“I waited forty years to write this book. There have been so many stresses in our marriage that I felt unfit to write about marriage at ten, twenty, or thirty years into it. Now at forty years, I realize we will never have it all together, so it seemed a good time to speak. With the words of Paul ringing in my ears, ‘Let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall’ (1 Cor. 10:12), I say with some confidence now that I believe this marriage will last till one of us is dead. Judging by the paucity of widowers in our church, that will probably be me. So let me say it while I still have breath: Thank you, Noël, for hanging in there for forty years. Thank you for making this book possible. I could not have written it without you. What I have seen in the Bible, we have forged in the furnace of life—forty years of marriage and thirty-six years of parenting. I love you….

“Noël, if we live another twenty years (till I am eighty-two and you are eighty), the marriage will be sixty years old. And judging from what I see in the Bible and my memory, it will have been a momentary marriage. But it has been so much more than momentary. It is a parable of permanence written from eternity about the greatest story that ever was. The parable is about Christ and his church. It has been a great honor to take this stage with you. What exalted roles we have been given to play! Someday I will take your hand, and stand on this stage, and make one last bow. The parable will be over, and the everlasting Reality will begin.

— John Piper, This Momentary Marriage (Wheaton: Crossway, 2009), pp. 179-180.