Jun 16, 2011 | Faith

My husband teaches Geometry.  One thing I remember about Geometry is complementary angles, identified in my non-math mind as two different angles that, when added together, create a whole angle.  

Opposite angle + opposite angle = whole angle.

The last several weeks, I’ve noticed this equation explains  my marriage.  After twenty two years, I’m looking at my complete-opposite-husband-in-every-way as a complementary angle, not an opposing opposite.

Those following this blog from the beginning remember one of my first posts comparing our union to “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”….apples and oranges.  After journeying through some marital growing pains, I’m beginning to see our differences not as polar opposites, but, with grace and patience, as a pretty good equation. 

My husband has patience with our daughter when I don’t.  Complementary.
I have patience with our boys when he doesn’t.   Complementary.
He loves to “farm” our garden, and I prepare the produce.  Complementary.
He does the painting when I decide a wall needs new colors.  Complimentary 
(although he really just wants to make sure it’s “done right”).
I fix stuff on the computer when he’s frustrated with it.  Complementary.
I’m quick-tempered, he’s slow to speak.   Complementary.
I see the big picture when he doesn’t.  Complementary.

The list could go on.  

I have to admit for a long time, I saw these differences as obstacles in our partnership.  Obstacles worth fighting over.

I don’t know if it’s the work we can get accomplished together or simply the laying down of arms, but recently, I’m noticing we make a pretty good team.  

I’m learning being complementary is a lot more productive and fun than trying to fit angles together in positions that are forced.  If laid side by side in their complementary forms, they make a perfect right angle. 

I think that’s how God designed it.  I don’t know why it’s taken 22 years to figure it out, but I’m glad we haven’t given up on how the pieces of the puzzle fit together.  And I’m sure there’ll be many more things pressuring our angle to break apart in years to come.

But I’ll keep trying to go back to the original equation of God’s design….

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work;
If one falls down, his friend can help him up.
Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands in not quickly broken. (Ecc. 4:10, 12)


Simple Secrets For A Compelling Life

Do you feel trapped in a chaotic, relentless, demanding lifestyle? No matter where you live or what season of life you’re in, you can find inspiration from the simpler life. 


  1. A multi-dimensional life

    Such wisdom in your words! It is all about that commitment and the prize is definitely worth the work. The "cord of three strands" – Jesus at the center!


    Yes, Janette, you are so right! "Marriage is hard work" is just not something that comes across the wedding planner agenda!

  3. Janette@Janette's Sage

    Oh you wrote out what I was going to write out on my anniversary post. We are totally opposites…and we are more opposite the longer we are married…I get up early, he sleeps late, I enjoy being alone, he loves being with people, I am organized and organization just takes the life out of him…opposites have attacked and stayed together for 31 years! Our biggest trials have come from years 25 to now…and if we didn't stick together we would have been completely torn apart.Great, great post…now isn't it good we didn't realize that when we married…we naively thought we were soooooooooooo much alike.

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