Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | November 22, 2010

Finding a Good Thing

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.”
Proverbs 18:22

Cheryl and I are celebrating thirty years of marriage today — a significant milestone in our lives. It seems like only yesterday that we met and became friends. That was a good thing because it was our two-year friendship that paved the way for our marriage. It was during that period that we learned that we really liked each other and enjoyed one another’s company. Earlier this week someone asked me where I took Cheryl on our first date. The answer: ring-side seats at the Golden Gloves Championship Fights. I often tell folks that our first date was a knock-out! Eventually, like turned to love and our friendship led to a marriage proposal. There was no question in my mind when I proposed that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Cheryl. So, on November 22 of 1980, Cheryl and I were married at Second Baptist Church in Corpus Christi, Texas.

As I look back over the past thirty years I am thankful that Cheryl and I agreed on some things that we felt would help us to have a healthy marriage. And, thirty years later, I can say with complete confidence that our marriage is healthy because we have honored our agreement. We did not have the benefit of pre-marital counseling classes before we got married. But, we did have enough sense to talk about the things we felt would make our marriage strong. First, we agreed that we would pray together. Second, we agreed that we would never allow the sun to go down on our anger and that we would never turn our bedroom into a battlefield. Third, we agreed that we would never use the word “divorce” as a threat or even in a joking manner. These may not seem like the most profound things in the world, but they have helped us to build a strong and healthy marriage.

Soon after meeting Cheryl I knew that she was the woman God had for me. And, thirty years later, I still feel the same way. In the words of the writer of Proverbs, I found a good thing when I found Cheryl. It’s not easy being the wife of a minister, but Cheryl has made it easier for me to be a minister. She is a bigger-picture person who understands that ministry is messy and does not always fit neatly into a nine to five schedule. She has always encouraged me to passionately love God and to compassionately love and care for others. She has never once complained that I work too hard or travel too much. She has always rejoiced at my reports and stories of lives transformed by Jesus — and she shares in every victory. Whether I leave home to lead a weekend initiative or to travel to some far-off place, she always sends me out with her blessing and the assurance of her full support.

Cheryl has given that same kind of support to our kids over the years. From the day that our first child was born in the same hospital where Cheryl was born and given up for adoption, she has proven to be a devoted mother. She gave up a good job that paid a good salary to be a stay at home mom and found creative ways to stretch dollars so that she could remain a stay at home mom for our three kids. That was not always easy to do on a minister’s salary, but she did it. She made home a fun place for our kids and a secure place for family. And, when our youngest daughter was in high school, Cheryl returned to college to complete her degree and timed it so that she would graduate from college at the same time our daughter graduated from high school. Cheryl worked hard and graduated magna cum laude!

Not many people know that Cheryl learned to fly before we were married. That is just one more thing that she gave up to be a wife and mother — what she considers the best profession in the world. But, in spite of giving up flying, she has always kept her sights set high for our family. Her love for each of us has made our home the kind of place we enjoy. We are by no measure a perfect family, but we deeply love and care for each other. When I am not traveling, I am a homebody. I enjoy being at home with Cheryl. We spend every evening together. We are husband and wife, but we are also best friends who still enjoy one another’s company. Thirty years after I said “I do” I am still in love with Cheryl. I am grateful to God for helping me find a good thing. I love you, Cheryl.


Responses

  1. Dear Cheryl & Omar~
    Happy 30th Anniversary! I just read the beautiful tribute Omar wrote for you, Cheryl, what a testimony to your marriage as a wife and as a mother! I love you both and am very grateful for the love and support you have shared with our family over the past 30 years. You both have been there for me through some of my most difficult times (my divorce and the loss of my lil’grandson, Clinton Ryan) and then, you have been there when I have experienced some of the happiest days of my life, ie:the birth of my children and my marriage to Craig!! Cheryl, the Lord has blest us since, we were born….being adopted into a Christian home, by Christian parents and then richly blessing us with Christian husbands!!
    I hope ya’ll have a wonderful trip and many more happy years together!!

    God Bless you!~!

    Love & Blessings~
    Cindie (Cheryl’s sister)

  2. Congratulations Mr and Mrs Garcia! Thank you for sharing your wonderful story. You two are such a testimony of God’s plan for marriage being a partnership that ministers to a lost world.

  3. Omar and Cheryl:

    Congratulations. Knowing all that you both do, Omar, I am so grateful for Cheryl’s heart and support of your ministry. You two are a wonderful example of how a God centered union empowers both of you to impact the world with a synergy that amplifies your impact far beyond what you each individually could have accomplished. May God continue to bless you both, so that you continue to bless the world as you both “Go Beyond”, empowered by the love of a
    Christian marriage. I am so blessed to know you both.

  4. Congratulations Pr. Omar,
    though I read the blog late but I was thrilled by your tribute to your wife.
    May the Lord continue to bless you.
    Back in Ugnda we remember you always and pray for you.
    Annette-Rahab Uganda


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