My Valentine…’Til Death Do Us Part

“Will you marry me?”

Barbie planted a huge kiss on Ken.

“I’ll take that as a ‘yes’!” Ken replied.

My sister Carla burst out laughing as she revealed that she was watching me play Barbies. Five-year-old me turned bright red with embarrassment. I chased her down the hall.

I’ve always been quite the hopeless romantic.  I dreamed of having a guy love me the way Gilbert loved Anne Shirley.  Little did I know, one day, God would make that dream come true.

I was 20. Working hard at a summer camp. The Lord had recently brought me out of a depressed, dark time. I was emotionally tired. I was wondering when it’d be my turn to find the one. I had been discontent for a long time. Impatient. Joy didn’t come as naturally as it used to.

I finally surrendered to the fact that it just wasn’t happening, and it probably wouldn’t happen for a very long time. So, I let my heart be free.

Then, BAM. It was as though God was like, “Finally, now she’s ready. She’s given me control.”

A co-worker I had only known for about a month, said she had a friend. A friend named Billy. She didn’t know why, but she said she could just see us together. I did what any girl would do, and looked him up on Facebook. He was really cute. (Win.) He loved the Lord. (Win.) He liked the same things as me. (Win.) It’s kinda crazy how much you can find out about a person through Facebook. lol. Anyways, I told her I was interested.

She told him about me and asked him if he’d want to do a double date. Billy was all like, “Nah, I don’t do blind dates.” She kept persisting, but he wasn’t interested. Finally, she sent him a picture of me. That sealed the deal. 😉

I’ll never forget when we first saw each other. He was even cuter in person. I loved his sweet speaking voice, and the silly jokes he cracked. We were totally clicking on our first double date.

I remember coming home and telling my mom, “Mom, I actually like him.” I didn’t fall for guys easily, so I was just so surprised by how quickly I was crushing. She told me, “I don’t know why, but I have a good feeling about this.” How do moms do that? 😉

Billy and I started seeing each other regularly, and it was becoming more and more obvious that we had a real connection.  One night, he took me to John’s Pass, and he told me he liked me and thought I was beautiful.

“Can I pray with you?” He asked as the wind blew the salty air. It was right then that I knew this guy was special. He prayed about our blooming relationship and for God’s guidance.

That same night, we talked further about our goals and dreams. Life. The way we are. We talked about how there’s beauty in simplicity. That became the motto of our relationship ever since.

A few weeks later, he told me he was at class in Orlando. (He was going to college there at the time.) I remember the sky was particularly lovely that night. It was all pink and orange and the clouds separated in such a way that it looked like a heart. I remember standing on my driveway taking pictures of the sky.  Little did I know, Billy was in the Publix parking lot down the street from my house…also taking pictures of the sky. I went inside to eat dinner, and heard a knock on the door. It was Billy. With a rose. Asking me to be his girlfriend. (Carla always teased me that it was very “The Bachelor” of him. haha.)

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And that was the very beginning of it all. As time went on, God’s hand was so clearly seen and felt in our relationship. There was so much peace. We were engaged 10 months later. And we were married 9 months after that.

God is writing our story. I’ve learned that He always provides, in HIS timing. He took two broken people, and made them stronger through Him, and through Godly relationship. Our love grows and deepens every day. Our prayer is that we will be an example of what a Christ-centered marriage can look like. We are not perfect. But, God’s WILL and TIMING is. May our love be a beacon of what GOD’s love is like.

1 John 4:19 “We love because he first loved us.”

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