Marriage, One Word Yes, Relationship

One Word: Yes


Has one word ever changed the course of your life? I’ve been thinking about one word that changed my life forever, for the better.

Eighteen years ago, I said, “Yes,” in answer to a question. I was in my late twenties, single and wishing for a change in my “status.”

When I met my husband on a ski trip, I had no idea the changes God had in mind for me. As our relationship grew from friends to in-love, I found myself saying “No” to some activities so I could say yes to our long-distance relationship.

One night in early October, he asked me to dress up, because we were eating somewhere special. Unexpected circumstances delayed the three hour drive from his city to mine by a couple hours. Instead of a fancy dinner, we shared a starlit walk and chocolate silk pie at a friend’s house.

When he lowered to one knee, and asked me to be his forever, I only needed one word to answer the hopeful expectation in his eyes.



Eighteen years after that “one-word” changing evening, we’re still crazy-in-love. I have no regrets. We’ve been through a lot, he and I. Life’s joys and sorrows have knit our hearts together.

. . . Many moves, compliments of Uncle Sam and the US Air Force.

Moving Boxes copy

. . . Learning to die to ourselves to serve and love sacrificially (he’s much better at this than I am).

. . . The heartache of infertility.

. . . The joys and frustrations of loving and training up the two gifts we call sons.

. . . Shoring each other up through health issues.

His quiet presence by my side each morning and through the days.



God used that one word to change who I am, to grow depth in me that could never have come from a career in teaching. As much as I loved my students.


One word that revealed to me a clear picture of what God’s love looks like when it’s lived out through the smiles and tears of life.


What about you? How has one word or one simple decision changed your life in some way? If you’re married, how did you and your spouse meet?

10 thoughts on “One Word: Yes”

  1. My word is duty.

    I realized at some point that we really have no rights – only responsibilities to the people and creatures with whom we share God’s creation. We have a responsibility to protect the weak and the innocent, no matter what the cost.

    We have a responsibility to live up to the promises we make – even if our dreams have to die to them.

    It was immensely liberating, because I was no longer concerned with ‘my’ accomplishments and ‘my’ dreams. They became as sea-foam on the rolling waves – pretty, but ultimately transitory.

    And how’d I meet my wife? On a Catholic singles website. She was in Indiana, I was in Texas at the time. I was going to travel to meet her but nearly cut off my arm with a piece of woodworking machinery, so she came to Texas. I proposed within a couple of hours of meeting her, and she accepted. We were married one year later, to the day.

    And a year after that we were divorced.

    And another year passed, and we were remarried, in a helicopter over the Las Vegas Strip. At night. By a cheerful priest.

    Yes, we celebrate both anniversaries.

    (BTW…my mother-in law died today, quite peacefully…she will be missed. It’s as if a whole range of mountains has suddenly vanished from my view.)


    1. It sounds like you’re living out the fine art of putting others first, Andrew. Your description of “duty” encompasses much more than the first impression. I like it. 🙂

      I like the story of you and your wife’s meeting and beyond. It’s a testament to the two of you for figuring out how to make your marriage work. And a helicopter over the Strip? Wow! It must have been beautiful. We spent eight years in Las Vegas, and I never took a helicopter ride.

      Thank you for the update on your mother-in-law. I’m glad she went peacefully, but I’m truly sorry for your loss. Your family will continue to be in my prayers.


  2. John and I met at a softball game. Up until then, I hated softball.
    Like, why sweat?

    Now, he makes me smile everyday and giggle when I’m not supposed to. He’s my champion and my knight. I couldn’t survive without him.


  3. He claims I picked him up in a bar! Well, it was a fancy bar, but he was invited by his good friend Brad. I happened to be there too. That was the beginning. A coupla weeks later he asked me to marry him and I said yes. Three kids and many challenges later (and 47 years)we are more in love than ever. Best tip ~ we learned how to laugh together and laugh a lot!


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