Valentine’s Day. You love it when you have someone to love, and you hate it when you don’t. Valentine’s day means something different to everyone. To some it is just a lame Hallmark holiday, to another it a great opportunity to shower the one you love with admiration. To many, Valentine’s Day is another reminder that you’re alone.
For this Valentines, I am blessed to spend it with my fiancé, but it wasn’t long ago that I remember wishing, hoping, and praying that the Lord would send me the one HE created for me. There were many days I was tired of waiting, sick of crying, and wishing I didn’t feel so lonely. I’m sure there are many that are alone and can’t relate, but others that may be saying, “YES! I know the feeling!” So to those people, this is for you. This is my story.
Learning the definition of love
All through high school and part of college, I always in a relationship. Looking back, there was something missing in all of them. I was so tired of the rollercoaster of emotions, so one day I made up my mind that I wouldn’t date anyone else and that I was going to wait for my future husband. I began seeking the Lord about my future husband and who HE had for me. I didn’t want to date just to date, so I told myself the next person I was going to be with was my future husband.
My perspective changed the day that I read the scripture found in Isaiah 54:5, “For your Maker is your husband; the Lord Almighty is His name.” I realized that no one could EVER love me the way the Lord does. He would NEVER leave me, nor forsake me. I had a deep revelation in my heart that day that I needed to learn of the Lord’s perfect love for me first and foremost. A love that is so unconditional; not based on my performance, a never ending, and a never changing love. I wanted to know my maker as my husband so that when I did get married, that man would never be the ultimate source of my fulfillment, worth, or identity. That began a three-year journey. Those three years were the best years of my life, but also some of the most trying.
I began writing down very specifically what I desired in my future husband. The Lord showed me in his word that I have not because I ask not and how he delights in giving me the desires of my heart. I focused on the character traits that I desired for my mate: generous, patient, sensitive, funny, caring, etc. I began thanking God daily for this man. The more that I fell in love with the Lord, the greater my expectations grew. When I learned of the Lord's character, I had a greater knowing of what I desired in my future husband.
Renewing My MindSome days were amazing as I learned God’s fulfilling love, but there were many days that the enemy would lie to me that I would never find someone to love me, my standards were too high, etc, etc. Almost daily I had to renew my mind to the truth of God’s word and cast down lies that I would never get married, no one would love me, and so on. When fear would take over, I had to imagine myself walking down the aisle. (Your imagination is POWERFUL and can truly set the course of your life!) I would renew my mind to God’s word and speak these scriptures out daily:
“Lord, I thank you that your word says in Psalm 37:4 that, “You delight in giving us the desires of our hearts.” Your word promises us that, “You withhold no good thing to those that love you.” –Psalm 84:11. I thank you that marriage is a good thing and you will bless me with this gift of marriage. Psalm 18:22 says that, “A man who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.”
During this time there were guys that would approach me and I would wonder if he was the one. After all, they were Christian men who loved the Lord. But sure enough, there was a lack of peace I felt in my heart. I decided once again to say “no” and continue on my path to who the Lord had for me. After all, I knew the Lord would bless me for my patience and diligence in seeking him. I knew this singleness could be one of the best times of my life, if that’s what I believed. The Word says, “I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.” -1 Corinthians 7:32. I began changing my perspective and seeing this singleness as a blessing.
There were many times during my singleness that people, even those most close to me, would say to me, “How are you going to find someone if you never go out? How will you find him if you don’t date?” “Are you waiting for the mailman to show up and sweep you off your feet?” I would simply respond, “If that’s how God will bring him, then sure! I knew if God created me so intricately and detailed, he is creative enough to bring him in to my life. I didn’t have to worry about how it was going to happen… I knew that the Lord had that all planned out, every detail.
There were also people that would say, “Why don’t you just date so-and-so. He loves the Lord and treats you wonderfully.” That would sometimes cause me confusion and I would sometimes question the same thing. However, I knew what I believed for and if he was anything less, it wasn’t the right one. I believed for a man of God who knew his authority, who would pray for me, who would fight for me when the enemy was attacking, and one who was strong in the Lord.
I knew my story would be different than how this world does things. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is- his good, pleasing, and perfect will.” – Romans 12:1-2
Prepare Me Lord
As I prayed daily for the preparation of my future husband, one day the Lord spoke to me about preparing myself and that this was a time that I was to draw close to the Lord, learn of his Word, who I am in Christ, and what it meant to be a Godly wife. He showed me he wanted to do a work in me, to strip me of hurts from my past. The Lord brought me to this quote, “Young women who devote themselves to the Lord prepare themselves for the future by gaining wisdom first, then stepping carefully when the time is right.”
I knew that I would get to that point where I didn’t need anyone to fill me and that the Lord would be enough. I knew once I got to that point, the Lord would bring him to me. One of my favorite quotes through this time was, “ A woman’s heart should be so hidden in God that a man has to see Him just to find her.” -Lucado
On March 17th I was apart of an event with a local evangelist, Chris Palmer. I was asked to be apart of the team and greet guests as they came into the event. I knew no one, and only recently met Chris. That morning my sister said, “Who knows… maybe Chris will have a friend you’ll meet.” I just laughed her off. I went with the simple intention of drawing closer to the Lord. The night of the event, I was introduced to everyone on the team, including Chris's good friend, Brett. Before the event started, I asked Brett if he wanted any coffee to kill time. The first thing I remember about Brett is how generous he was as he bought coffee for just about everyone on the team. He opened doors, paid for my coffee, and made me laugh the entire time. When the service began, Brett was in charge of the set up and making sure everything ran smoothly inside the service. However, Brett found his way to the front doors that night and was continuously checking to see if I "needed anything". He ended up neglecting his duties and just couldn't help but to stick around the doors with me. The hour of greeting was filled with laughter and conversation.
That night my sister asked how the night went and I responded very shortly, “Good! I met a lot of cool people. One of Chris’s friends had me laughing so hard. I felt like I had known him my entire life.” I began walking away and she responded, “Uhhhh... Who is this guy!?” Once again, I just laughed her off. I didn’t think much of it.
Brett got my number that night to see if we could all hang out as a team the following night. Although I turned down the offer, Brett and I began texting very casually. After a month or so of us casually talking, Brett invited me to a church service with him and Chris. As I sat by him that night, the pastor had told us to lay our hand on the person next to us and start praying for each other. Brett laid his hand on my shoulder and began praying for me. I couldn’t get a word to come out of my mouth. I just cried. I cried with an overwhelming sense of joy as I realized he could be the one. There was just a deep knowing in my spirit.
Throughout the next couple of weeks as we grew closer, I prayed to the Lord and asked him to confirm that I was to continue talking to him. I didn’t want to date anyone for even a day if I didn’t know 100%. I opened my Bible to the scripture that said, "the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace" (Romans 8:6). That spoke volumes to me. Although we often want God to speak to us in a loud booming voice from heaven, typically the Lord speaks to us by giving us peace or a lack thereof. I knew what a lack of peace felt like, for I felt it in all my past relationships. So, I approached every single day with Brett… “Do I have peace today?”
As I got to know Brett, I was amazed daily how he truly was everything and MORE that I had prayed for. You know what drew me to him first and foremost? His heart for the Lord. Everything else followed after that. Brett is one of the most caring, selfless, sensitive, generous, loving, and handsome men I have ever met. He puts the Lord first and truly pastors me and loves me as the Lord does. He showers me with love and makes me feel like a queen. Every door is opened before I can put my hand on it. Not a day goes by without him speaking his love to me. He prays for me with such power and authority and encourages me with the Word. But you know what is cool? God has fulfilled me in the past few years that I can honestly say that God is my source. I don’t get my worth or fulfillment from Brett. His love is just a representation of Jesus’ love for me.
It’s been just 11 months since the day I met Brett and I now have a ring on my left hand to signify our soon-to-be life together. I truly believe God created marriage as a good thing. The Word says, “It is not good that Man should be alone; I will make him a helpmate.” –Genesis 2:18. “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.”-Ecclesiastes 4:9.
I pray that my story encouraged you today, wherever you are in your journey. The Lord cares so much about every detail of your life. He put the desires in your heart. The more that you seek Him, the more your desires will become His. Don’t try to get ahead of God by trying to figure out how it is going to happen. Trust that if He created this earth and everything in it in such intricate detail, that he has your life planned and figured out. It will be beyond anything you can ever dream, ask, or imagine. Our God is so faithful.