The Crooms Share Their Secrets to Making Their Marriage last over 25 Years
What is the name of you and your spouse?
We are the Croom’s. Rodney S. Croom and Angela R. Croom.
How many years have you been together and how did you meet?
We have been together overall for 30 years and married for 26 years. I first saw Angela aka Angie at a Sunday worship service in November 1989. We didn't speak to each other until a New Year’s Eve service at Grace Community Baptist Church that same year. She was wearing a blue and white sailor suit as she was leading devotion. I was dating someone else at the time and brought my date with me to worship service that same night, Rodney describes. As soon as I saw her front and center of the church, I said to myself, “Whoa…. That’s my wife!” They soon would be introduced to each other through mutual friends and begin a new friendship.
Where was your first date?
On our first date, we went to Lake Millerton 20 miles northeast of Fresno, Ca. He prepared a beautiful picnic, complete with sandwiches, and fruit. We relaxed and talked on a blanket in the grass. It was on this day May 5, 1990, I learned more about Rodney and that I also had bad allergies! I had never experienced allergies before and with the beautiful grassy scenery, it had me in tears. While I was enjoying myself, my eyes were watering up with happy tears at the same time, so we had to cut our date short. Rodney did not know what to do so he took me home where I would meet his mother. “That’s how I got to meet his mother”, Angie describes. “Ms. Croom took care of me right away.”
How did your husband propose to you?
February 14, 1994, Rodney wanted to take me to one of our favorite Mexican restaurants (El Cid) for dinner. The restaurant was extremely popular, especially on Valentine’s day. Rodney had a coupon for a buy one get one free. We did not have much money back then and we both were on a tight budget. I was all excited but when we got to the restaurant, they did not accept the coupon on a “major holiday” so we had to leave and I was furious! He tried to take me to another restaurant, but I was acting a fool by that time and there was nothing he could “propose” that I would accept. So, we ended up at Carl’s Jr and went back to my apartment and watched the Cosby Show. Afterward, I told him to leave and said, “You can let yourself out!” To my surprise the next morning while I was getting dressed for work, I looked on my ironing board, and there it was A RING!!!!! Of course, I said Yes!! I called him immediately. I felt so bad about how I acted the night before, but I quickly realized he wanted a life with me and had bigger plans than just dinner the other night. GOD had shown us that through our struggles together it was worth leaping together. It was a safe bet knowing Rodney’s character.
What are your occupations?
Rodney Croom is a Husband, Father, and Pastor at First Baptist Church of Palm Springs
Angela Croom is a Wife, Mother, Servant Leader for the women, and handles patient financial services.
We do the best we can in putting our occupations in the proper order. When we have everything in order, our children are ok not being first all the time. An aligned lifestyle will set you free to do ministry and not feel guilty doing it.
Do you have children/ Grandchildren, if yes how many?
We have three children, Alexandria (25), Faith (23) and Rodney Jr. (21).
What is your favorite activity you enjoy doing together?
Traveling together is our favorite thing to do! We have been to Cape Town So. Africa, Hawaii, NYC, Bahamas, and we enjoy our annual trips to Arizona and Las Vegas. We do not need large groups to travel with us, we enjoy being alone when we can.
What would you say is the secret to a long happy marriage?
The flame may go low, but it does not have to go out! Keep the flame lit. Keep courting and making sure your wife is secure in the relationship. She’s the Queen! Communication is the key to any marriage. The enemy doesn’t want you to be united with your husband, Angie explains. In the area of intimacy and sexual desires, wives are into your husbands. When we are tired and exhausted from the many roles we play in the home, go take a minute, and “Get yourself together.” Be intentional in your marriage. Be intentional with your husband.
What was the biggest challenge you and your spouse had to endure that challenged the two of you?
Our biggest challenge was in the early years of our marriage. With two worlds colliding and learning to die to self, submitting while learning to trust in the LORD and each other was an adjustment. We had to learn how to go from independent to interdependent. To become one under GOD’s authority without forcing it took us some time.
How do you resolve conflict?
Letting go of self and not always having to be right. Ephesians 4:25-32 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath. This scripture has really been our go to when we are in disagreement.
What advice would you like to share with newlyweds?
Money is not the bottom line in the relationship. Love is! Biblical love. Learn how to laugh at your mistakes and how to live together. Love, laugh, and learn together. You will not always like what each other does, but you should like each other. Be a good steward over one another’s, mind, heart, body, finances, and ministry!
interview by: Samuel Thompson