Happy Birthday, Candace…

On this day, in the year of our LORD 1978, my precious wife was born to C. Samuel and Rhonda Gale Daniels in a suburb of Dallas. Yes… today my Candace turns 28 years of age, and this marks the tenth birthday we have spent together – first as a couple, then as man and wife.

I remember the first one… with the assistance of my mother and siblings, I threw her a surprise birthday at my parents` house before taking her out for dinner at the China Pearl, a movie at the Northloop, and a late evening spent at Brothers coffeehouse. So much has changed since those seeming golden-toned days.

Candace has lived in tumultuous times. Her life has been an arduous one, more difficult than almost any other of which I am familiar. Without indulging in the various details, I can say that she has been graced to overcome the sort of sufferings and torments that have bent others like a reed in the wind.

If those that now know her well were made entirely aware of what she has overcome in her twenty-odd years, they might marvel that she was able to turn out even somewhat well-adjusted, let alone mature into the magnificent woman that she is today.

Candace has grown from a tender and passionate young woman, strong beyond her years – to a serene matriarch, virtuous in her care of our children; as well as a vigorous help-mate to her husband, obliging to me in every capacity that bespeaks a deep well of loving-kindness. She makes me want to be a better husband to her, and a better father to our children – and, to me, exemplifies so much of the woman described in the 31st chapter of Proverbs.

Every so often, I will allow my imagination to dance after itself in contemplation of what might have been, had I known my beloved in our respective youths – that I might have been some “island of calm” amidst her sea of troubles. That we could have known each other even then as “other selves” in innocent and child-like affection.

O, that I could have been there for her… to stand before her adversaries and wield a wrathful vengeance against her tormentors – to be then what I am now: her confidant, her protector, and her closest companion.

All the same, it is precisely that she endured those things alone that contributed to the person she is now – and I would not have it any other way.

Verily I do not revel in her past trials, yet I do glory in how the LORD overcame the afflictions of vile and unrighteous minions – to bring forth so lovely a gem out of the fires of pain and suffering.

I know that I carry on and on but, even so, I know I can only reveal a vague impression of her through my ham-fisted ramblings – but today I celebrate the day of her birth, and thank the LORD for granting me so rare a wife as Candace.

Daily do I thank the LORD for her, and on this day especially.

Happy birthday my dearest love, and may we be granted many more of the sweet days we have enjoyed together…

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