*These upcoming posts are a gift to my husband, a legacy I pray my children will model and an act of gratitude to God for the beautiful gift of marriage. To all those who desire to find love in His way and in His time, stay with me as I publish written prayers to God penned during the year I spent loving Wouter in the silence of my heart…waiting on God’s perfect timing.
I’m going to make a personal statement about it right here; one that many of you will disagree with but one that I am going to stick by.
Please know that I’m not judging anyone with differing convictions.
Are you ready?
I am not quite sure that dating is God’s best plan for the prelude to marriage.
I’ve dated a lot, Christian guys included. All that ever came from getting emotionally and romantically involved with someone God did not intend for me to marry, was hurt. Either I was wounded or my significant other was.
When we expose sacred places of the heart in an uncommitted relationship, we risk the pain of rejection. Rejection runs deep and healing takes time.
I believe God wants to protect us from that. Personally, I have made many mistakes in this area and although God has forgiven me, the work of restoration continues even in the midst of my healthy marriage.
In a day and age where marriage is not regarded as sacred and dating without true commitment is trendy, I feel inspired and compelled to share God’s work in my life in this area. As Christians, we really need to allow God to work through us and in us so that we model Godly relationships and healthy marriages to a world that frowns upon virtuous love.
I truly hope that my story inspires you to trust the Lord for your future spouse and if you’re married already, I hope you simply enjoy reading a God-old Fashioned love story!
By way of introduction, if you’re familiar with my posts on Shame or Doubt, you’ll see that men have caused me a lot of trouble over the years…they’ve always been a weakness of mine. I know I’m not alone. Who doesn’t want to be loved? To feel beautiful; desired and worthy of someone’s affection? Let’s be honest: we all do.
I never really knew that I could place my trust in the Lord and allow Him to bring my husband to me. I thought it was my responsibility to go out and look for him. If I wasn’t actively looking for my soul mate, how would we ever cross paths?
The concept of God bringing my beloved to me when He saw fit only became a possibility after I committed my time to the Lord. Notice I didn’t say “life” to the Lord. Yes, it was my time. I gave God my days, my hours, even my minutes and I surrendered my “man-hunt” to Him. I asked Him to arrange my marriage and I trusted that He would do it. Why not? If there’s a gifted match maker out there, it would be God, Right?
Giving this part of my world over to the Lord was not an easy task. In fact, as many times as I placed it on the alter, I picked it back up again out impatience, mistrust and rebellion. After a long season of wrestling with the Lord I came to a place of rest and was satisfied in my relationship with God. I came to see singleness as His gift to me during that season.
I felt at peace. And I waited on Him.
It was the beginning of November, 2003 and I was in Istanbul, Turkey commencing my two year commitment on board the Ship, “Doulos” with the Christian Missions Organization: Operation Mobilization. As a new recruit, dating was prohibited during the first year and strict regulations regarding opposite sex interaction were in place in order to protect ship’s workers from falling into inappropriate relationships. (To get a better understanding of the context, you may want to read this.)
Although, I knew I wasn’t allowed to date nor did I want to entertain fantasies about anyone, I did want to talk to the Lord about my future husband. I wanted Him to know the desires of my heart and I knew He could be trusted with all my secrets. And so, like a daughter who dreams out loud while her Daddy sits in her company I poured out my heart…
Here’s my prayer…
Lord, I believe you have a man for me. And I believe he is a man of purpose with your Kingdom in his heart. He has a divine calling…to equip, challenge and encourage young believers…He is sold out for you. He seeks your face early in the morning even before he looks at mine. May he be a strong man without fear, a natural leader, a profound speaker…an intellectual, a musician. I pray that his love for you extends far beyond his love for anything in this world…
Toward me, I pray that he is always gut-level honest yet sensitive to my needs always challenging me to higher level of Godliness. Let his laughter be frequent and yet sensitive to the needs of the moment; understanding the importance of being serious. May he be one who listens…with a heart of compassion and genuine interest in others.
I pray that he would encourage me to seek you all my days.
I know you can raise up a man like this for me! Lord, you can do anything!
By faith, I believe this is what you’ve put on my heart and I trust that you will bring it to pass.
Yes…the above prayer was written before I knew Wouter personally and even now, I cannot believe how accurate it is…So amazing to know that God is at work.