on salary doing graphic design for their publications and had a nice office with a window in a great part of town. One day the owner of the company approached him with a proposition to be promoted even further. They wanted to send him to school and promised all kinds of benefits and rewards. Even though J didn't really find fulfillment in his job the offer was quite enticing.
That same day the pastor at the church we have been going to for our whole marriage also met with him and offered him a full time paid position as associate pastor. Up until this point J had been leading worship voluntarily. It was a big decision, one that would change the course of our lives forever. The hardest part was that as much as we wanted someone to just tell us which door to walk through it was something we had to decide on our own.
After much prayer and consideration J chose to leave the nutrition company to become a pastor at our church. That was about 5 years ago. There may be some that think that that was an unwise decision, and some might say we were foolish for getting married so young in the first place before we had careers or a decent income. People could also say that we started having children before we could really afford to offer them the cushy life that would be expected of the classic American family. That's fine, I understand where "those people" are coming from, but if you know the relationship and the depth of the love that is between me and my husband, my children, and my church family then you know that I have no regrets.
When I first met J one his favorite bands was Better Than Ezra, so naturally I started listening to them. I love the line in one of their songs that says:
"Ramen noodles at 4:30 in the morning,
when we barely could survive, I was never more alive"
I am not trying to imply that we can all just live on love and never have any worries. There is something to be said about the power of the almighty dollar and the implications that the lack or abundance of can have on a marriage. However, if there is one thing I have learned over the past 9 years it is that money isn't everything. If it was our relationship would have dissolved a long time ago. It is often the times when you have the least in terms of possessions that can be the richest moments in your life if you allow it.