In an article on “Secrets for a successful marriage,” my husband Dietrich talked about the marriage experts who put great emphasis on the spouses’ character development, that is, their attitude and internal disposition:
“In fact, most marital advice has to do with strengthening the roots of human relationships. Like the roots of a tree, our internal disposition also needs to be firmly grounded in the solid foundation of our value system and world view so we can brave even the greatest storms.
To achieve a good marriage, we need to develop two areas, namely, internal attitudes and external skills. Internal attitudes have to do with our spiritual lives, which define the roots of our marriages, while external skills focus on building and nourishing our marital bond.”
To nourish our marital bond Dietrich and I loved nature walks. My best memories are in walking the mountains of Austria and France through the hot sunshine, rain, or snow. The trees became our friends. They were part of ourselves, as well as the sky and the sun and the wild animals. He always preferred the unmarked paths down the mud and the hills. But to please me most of the time we walked the well-marked paths, the ones which almost always arrived at the next hut where special hot soup or other Austrian specialties were awaiting us.
I was receiving so much love and care going hand in hand with my beloved and absorbing in my body and soul the energizing and life-giving elements of nature. He never failed to mention each time and every time how most beautiful God’s creation is.