Thursday, June 27, 2013

...A longing fulfilled is a tree of life!

A deep heart longing was fulfilled on Saturday, June 8, when the professor referenced in previous posts became my husband!  What joy to look back on the journey and see God's hand so clearly leading both of us.  At times in the journey, it wasn't so clear, yet He faithfully carried us and there is no doubt that His plan was and is perfect.

So, the story... On Saturday, March 30 (the day before Easter) we made plans to get together for some time in the afternoon and then to go to dinner with some friends.  He told me that he had a little adventure for me, but I really didn't think anything of it except to be excited that he had something planned.  For too long I have gotten ideas in my head and allowed hope to rise, only to be let down when the ideas in my head didn't materialize.  The Lord has been teaching me through that (and through wise counsel) to live in and enjoy the moments rather than putting hopes in ideas and dreams that were just that - dreams.  So, I purposefully decided to enjoy whatever he had planned for this adventure and not think about what it could be.

When I arrived at his house he was finishing some laundry and the TV was on.  We had decided a day or so before to just watch TV rather than a movie.  He was very calm and collected - no sign of what was to come in just a few hours.  After some time relaxing, chatting and watching TV, he asked if I was ready for an adventure and told me he had planned a little Easter egg hunt.  I still didn't think anything of it. First I had to find my Easter basket and then find 12 eggs hidden around the house, each with a verbal clue.  After finding the 12th, he told me there was one more... the clue was, "Chopin, Mozart and Rachmaninov all had this is common."  The answer was the piano, and there was a large box there.  He was sitting on the couch and asked me to bring it over.  I opened it to find a large Faberge-like egg.  He asked me to open it while he held the bottom, and when I did there was a ring in the bottom!!!!!!!!!!!!  I was in shock!  I had hoped that he would propose sometime soon, but truly did not expect it to happen on that day!!!  My first words were, "Is this for real?!?!?"  To which he replied, "May I place this ring on your finger?"  He told me that I was God's gift to him, that he loved me and wanted to know if I would do him to honor of being his wife.  Here is where the story gets muddled... I am sure I said yes right away and kissed him, but he says I just kissed him. :)  Either way, I think he knew my answer!  For the next few minutes we just sat on the couch in silence punctuated with me saying, "For real? This really just happened?!?" And he just sat there with a silly grin on his face.  :)  After some time, we went and met our friends for dinner, which was all part of his plan for the day - time celebrating with friends!!

Wow! That was one of the most amazing days of my life, but it just keeps getting better!  After 10 weeks and much planning, and we had the most beautiful and blessed wedding ceremony and reception.  We promised ourselves to each other until death parts us, and we had grace as the theme of our ceremony.  An absolutely life-changing and unbelievably blessed day!

Then we went on our honeymoon - a surprise planned by him - to Cape May.  Those days were even more amazing than our wedding day... And each day following has been incredible!  God had blessed us with each other - gifts that neither of us deserve.  The Holy Spirit is leading us and we look forward to what God is going to do in and through our marriage.  We desire that our love for each other will shine and show the world an example of His love!

He is faithful and He can be trusted!

Friday, September 3, 2010

And the journey continues...

Being in a relationship with a man who has the Lord as the top priority in his life is amazing. Absolutely amazing. We could sit together holding hands, talking about what God is doing in our lives for hours on end. I am so thankful and blessed! And I cannot wait to see what God is going to do in and through us!

Monday, May 10, 2010

"Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life."
Proverbs 13:12

I found myself totally distracted today. My mind drifts so quickly to thinking about the future... wondering what God has in store... trying to plan it out... overjoyed at how God has blessed my life with an amazing, godly man. I'm not sure my feet are firmly connected to the ground. And those feelings and the JOY is WONDERFUL!

But, as he reminded me today in an email... we have to be careful to guard our hearts and minds... we still have a distance to go.

I told him tonight that for a long time the first part of this verse stood out to me... my hope was deferred. But later this evening I realized how much the second part of the verse is standing out to me... I think I'm experiencing the tree of life in a longing fulfilled. Amazing.

Once again, I need to open my hands (so easily I tighten them around my plans and dreams) and turn it ALL over to the Lord. His plan is perfect... it's not easy, it's sometime painful... but, it's perfect.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Ten years....

Eight or nine years ago a situation would repeat itself often... I would be leaving college to drive to my apt and a certain professor would also be leaving to drive to his home... and in the privacy of my car I would say out loud to myself, "I'm going to marry that man!" No human ever heard those words come from my mouth. It was a thought I pondered on my own.

Fall of 2002, several months after graduating, that professor asked me out on a date and our relationship moved from friends to a dating relationship... I thought God was fulfilling that statement I said to myself in my car. But after eight months of dating, it was clear that he was not the man for me. Our lives were not headed in the same direction. He said he was too "single"... to independent. Yet, on one occasion he told me that if he ever married, he thought he'd marry me... that statement shaped the "romantic aspect" of the next five years of my life.

For the next five plus years I waited for God to change him... I made every decision (or waited on making decisions) with the thought "what if he changes"... but he didn't change. Finally I realized I had my life on hold waiting for him, when God wanted me to move forward into the abundance He had for me as His daughter. I cut off all communication with him, and purposefully started to ask the Lord what He wanted to do in and through me. I learned how to have authentic friendships with girlfriends and invested in them, I joined my church, I bought a house, and I fell in love with Jesus in new ways and learned to dance with Him! I continued to pray that God would change his life, but I let go and moved on. I told the Lord I was closing the door on the relationship and the only way it would open was if HE, God, opened it! The one and a half years that followed were times of tremendous growth. Most of the previous entries in this blog were written during that time. The Lord did awesome things in my life and I give Him ALL glory for it!

When I got a call on November 13, 2008 saying that this man had had a massive stroke, I was in absolute shock. One of my initial thoughts in the 24 hours that followed was, "God, I prayed you would change him, but THIS??" In the few weeks that followed I very specifically remember asking God to show me my role in all of it. He enabled me to be there as a friend, something I never thought I'd be able to be. Through some ups and downs, times of great learning, God enabled me to guard my heart, yet give love and compassion freely to he and his parents. And I continued to pray that God would lead this man into a deeper relationship with Himself... into an abundant life in Christ.

Let me go back and say that I've had a list, or maybe I'd call it notes, on the ways God would have to change this man in order for anything to change in our interaction and relationship. The list is rather specific. As the months went on following the stroke and I continued to be a friend and guard my heart, God started to give me glimpses into changes He was making in this man's life. It was truly remarkable. Slowly I started to realize I was mentally checking things off of my list. He was becoming the man I had dreamed about... a man who knows that pursuing God above all else is most important, a strong spiritual leader who devours God's Word, a man who deals with areas of weakness and seeks the Lord's forgiveness, a man who is bold enough to challenge me to know God better... and the list goes on...

And then, he started to pursue me... WHAT JOY it is to be pursued by a godly man!

The pursuit has continued... he has apologized and asked my forgiveness for the past - for the ways he hurt me, mostly unknowingly... and he has called my mom and apologized and asked her forgiveness! Our relationship and communication is amazing... far beyond what it ever was in the past!

And so, over ten years after first journaling that I might have a crush on a certain professor, I think I might actually marry the man. Two years ago I think I would have told you that I was almost positive God had a different plan for me. I never imagined the plan He had.

What a story... there is so much more than I've even written tonight...

Not sure I would have chosen this path if I was choosing ahead of time... but I am so thankful for the path God has chosen. God has done and is doing above and beyond what I thought was possible... "Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think." Eph. 3:20

It's not easy to trust... not easy to let Him have control... but it's exciting to see what He does when we allow Him to work his mighty power in us.

What might the future hold???

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Once again it's been months since I've updated my blog. I would like to try to be more faithful with writing in the coming weeks and months. We'll see... :)

A month ago, a friend of mine had a stroke. He is just 42 years old... an amazing musician. Right now he cannot use his left side... cannot move his fingers to play the piano, cannot use his leg to walk. It has caused me to step back and gain some perspective. How quickly I take life and my abilities for granted. What would my response be if I suddenly lost my abilities to walk, move, play my oboe, play the piano, direct my bands? The grace of God is what has sustained me this far... and it's His grace alone that sustains me now and will in the future, no matter what may come.

Trials have a way of deepening faith. My hope and prayer is that this trial in his life is deepening his faith and relationship with the Lord. And I pray that for all who have been impacted by this.

Suffering produces perserverance...
perservance produces character...
character produces hope...

(from Romans 5)

May we not take God's blessings for granted.


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

It's been a while since I've posted... haven't really thought too much about this blog, and I'm not really sure anyone reads it. I'm ok with that. I think I just started it to share some thoughts and know that maybe God could use the glimpses into my relationship with Him to encourage someone else.

Much has happened in the past few months - many good and exciting things!

... One of my good friends got married and I had the privilege of being in her wedding...
... I bought a house!!...
... School finished and I am enjoying summer...
... Another good friend had a baby girl on my birthday...
... I am taking my final class for my Masters degree...

And with all of these good and exciting things comes apathy... why does that seem to happen? Why is it that when life is going ok and coming together it is so easy to put God in the back and instead take personal control? Forgive me, Lord. The poem I posted on my very first blog entry is relevant to this thought. "Valley of Vision". It is true that when we are in the low places -- the valleys of life where the darkness seems more present than the light -- it is then that God's glory shines in greater contrast to our darkness. "In the daytime stars can be seen from the deepest wells, and the deeper the wells, the greater thy stars shine."

Lord, I desire to see You and grow in my relationship with you. Yet, it scares me to ask You to show me who You are... because I don't really desire pain or hardship or sadness or difficulty. Yet, more than not desiring those things, I do desire to know You above all. So, if growing in my relationship with You requires you leading me through a valley, I trust You and I will follow. Aahhh... there is a war inside of me when I say this! Because I really DON'T desire a valley! And I guess growth doesn't always happen in a valley, so, Lord, I'd love if we could continue to grow our relationship on the high planes and mountains. More than anything, Lord, direct me steps in Your perfect plan and path for my life.

"O my Savior, help me.
I am slow to learn, so prone to forget, so weak to climb;
I am in the foothills when I should be on the heights;
I am pained by my graceless heart,
My prayerless days,
My poverty of love,
My sloth in the heavenly race,
My sullied conscience,
My wasted hours,
My unspent opportunities.
I am blind while light shines around me:
Take the scales from my eyes
Grind to dust the evil heart of unbelief.
Make it my chieftest joy to study thee,
Meditate on thee,
Gaze on thee,
Sit like Mary at thy feet,
Lean like John on thy breast,
Appeal like Peter to thy love,
Count like Paul all things dung.
Give me increase and progress in grace so that there may be
As I have a position in the world,
Keep me from making the world my position.
May I never seek in the creature
What can be found only in the Creator,
Let not faith cease from seeking thee until it vanishes into sight.
Ride forth in me, thou King of Kings and Lord of Lords,
That I may live victoriously, and in victory attain my end.

from "The Valley of Vision"

Saturday, April 5, 2008


This idea of trusting in, resting on, surrendering to the Lord isn't easy. It is uncomfortable at times... like now. Yet, it's freeing. I can play and pour out my heart knowing my Savior rejoices over me. I can respond to His love and grace and bask in His delight. Dancing with Jesus!