It is a joy to have this opportunity to share our story of God’s great faithfulness, as has been so evident in my courtship and now engagement to my wonderful fiancé, Stephen. It is my prayer that our story will serve as an encouragement to others who may be traveling a similar path and may also be clinging tightly to the hope of the Lord’s faithfulness in their life.
In early Sept. 2009, I received an email from a reader of my online ministry blog: www.strivingtoserveathome.blogspot.com intended to encourage younger girls who, I later learned, stumbled upon my blog through a fairly random Google search. He wrote about how he was struck by my life choices in regard to living at home and desiring to be a homemaker instead of pursuing our culture’s more typical path of a college degree and full-time career.
During a week of emailing, I had the thought to Google his name to make sure his story added up, and to possibly learn more about him. As I came upon article after article expounding on this young man’s exemplary character and impressive accomplishments, I became very hopeful that the Lord may be causing him to find the slightest interest in me!
While I was enjoying getting to know him, and through his emails it became evident that he most likely was interested in me, I knew it was unwise to continue unsupervised correspondence with a young man I met online. I asked my family for their thoughts regarding this situation and decided to email Stephen telling him that I would like to get to know him better, but only with my family’s guidance and approval. I was not interested in carrying on a long-term guy/girl friendship with him and felt it was important for our relationship to be intentional.
I was pretty certain that he would think I was extremely presumptuous and archaic, and I would never hear another word from him! I was shocked and thrilled when I read the email he sent my father the following night! I was so amazed and felt so undeserving of this godly, amazing, and brilliant man’s interest.
Over the following four months, Stephen and my father corresponded over the telephone and email, discussing Stephen’s walk with the Lord and convictions that are of importance to our family. As I continued to read Stephen’s letters that were sent to my father (I checked my parents’ email address so often, that I usually read Stephen’s emails before my parents did!) and his incredible testimony of God’s saving grace in his life, I began to desire more and more that the Lord would cause him to be the man for me.
At times this felt like an unbearably long wait. I was so eager to know what the Lord’s will would be and struggled to maintain an open hand, willing to let go of Stephen if the Lord should close the door for a future relationship with him.
Finally, in early January, Stephen flew from England (where he is studying) to Virginia to meet my family and me. This was when our courtship really began to progress. We spent a week seeking the Lord’s will and getting to know each other better.
I can’t really even begin to describe how impressed I was! We began to have a great peace about our future and my father gave Stephen his full approval for pursuing marriage. Over the following two months, our relationship grew much deeper and our hearts became closely knit as we corresponded nearly every day, discussing our hopes, convictions, struggles, daily happenings, and much, much more. My love and respect for Stephen grew abundantly and rapidly. I was so eager for his next visit.
In mid-March, Stephen flew back to Virginia to spend another week with my family and me. It was the most perfect, wonderful week! On March 15, 2010, Stephen took me on a lovely trip to Monticello (Thomas Jefferson’s plantation). After we toured the home and strolled the grounds, Stephen led me to a peaceful wooded sitting area, got down on one knee, and asked me to marry him! We are so excited about our future serving the Lord together.
God used His means to bring His man into my life in His timing. All glory goes entirely to the Lord. Contrary to what many advised as necessary, I did not have to put myself out there or date an endless string of guys to get the man the Lord had already chosen for me. I simply had to live the life to which the Lord had called me. My somewhat counter-cultural life as a twenty-two year old living at home, striving to serve her family, and preparing to be a wife and mother is the very thing that Stephen says first attracted him to me.
The Lord has answered my prayers for a godly husband with a man so much greater than I ever could have imagined. I am not marrying the “man of my dreams” – my dreams were nothing compared to what God had in store for me! It is so evident that the Lord has been preparing both of us for each other for many years, shaping each of us into the one who perfectly suits and complements the other. Our vision and hopes for the future correspond beautifully.
I am so blessed to be marrying a man with a desire for us to carry out our biblical roles in our future home. He encourages me and is proud that I want to be a homemaker and helper to him and a dedicated mother to our children. I could not possibly be any more proud to be the girl at his side. I can’t wait to be his wife! Stephen prays the sweetest prayers over us and will be such a wonderful spiritual leader for our future family. We both pray that the Lord will use us mightily as a couple; that we may be a Jonathan and Sarah Edwards of our generation. I pray nearly daily that the Lord will mold me into an excellent wife for such a godly man.
“Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your name be the glory, because of Your love and faithfulness.” Psalm 115:1
“Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides You, who acts on behalf of those who wait for Him.” Isaiah 64:4