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by Amanda Maguire

“I, Amanda, take you Jeff, to have and to hold from this day forward, for BETTER or for WORSE . . . ” What did I know about those two words then I was 22!

Jeff and I laugh. We are mostly amazed that many of us make the most life changing, single most important decision of all time when we are young and naive. At 22 when I said those vows, BETTER was beaches and sunshine and WORST was the common cold. 16 years later I know BETTER (and I know WORSE).

Some days the best I can be for my husband is a fake smile and maybe kiss on the cheek, because I’ve given my BETTER and best away to so many other people, place, and things that pull on me every second of every day.

At this season in our lives and marriage, with kids ages 6, 9 and 11, they are usually the #1 culprit of getting my best. By the time Jeff gets home from work, I have used up my patience and gentleness tank. My kind words are spent, and I have touched and pulled, held and picked up so many bodies, the last thing I need is more physical touch! My heart does desire time and talk and touch from my husband, it really does.

Some times I am BETTER than others. What I have noticed in those seasons and times that I am able to give my best, I have BETTER BOUNDARIES.

I’m connected to my Creator and I work backwards in my day. I try to think about how can I manage my day today so that I won’t be spent by the end of it. That might mean saying no to some play dates, a sporting event, even cooking dinner :).

I might not be able to stay after school to hang out with all my mom buddies, and I might just need to PLAN some down time for me and the kids on the couch watching a movie in the middle of the day so that I can be a nice human being for the one that I am suppose to love the most.

You probably have more energy than me, and can multi-task much better too. But my point is simple. So much of our day gets away from us and ends up getting the BEST of us. I pray for more BETTER days than WORSE for my marriage and yours. WORSE will happen, that’s a promise.

Be mindful of what’s stealing your BEST. Take it back! Fight for your BEST for your BETTER half!



Amanda Maguire has been married to a youth pastor for 12 years and now the lead pastor of a church for the past 3 years. (It’s the same guy!) Amanda is passionate about being a part of the divorce rate going down in her community and the happy healthy rate of marriages going up!