Sunday, February 11, 2007

'Til Death Do Us Part

This interview was part of an article which appeared in the February 2006 edition of the AFA Journal. The photo at left was taken sometime in the late 1960's before we were married. The photos in the article were taken at the occasion of our wedding ceremony at Ackerman Baptist Church on December 17, 1972.

'Til Death Do Us Part
By Rebecca Grace - AFA Journal Staff Writer

From childhood neighbors to high school sweethearts, a trip down the aisle was the next natural step for Buddy Smith, AFA’s executive assistant to the president, and his love, Carol.

"I was in ninth grade, and she was in seventh grade when I first expressed an interest in her," Buddy recalled. "Her mother put a stop to that, and I couldn’t get past a phone call."

But as the youngsters matured, a relationship of love began to develop that led them to marriage at the ages of 21 and 19.

"We believe that marriage was God’s idea and that He brought us together as husband and wife," Buddy explained. "The foundation of our marriage has always been the acknowledgment that it is made up of three people — the two of us and God as the central figure."

"We like to picture Christian marriage as a triangle — a man and woman at the base with Jesus Christ as the apex," Carol added.

Therefore, a Christ-centered home is the couple’s master key to a fulfilling marriage.

"[But] other vital keys on the ring of a lasting marriage include unconditional love, mutual trust, honesty, respect, care, communication, sexual faithfulness and purity, friendship, reconciliation and growth," Buddy said, all in view of commitment.

"We think it’s very important to talk about commitment in the marriage relationship in light of the nebulous meanings of ‘love’ in today’s culture. … For many couples today, love is treated as a feeling that comes and goes and is void of any commitment," Buddy explained.

"But marriage is not whatever society chooses to make of it," he added. "A Christian marriage is a total commitment of two people to the person of Jesus Christ and to one another."

"We understood on our wedding day that our commitment was only a gesture of beginning the lifelong process of handing over everything to Jesus Christ and one another," Carol explained.

Advice: Anchor yourselves in a Bible-believing church that offers ongoing ministry opportunities designed to strengthen existing marriages.

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