This evening our church celebrated the golden wedding anniversary of two of our parishioners. It was a wonderful service which talked of love and hope and joy. I found it rather refreshing to be singing something other than Christmas carols. However the whole concept of a GOLDEN WEDDING ANNIVERSARY was something which I found both encouraging and the tiniest bit depressing. This is something so very rare in a society where one inthree marriages end in divorce which is very sad. On a more personal note it's something I'm rather assuming I will never do. I'm thirty and currently single. For me to reach such a milestone would necessitate me finding a life partner within the next few years AND surviving to beyond the age of eighty. Of course it also requires me finding a life partner of equal longevity (or a slightly younger man with a few spare years I suppose!). Some big challenge. However it's not about the length of time but about the devotion. I admire Ellie and Percy, without ending, for the fact that they have devoted themselves to loving someone and loving God for all that time. Through my life and my words I try to show God's love to those around me. Yet I think there is no better way to evidence God's love than through a long marriage which has ridden the waves of trouble and surfed the froth of joy. I hope to partake in that some day but for now, to all those of you who are married, can I urge you to see it as a sign of God's love to those aroudn you not of lovey-dovey cuteness but of an enduring through-it-all love which is what God grants to us all.