Around the time I could seriously be thinking about marriage I received an offer that would have made all of my girlish dreams of romance come true. However, the only answer I could hear from God was, “Do not settle for your dreams; run after mine.”
I chose Christ. He’s the very essence of my life. Yet, that initial choice did not stop me from lusting after romance. And God, being the jealous God he is, began calling me to a higher commitment, into a sacred romance meant for just the two of us.
After a particularly hard relationship in my early twenties (mainly the longing for one with a certain boy) I came crawling to the feet of Jesus saying, "Take this burden from me. I can't seem to stay committed to you alone. Separate me unto yourself." He answered me, "My daughter, if you truly long for this you must surrender. And you must give up not only this man but your right to choose one."
My father came to me several days later and offered, unaware of the conversation that God and I had, to take over the duty of finding me a husband.
I agreed. From that day on I left the "looking" in my father's hands and tried my best to follow God. He led me here and there--overseas, to different states, across streets and through cities.
I didn't do it perfectly. My gaze wandered many times... searching. The only allowance I gave myself was a journal written to my husband. Into that I poured my dreams, prayers and longings. Through that God drew my gaze daily back to Him. I prayed constantly: for grace to walk the path God had for me and for something to hold onto in the meantime. Then one night I had a dream. This is the abridged version:
I was standing in a group of people. They were obviously friends of mine. Every little while some would leave and others would come. I became aware of someone who was watching me. I hadn't noticed the exact time he joined the group but once my eye was caught he walked towards me.
He smiled at me, picked me up and began walking away. At first I was a bit put out. Who
was this guy? What gave him the right? But, as we walked he began to talk. He told the story of his longings and his dreams. He looked at me and said, "Share my dreams with me." I didn't know what to think.
After awhile we stopped at the top of a hill. There, out in the open, was a dance floor. It was beautiful cherry wood. Polished. Flawless. There were people standing around it but no one was dancing. The man walked into the middle of the floor then slowly set me on my feet.
"Why aren't the people dancing?" I asked him.
He looked at me and smiled, "Because this is our dance floor. I made it for you so that we could dance together."
"But you couldn't have known me when you were building this." I was confused as I looked around then back at him.
"I had the hope of you. I built it and I prayed for you; then I searched until I found you." He answered.
Right then vivid pictures flashed through my mind. Him working. Sweating. Pounding nails. Sanding. Varnishing. Work. Work. Work. Just to dance with me.
We started dancing. And I cried.
When I woke up I felt God say, "This is what I have for you." Right then, a love began growing in my heart for the man God had for me.
Amos and I knew each other for quite awhile. Or rather, knew "of" each other. It wasn't until December of 2006 that we talked directly. He was my brother's friend. A few years older than me. I knew he owned a farm. Worked on tractors. Seemed like a nice guy. Little did I know that he had been watching me for some time. In fact, I was oblivious to everything; it took my father inviting him over for dinner to open my eyes.
Even after the first dinner it took a little time to realize that he was serious. In 2007 I spent the better part of the first six months in Brazil helping a missionary family. On my return our "courtship" became serious. We didn't date in the usual sense. Mostly we talked. We talked about everything you can imagine. Our past. Our present. Our future. Our dreams. Our fears. Our nightmares. Our passions. Our visions. Our joys. Our pain. And God.
By the end of the first "intense" week of courtship I knew without a doubt that this was the man God had been telling me about. I wasn't "in love" in a worldly sense but I was completely confident that this was the man for me.
I met his parents (as his girlfriend, not just a random girl at church) and he met my extended family. Some thought we were crazy to be talking about marriage so soon, but they hadn't sat through our discussions. And they hadn't watched every promise from God play out in our lives.
I chose to love him. It wasn't an emotional choice; it was definitely a factual decision. I was attracted to him physically, emotionally, and most importantly, spiritually. This was it.
He took me to his farm. Settled at the top of the hill. So beautiful. He told me how much he had prayed for someone to share his life with him. The picture of the dance floor from my dream drifted across my vision. And I fell. I mean... head-over-heels, crazy-can't-see-straight, I-can't-believe-he's-mine IN LOVE. Not because his farm is so beautiful (although I do love it) but because I recognized him from my dream. And all that love that had been growing and building up for the man who would care for me so deeply... spilled out.
He proposed on the farm. In the living room of his house. I said yes.
My father's approval had been given from the start. He HAD invited him over for dinner after all!
How could I say anything else when God had so carefully orchestrated our love story from the very beginning?
Lowville, New York, USA
Printed in Above Rubies # 75.