Revs. V. Gordon and Rachel Glenn III have known each other since 1994 and have been married for 23 years.
Who talked to who first? Gordon: I talked to Rachel first. She was not looking for a mate, just a Seminary Degree. In fact she told me early on that she wasn’t interested in getting married nor having children. God intervened and both came true in time.
Who said “I love you” first? Gordon: She did. It took me by surprise and a little while to say it back. But she meant it.
Did you go to the same school? We met in Seminary – Boston University School of Theology. We both were pursuing the same degree, in the same year of study, and were in most of the same classes together so we were together a lot. Friends turned into a deeper relationship. God set us up.
Where do you go the most as a couple? I know it sounds boring, but with two children in school and at home most of the time, we go to Walmart or the Grocery Store most often. We most times walk to the nearest store and talk through our days and take the time to reconnect with no children around.
Who is more social? Gordon: It depends on the environment. If its in a place where we don’t know most of the people, I am more social. If it’s in an environment where we do know most of the people, Rachel is more social. I like to think of myself as an extrovert masquerading as an introvert and Rachel describes herself as an introvert who masquerades as an extrovert.
Who is the neat-freak? Gordon: I used to work for a retail clothing store that showed the “right way” of folding clothes and I implement that in household chores. Rachel is a bit of a germaphobe and gets deep into it when it comes to cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms. They have to be spotless.
Who is the most stubborn? It depends on the issue. Whomever the issue is most important to is the most stubborn.
Who wakes up earlier? Gordon: I get up at 6 a.m. (or earlier) every morning when the alarm goes off, meditate and exercise for 45 minutes each day before getting ready for the day. Rachel, on the other hand, would prefer to sleep in most days. She’s a night owl while I’m an early bird.
Where was your first date? La Famiglia Italian Restaurant, Boston, Mass. It’s a little family restaurant located near the dorm Rachel stayed in seminary. Every meal is served with a box and a ½ of pasta on a huge plate. We did our best to finish our meal but we were unable and enjoyed leftovers for days.
Who has the craziest exes? Gordon: I do, but they all live in New England, far, far, away.
What is your secret to making marriage work?
• Putting God first above all else and praying together and taking time to do things not associated with “church work.”
• Talking out issues before they fester into something bigger.
• Having our own space. We both give each other space to pursue our own interests that are not tied to the other so that we have our own identities.
• We have each other’s back and don’t let anyone get in between us.
How did you figure out the household chores? We decided early on who was better at what and we just did those things. Rachel is great at getting the children ready for school or going out. I am great at day-to-day cleaning and general maintenance. She kills the spiders; I kill all other bugs. She fixes the Wi-Fi and the toilet. I read directions and put things together.
What have you learned to appreciate about your spouse that you did not know when you were first married? She’s a very good cook. When we were in school together, we didn’t have much time to cook for each other. She knows me very well and I can talk to her about any and everything.
What aspect of marriage were you most pleasantly surprised by? How much we often are thinking the same thing. We are content with being just us very often and don’t always need to have other people around, or going out somewhere fancy, to have a good time.
What do you think is the most challenging part of being married? It’s challenging when we get unsolicited advice from people with a quite different concept of marriage. Early on it was, “When are you having children?” Then it was, “Don’t you want to have another child?” People often advise based upon how their marriage is, or how they want it to be, not how God has designed ours to be.
What has been the greatest obstacle you have faced over the years? Pregnancies that ended without a baby.
What’s one thing that wife/husband does that makes you feel glad you married years ago? We understand each other in a way that no one, not even our blood-relatives do.
If you could have been given a key piece of advice before marrying, what would it have been? Be friends first. Date for at least a year. Go to premarital counseling and discuss roles, finances, and beliefs.