“There is perfection in this man.” my mind whispers.

It is nearly three o’clock in the morning, and I’ve just returned to my warm bed after helping my groggy son find his beloved stuffed monkey. It had slipped beneath his comforter. With that crisis averted, I kissed his soft cheek and headed back to my room.

Normally, I would be asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. But this time I gently nudge my sleeping husband until he rolls onto his back, and I curl up with my head on his chest. My favorite place in the world. My home. And as peace fills my spirit, I have one thought:

There is perfection in this man.

Photo by Joy Prouty

There is also humanity. Anger. Sometimes procrastination. Sometimes he gets discouraged and stressed. He isn’t always perfectly patient, and he isn’t always perfectly selfless. Yes, he is fully human, this man of mine.

But there is also goodness. Soul-deep, rooted within his nature by the God who created him. This goodness affects everything he does, every life decision he makes.

There is warmth and sincerity. I don’t know anyone who feels as deeply as my husband when someone has been hurt, especially a child. It’s what makes him the perfect nurse. He doesn’t just do his job, he gives a part of himself to each hurting child, and through that they can begin to heal. Sometimes they don’t heal, and in those moments he feels their death and grieves with their family. My husband is compassionate.

Germany and Holland run through his blood and form his DNA. It’s why he possesses both a sturdy, solid build and impressive height. He is famous for his hugs. The way he wraps a person up in his long arms and tucks them in tight under his chin. He holds them longer than the casual, polite hug customary in our society, because he is in no hurry when it comes to loving people. Those who are extra special to him get a kiss on top of the head. People walk away from his hug feeling seen. Noticed. Safe.

There is fire in my husband. A spark in his spirit always ready to burst into flame at the mention of any injustice against the innocent. He is a rescuer by nature, and heaven help the person who hurts one of the little ones Jesus loves. My husband will stand firm against evil in their defense.

And then, there is tenderness. Gentleness. Kindness. When my sister met my husband for the first time, she told me, “He has Jesus’ eyes.” It is those deep, brown eyes that look on me with such love, day in and day out. Even when he is frustrated with me, even during our rare fights, his eyes never harden when he is looking at me. He is always gentle, always ready to believe the best about the woman he loves.

Photo by Joy Prouty

It is these thoughts that keep me awake in the early hours of the morning.

For a few minutes, I quietly celebrate the man I am married to as he sleeps soundly beside me. Then he rolls over and wraps his strong arms around my waist, and I, too, drift off to sleep feeling seen. Noticed. Safe.

Celebrating my husband is a way I keep life flowing into our marriage. What do you see in your husband or wife that you want to celebrate? Even if—ESPECIALLY if—you’re frustrated with them, or you’ve been fighting, and don’t feel particularly close right now, take a moment to write a few sentences about something you admire in your spouse. Often a bit of perspective shift is all we need to see the beauty in our marriage. The one we love most is the one we should celebrate constantly. 

Photos by Joy Prouty

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