A Walk to Think

My man and I decided last night that we’d opt out of sleeping late like a holiday morning woos you to do and, instead, head about 30 minutes from our house to the country and watch the sun come up. Usually anything we do our dogs do with us but this time we decided to leave them at home, long-faced and dejected. Sometimes you just need to be alone and hear yourself think. Or take a long pause to see if you can remember why you liked each other. We made us some coffee on the way out the door and poured it in a small thermos. We grabbed a couple of lawn chairs and dragged them out to our favorite spot and sat without saying a single word. When you’ve been married as long as Keith and I, you come to expect that you’re going to have on seasons and off seasons and that, unless something’s going haywire, they’re neither one there to stay. My way of dealing with an off season is to talk it out and gnaw it like a bone into a toothpick till we’re back on or claim we are. Keith’s way is to run for his life and find the nearest dead zone for his cell phone. Both approaches have served us well enough. After all, we have raised two children to adulthood together and fallen head over heels in love with two grandbabies and have no plan at the present to see a lawyer. This time we just decided to do something new. Keith didn’t run and I didn’t talk.ย  We just sat side by side in a pair of lawn chairs and listened to the woods.

I heard a lizard scurry over some dead leaves. Birds sang morning songs. Frogs croaked. The trees creaked and stretched like we woke them out of a dead slumber. A squirrel darted from branch to branch looking for breakfast to go. It reminded me of myself after about three cups of strong coffee. Everything else was moving slow and easy. Tiptoeing really. It was so quiet that I heard an oak leaf detach from a limb way over my head and I watched it fall to the ground in no big hurry at all. The morning sun glistened on the nocturnal masterpiece of a long-legged writing spider.

Wild lemons weighed down the branches of a small tree and just looking at one made the glands in my mouth squirt. It was too early for lemons, wild or otherwise.

Keith and I go to the country sometimes just to remind ourselves of things we have in common. So many of our likes and tastes aren’t only different. They scare the other half to death. They’d never take each other to lunch and, when we go, we have to go without them. We are reminded all the time that we met accidentally, naturally speaking, and married impulsively. But we both dearly love to be outside and to take really long walks and talk about almost nothing. This is one of our favorite spots on this particular country trail. It’s a clear little lazy creek that smiles in the sunshine but grows fangs in a storm, pulling trees from their roots. Maybe that’s Keith and me, too.

But, 31 years later, I still usually follow right after him. On level ground, he always takes the lead, especially on this country trail where the person in front has to swipe one spider web after another or wear them home. On mountain hikes, I take the lead because…well, because, that’s where I’m a beast. He claims it’s the altitude and that I can breathe thin air better than he. I choose to think I’m a hiking fiend…with a bad knee and a herniated disk. Right after this picture, I heard leaves cracking right at my feet as we stepped over an old rotted log. I glanced down expecting to see a big lizard and caught a solid, eye-popping stare at what my man claims to be the biggest copperhead he’s ever seen in his life. May it rest in peace. Lord, have mercy. I do not know why Keith Moore and I can’t seem to do life apart from snakes. It took about 15 minutes for my blood pressure to go back to normal.

When we got to this spot, Keith said, “Sit down over there, Liz’beth, and I’ll take your picture.” Dutiful wife that I am, I did. He’s just learning how to take a decent pic with my I-phone. He doesn’t really have fingertips and that’s what an I-phone takes. The ends of Keith’s fingers are more like manly stumps. He’s really cute when he’s trying though. Keith looks out of place with mini things. It’s not that he’s so big. He’s about 6 feet, 210 pounds. It’s just that his outside is upsized by his insides. Anyway, here’s his wife. She really doesn’t love early morning country humid hair but blogs are for the honest. Not for the proud.

One of our favorite things on this piece of Texas countryside is this old, broken down deer blind that marks the spot where one couple years ago commemorated their heavy crush with a can of spray paint. I don’t doubt it doubled as a kissing blind about that same time. About this time on our walk, my man and I were feeling a little less off. Sometimes all it takes to find some fresh affection is a willing recollection. Like B + K.

Well, thanks for taking a stroll with me, Sister. Don’t make anything serious out of this harmless chatter. When you’ve been married as long as we have and you have Moore feelings than normal, life is one big, wonderful, gnarly twisted knot of off and on again. But make no mistake. It’s a knot.


468 Responses to “A Walk to Think”

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  1. 301
    Elaine says:

    Thank you Beth. I needed to be reminded of the on and off seasons. Thank you for being real. God wants us to be real and open. He definitely blesses us through your honesty. Have a great week.

  2. 302
    Jean says:

    Thanks for your post. I’ve been married for 27 years, for better and for worse. We have three grown sons, one who is special needs. I am so encouraged by your honest words about your life. I’ve enjoyed all your bible studies and currently have a group of about 20 ladies who gather once a week, except in the summer, to enjoy your studies. Looking forward to Anointed, Transformed and Redeemed beginning on Monday, Sept 13. Planning on Deeper Still in December.

  3. 303
    cindy says:

    Glad to hear 2 other people that are total opposites married!! this letter encourages me in my marriage which also has off times. thanks beth! cindy

  4. 304
    Laura says:

    Beautiful! And, you looked too cute for it to be sunrise time.

  5. 305
    Jackie says:

    My man is too ADD for walks without a specific destination. ๐Ÿ™‚ I follow him though, when the ground is level. There was impulsiveness in our commitment 14 years ago. There’s on agains and off agains but Never a dull moment. He’s really my bff and so much more. It’s a knot. Our marriage is definitely proof of God’s love and intimate involvement in the lives of those who love Him. We love Him. I love my man. Thanks Beth.

  6. 306
    Susan says:

    Thirty seven years tomorrow…I know from where you speak sweet Beth, and it’s not for the faint hearted or the weak, but it’s worth every step of the journey, always.

  7. 307
    karen says:

    Thanks for posting this Beth. It is good to hear that others have ups and downs in there marriages. In my head I know they do but going through it yourself you always feel like the only one and like it’s never going to get better. This year, 10 years for my husband and I, has been so very challenging. Not even sure why, we have had harder years before (first child very sick in hospital when she was born, business failed, etc.) Maybe God is growing us and the growing pains always hurt. Anyways, glad to hear that they are just seasons and they don’t last forever. It’s great to hear how you both spent the morning together. I pray that the Lord will allow you to reconnect better than ever and that you will have a crazier love for each other than you ever have.

    Take care

  8. 308
    andrea t. says:

    thanks for your transparency… ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. 309

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful date day with you and your wonderful husband.
    God bless you Beth Moore.

  10. 310
    Mindy says:

    My first thought was “I want this.” I know marriage can be hard but I’m willing to take the knots and everything if the good Lord will provide me a man.

    At church on Sunday we learned about waiting on God, both patiently and expectantly. That’s where I am…or least, trying to be.

  11. 311

    Hi Beth!

    My name’s Monica Mogerman. I am a junior in college majoring in English and Education and I’ve done four of your Bible studies and read a couple of your books. I have to tell you that your passion for God is uber incredible! You have inspired me to start up a video ministry on youtube to spread the word of God to young women!

    I was recently noticed by the Christian women’s t-shirt company JCLU Forever, and they struck up a deal with me that they’ll give me free shirts if I talk about the shirts in videos. I’ve currently made three videos for them and enjoy it so much! It’s so rad seeing how God uses me to help encourage other believers! There are times when I have no idea what to talk about in a video, and then, after praying, I’ll just start talking and I am amazed at the words God puts in my mouth!

    I mentioned your “Believing God” Bible study in my most recent video and my mom told me I should send it to you, so here it is, I hope it was all right that I mentioned your Bible study and that it wasn’t against some sort of copyright infringement that I was unaware of…>>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1IiZgH_ezs

    This video was actually the second part to a music video I made a couple weeks earlier here>>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEgzCjHGWqU&feature=related

    And the reason JCLU Forever chose to give me shirts was because of my testimony video here>>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ll0eMbLbp0U&feature=related

    I love the idea of being able to write Bible studies and books and to make videos like you do, and if you happen to have any tips or suggestions it would seriously be much appreciated.

    I was able to see you live in St. Louis a couple months ago and felt so encouraged afterwards! Thanks you much for all you do! You have an incredible ministry!

  12. 312
    Samantha Crawford says:

    Well, in my lifes experiences, I have found that God seems to put things in my path repeatedly when he is telling me something. I, being human tend to think that if it doesen’t come from the bible or some great teacher that it isn’t relevant. Not true, Aren’t all the creatures of the world at God’s command, apart from us who have been given free will? Mabey, he is using these snakes that you seem to be running into all the time as something he wants you to learn from. Vigalence comes to mind. Anyway, one of the strongest beliefs I have is that no one thing happens by coincidence. That our God, is in control and plans every little detail in our lives as we navigate. As long as we let him. All things work together for good to those who love him and are called according to his purpose.

    Siesta Sami, S.I.C.

  13. 313
    Amy Reyes says:

    I loved this blog entry. I’ve been married 20 years and it just made sense. You are lovely and a blessing. Thank you.

  14. 314
    Brenda Johnson says:

    Being married is full of ups and downs, insides and out, highs and lows, but when you are committed, always leaning on God, He blesses your union and therefore you always come through and are better and richer because of it. My hubby and I have been together 34 years now and also thrive when our two grandbabes are around, which is quite often…being grandparents is the best thing in the world, just another season in life that brings us closer. How thankful I am to the Lord for all He has done!!!
    Your pictures today are beautiful, thanks for sharing!

  15. 315
    Shannon Costanzo says:

    Hey Siestas,

    I am super excited because I will be attending the Simulcast on the 18th from Ocoee, Florida. I am looking forward to joining my fellow sisters in Christ.
    Have a great week everyon ๐Ÿ™‚
    Shannon Kissimmee, Florida

  16. 316
    Marie says:

    I love your blogs. You are absolutely so real, I especially identify with the on and off of a love relationship. I have had my beautiful husband for 26 years now and through a renewed relationship with God, I am finding him irresistable at the moment. If you ever figure out just how to love early morning country humid hair please share.

  17. 317
    Pam says:


    Your description of “off and on” is very helpful and timely. I couldn’t figure out why we are like that. But it makes sense. Thanks so much for sharing your marriage with us.

  18. 318
    JessicaR says:

    love your transparency … thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. 319
    Michelle Tabb says:

    I don’t usually comment but I had to on this. Thank you so much for always staying real. It has to be so difficult to know what to put out there and what to keep private. Thanks for sharing your walk – my man and I are 20+ years and we don’t have a thing but Jesus in common. Thank goodness that’s more than enough.

  20. 320
    Amanda says:

    I love you.

  21. 321
    Dori says:

    I wonder if what we experience with our men has something to do with their anticipation of what is to come. Football first, followed by all the opening hunting weekends right around the corner. Maybe they feel sequestered for the summer, vacationing with family and keeping us happy. Now they get a sense that it is just about “their turn” to have fun. I somehow love this transition that happens year after year and have discovered that as my hubby starts planning his adventures for the fall, I quickly realize how much I am going to miss him once he starts his grand adventure.

  22. 322
    Paul Cooley says:

    Beth, where in the dickens did you guys go for this morning experience? (By the way, I’m the guy that lives down the steet – close to Jackrabbit… with the white hair and big square box of a house… who right now feels lost and alone.)


  23. 323

    OH Beth this is so what my heart needed to read tonight. We’re in an “off” moment, but yet at the same time we both know and he verbally expressed today that “I wouldn’t want to do life with anyone else but you”. And so we do life. Sometimes quietly, other times too loud, but always together.
    Love you Miss Beth!

  24. 324
    Grateful in KC says:

    So grateful for your authenticity, your humor and your faithful commitment to each other. May He continue to richly bless your marriage.
    I cannot tell you how I love and appreciate you!

  25. 325
    Poorna says:

    Dear Siesta Mama,

    Thank you for being authentic. You probably get this a lot, but I can’t think of a better way to say it: you are an inspiration.

    Siesta Poorna
    Indianapolis, IN

  26. 326
    Amy :) says:

    Everyone’s already said it, but I have to ditto…I love that you are purposeful about being authentic. I was asked by a family member (visiting over the holiday) why I thought you were so influential with women. I love questions like this b/c it means I can share my opinion ad nauseum…someone’s asking!!! Anyhow, without blinking, I responded it’s b/c you are so REAL…that and b/c you are so much FUN!! Seriously…you can be talking about something gut wrenching and then make us laugh at ourselves (or you;) and then, of course, hit home with the TRUTH about our truth.
    Yes, Mama Beth, I took good notes in Richmond at LPL. One thing that struck me while there was how far the Lord has brought me since my first LPL. I used to be the one who wondered how in the world the Lord could possibly speak a word to me in the midst of so many amazing women. I wanted to FEEL special to Him but something blocked my receiving His love for me. (Maybe not believing to receive…) Thankfully, He has brought me through that hard season, and I thoroughly enjoyed worshipping in His presence at LPL…I loved seeing you and Curtis jumping on that last song ๐Ÿ™‚ Too fun! You are seriously one of my favorite people that I hardly know, Beth. Next time you’re in Virginia, I’d love to have you over for dinner and catch up!
    Blessings to you,

  27. 327
    Kim Jacobson says:

    Sweet story Beth, I am a visual person so I appreciate the photos. It looked like a garden of Eden snake and all!
    You are blessed to have each other as friends and loves.

  28. 328
    Jennifer says:

    I loved all your pictures! Just beautiful.

  29. 329
    Church Lady says:

    The things that you wrote about are the things that I love the most about being out hunting. I’m sure that Keith would agree. I always tell my husband that in the woods is my “Happy Place” and it truly is.
    I’m glad that the both of you got to get away and enjoy some quiet time in your “happy place”.

  30. 330
    Kristin says:

    Awesome, awesome, awesome writing! LOVED this! Great idea, and who knew there are wild lemons?? (LOL — Duh.!!)

  31. 331
    Hilary says:

    I really enjoyed your walk and your honesty Beth !!! I really appreciate your honest emotions about your marriage and how up’s and down’s happen. I can relate to old behavior being shoved at the same issue and expecting different results. My husband and I have recently started praying for each other every night. God is so awesome and has been able to work leaps and bounds in our relationship and in the process, healed our relationship. My long winded point is that I really appreciate your truth about relationships having off times and not necessarily meaning the knot has been untied.

  32. 332
    Frito Bandito says:

    Thank you for being real. I need to take a walk with my man…

  33. 333
    Kelly says:

    I loved your post Beth! My husband Ron & I have been married 25 years and have 2 teenage daughters…we love our alone time together. My husband’s favorite place to be is in the woods. Our husbands are kindred spirits of sorts…in what way… deer hunting!! In fact, Keith might get a kick out of this: tell him that one of your siesta’s husbands is on the cover of Buckmasters magazine this month. Yes, I am now married to a cover model! If Keith ever wants a shot at a buck like the one on the cover, he needs to come to Ohio.

    By the way, I am about to “Break Free” for the third time. Almost 200 women will be starting the study tomorrow. Can’t wait!

  34. 334
    Lisa McGriff says:

    Beth, this post meant so much to me. My husband and I have a great relationship but sometimes it the quite moments that mean so much. The gentle brush of a hand across your arm, catching him looking at me when he thinks I don’t see, watching him interact with his stepdaughters, playing with our pups.. He looks so rough tough and gruff, but I know the heart that lays beneath… A heart that belongs to God first, then me!

  35. 335
    Sherry says:

    You have no idea how much I needed to read this. Thanks for being honest about the fact that you and Keith have “off seasons.” I’m in one of those seasons myself regarding my marriage. Don’t really know if my husband is or not, I’m pretty much keeping my feelings to myself. Some days I just don’t want to be married anymore. 26 years.

  36. 336
    Jeanette says:

    WE all go through seasons in our marriage. i made it pass the winter season now we are in spring agian… :)No matter how i feel i know the truth…There is no one elese i rather spend my life with then my man….

  37. 337
    Anna Mitchell says:

    Thanks Ms. Beth! It was great hearing from you this morning. Thanks for sharing a special piece of yourself with us today. I love you with the love of the Lord!

  38. 338
    Beverly S says:

    Oh, dear Beth,
    I have been out of computer range for over a week, and today was the first day in a while I could read your blog–God certainly knew. He did.
    My man and I are coming up on 31 years as well. A girl from the San Francisco Bay area married a guy from New Jersey who could see the Empire State Building from the highway near his home. We have had our “ups and downs” as well over the years — medical issues, career disappointments, separations during military deployments. We have raised three children, all married to wonderful, godly spouses, and have two grandchildren whom we love dearly and hate that we see them on skype far more than we get to see their darling faces.
    What we do when ministry burdens are extremely heavy (he’s a pastor, I counsel/mentor women, especially those in recovery from addictions and abuse) is just go for a drive so my man can take some pictures. His hobby is photography, mostly landscape and seascape. Of course shooting adorable pics of grandbabies is his current passion, when he can. We don’t talk much, but we drive/walk and look for that one shot that will work. Just seeing God’s handiwork seems to balance both our souls, and when we return, we are ready to “do life” once again.
    Marriage is hard. Life is hard. We Americans have bought into the lie that it isn’t supposed to be. It may be hard, but isn’t a solid marriage worth fighting for?

  39. 339
    Christine says:

    We’ve been married for 10 years and have only recently started feeling “off”. And I’ve been praying – Lord, is this normal? Does this really happen to everyone? Do these “off” feelings MEAN something? Please help us to grow closer! Help me not to make a bigger deal than it is. Is this just par for the course? Do I accept it or fight it? Help me find security in this time. Help me not feel restless. Just help.

    God’s words to us are in the Bible, and in our prayers, and some times, they can even show up on a blog.

    I’m feeling so much more assured and relieved. Thank you.

  40. 340
    LindsayA says:

    Thanks for this Beth. My hubby and I are a few months into our 5th year of marriage, and I can honestly say, this has been one of the most ‘off seasons’ ever! Reading this reminded me that it’s not just us, and we can make it. I guess it’s good to know that even in twenty years we won’t have it all down… really takes the pressure off ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. 341
    cindy morgan says:

    Thanks for sharing this. The spot you all have there is so beautiful Like something from another age. I am glad you two can be quiet together.
    Thankful for you and your honest blog. It inspires me.


  42. 342
    Leslie says:

    Thank you for this! Marriage is a commitment. Love is an act of the will, not a warm fuzzy. The will has to kick in when the warm fuzzies are buried under a pile of laundry and past due bills.


  43. 343
    Michele says:

    I’m kinda quiet/pondering today. I’ve been unemployed 2 years today. God has definitely done a lot in this season. Wondering what is next…

  44. 344
    Anon (nothing catchy) says:

    Thank you for this post. We’ve been married 22 years, and the last 10 months have been the absolutely most difficult time ever. When is enough, enough? I don’t mean, when should we quit. We aren’t quitting. But I will be so grateful when we learn whatever God is teaching us in this season and decides that enough is enough for a while. I’m tired of my hurting heart. Thanks, Beth, for reminding us occasionally that marriage has its downs sometimes, and that the ups make them totally worth it.

  45. 345
    Melissa says:

    I love you so, Ms. Beth. Thanks for the honesty. I think a lot of people give up on their marriage because they think it’s not going to be rough. Boy,oh,boy …

  46. 346
    Dee Anne says:

    Thank you Beth for being vulnerable, real, and open with your life. I believe it gives you credibility in ministry and I appreciate you so much. How true that there are ups and downs in marriage. I think marriage is about working through the valleys in order to appreciate the mountain tops. Like nothing else, marriage teaches us lessons that serve us in every aspect of life…. peace making, balance, self-control, diplomacy, unconditional love, just to name a few. Thank you for your encouraging words and testimony.

  47. 347
    Judi Kenney says:

    Thx you sister-in-Christ! Thx for being real and letting us all know and agree that off and on is okay and we don’t have to worry if your man and you have a few off days. Thx for giving us the idea to take a walk and get out of the city and be alone with our Great God and each other! You’re right…sometimes we just need a bit of fresh air and beauty away from our familiar surroundings. I loved your pics! The knot is tied!

  48. 348
    Cara says:

    Hi Beth!

    I love reading your musings ๐Ÿ™‚ My friend and I are starting and in-depth bible study today. Last week I stayed up late looking up verses to pray over our small group and somehow got stuck reading the road to Emmaus story in Luke. When I hit chapter 24 vs 45 I froze…”Jesus opened their minds so they could understand the scriptures” What a perfect verse to pray! I shared it with my mom and my co-leader friend.

    On Sunday, I started prepping for our first study, which happens to be A Woman’s Heart: God’s Dwelling Place. I was watching your introduction session and couldn’t help but smile and laugh when you lead us right to Luke 24:45 as the Key verse for the study. Apparently, our Abba Father thought I should have a heads up on it, I don’t think I’ll forget that one ๐Ÿ™‚

    God’s richest blessings,

  49. 349
    Krista says:

    I love this post! Thanks for sharing your thoughts ๐Ÿ™‚

  50. 350
    Mary in SC says:

    Well, my man and I could use a walk in the woods sometime. Life just seems to be at 100 miles an hour with 4 kids, work and the husband pastoring and always at the church. We seem to just see each other in passing. We all need to stop and smell the roses…. take a walk…take a hike……without kids!
    Honestly, did you really stay quiet? ๐Ÿ™‚

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