jean and niell

I just returned from a beautiful pastors retreat at the InterVarsity Camp in the Eastern U.P. The fall color was at its peak, and so was the fellowship. I enjoyed the drive up and back with Tom Beetham, and the hour we all sat around swapping jokes until it was time for bed. It’s amazing how much more we enjoy each other’s company when we don’t have access to the Internet.

I returned home in time to watch the presidential debate, and I have to say that Romney seemed Reaganesque. I’m not vouching for all of his facts, as I’ve heard some rumbling today from the left that he withdrew from previous positions. But playing loose with the truth reminds me of Reagan’s second term, so Romney would remain Reaganesque even if the accusations are true. He did seemed much more presidential than Obama, who appeared overwhelmed by the moment.

The most interesting item at the pastor’s retreat was Jean and Niell. Jean is a volunteer at the camp, and Niell is her fiancé. Nothing unusual about that, except they are both 81. They have known each other for more than 50 years, but not in this way. They travelled the world with their spouses and another couple, and when Niell and Jean’s spouses died, they reached out to each other for support. And then they decided they’d take one more run at love.

They are the cutest couple you’ve ever seen, holding hands—check that, caressing each other’s hands—as they cuddled on the couch. When our study mentioned there wouldn’t be marriage on the new earth, Jean said that’s a good reason to do it now. They’re clearly a young 81, but still, they’re 81!

Their infatuation put the rest of us to shame, and reminded me that we’re never too old to fall in love with our spouse. We may be too stale, selfish, or bored, but we’re never too old. Jean and Niell will be married on Oct. 28 in Cedarville, Michigan, and rather than honeymoon on nearby Mackinac Island, they’ll return to her apartment. They welcome visitors, as long as you call ahead.

Congratulations, Jean and Niell. May God grant you many years of good health to enjoy your love.

2 Comments

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  1. What a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. This was really fun to hear your reflections on Mike. I don’t know if it can be changed, but I think her name is spelled “Gene”. I’m sure she wouldn’t be offended. Truly a blessed retreat with blessed people! Thanks again for all your efforts to keep us growing theologically!

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