Monday, February 14, 2011

My funny Valentine

I think everyone likes to think that they have the best love story.  And you know what?  I think they do.  Every single person….has the best story.  Because our God is a might God, a wonderful God, and a creative God.  He can make all love stories the best love story.

I’ve been reflecting a lot on my relationship with Andy, and on the relationships of my sweet friends.  I feel like there are common themes that run through them—stories of funny things, of not so random happenings, and stories of healing and hope.  I think that might be what makes a love story the best story—there really is a happy ending.  I want our kids and grandkids to know our story—to know how we came to be.  So I want to record it here.


He was supposed to be a pilot.  It’s all he ever dreamed of.  He wanted to join the military and fly planes.  College would come eventually for him, but not right after high school.

Until a skull fracture in the sixth grade ended that.  The words, “You can do anything you want, except fly a plane.” I’m sure it was a crushing feeling for that sweet boy.  Even then, the military dream lived on.  He switched high schools to join the JROTC program, spent his high school days working out and preparing. 

Until the once and short lived epilepsy diagnosis ended that.  His dreams changed, his plans changed. God had different plans for him.  He ended up at Purdue, living in the midst of an incredible group of men who were living  life sold out for God.  And he began to change.

His heart changed, his life changed.  He was bold.  He was loud.  Those probably weren’t new things. But he was bold and loud for the Lord.  And he declared loudly to all who would listen that he would be a BTR—a bachelor to the rapture.


She was going to go to college anywhere but Purdue, and become anything but a teacher.  The obstinate words spoken by a snotty teenager who thought that being like her parents would a bad thing.  No Purdue because that’s where her dad had gone.  Not a teacher because her mom was one. 

Until her senior year of high school.  When she realized that she wanted to teach English.  And a visit to Purdue for the weekend left her with the incredible sense of belonging—that Purdue’s campus was THE campus for her.

So she was going to Purdue, but she was leaving for college with her own set of plans.  She was going to do her own thing.  She was prepared to give up on God and the church and all that went with it.  The taste in her mouth was a bad one.  One filled with rules and the constant reminder to “just be nice to everyone” and you’ll be a good Christian.  She had seen plenty of un-nice people claiming to be Christians and she didn’t want anything to do with it.  It had turned her into a bit of a self-righteous snot.  She really wasn’t very sweet.

Until she arrived on campus.  In some stroke of genius, she was placed on the eighth floor of McCutcheon hall on the boys side.  Now, her floor was all girls, but the other seven on that side were all boys.  It was anything but a pleasant experience.  The boys elevators break more…smell worse…and living on the boy’s side is just a general nightmare.  She hated it.  Until one night, a pair of girls invited her to a Bible study on the other side.  She was so desperate to get off her side of the building that she jumped at the chance.  She dug around until she found a Bible she had packed and dusted it off.  At that moment, it didn’t matter that she didn’t care for churchy things…she was leaving her floor for an hour.

Because of that night, her heart changed.  Her life changed.  She saw people truly living for God for the first time in her life.  She saw the gospel being lived out, and she understood that her earlier experiences were not with the God of the Bible.


He was being a Bachelor to the Rapture.  She was learning what it meant to really follow God, and dating a boy from back home.
Until one fateful Thursday evening, and a prayer walk outside Elliot Hall of Music.  She was there, a scared freshman totally out of her element because a friend pestered her into it.  He was there, totally in his element—doing ministry like it was his life.  Because it was.  He climbed a tree and cut her finger.  It’s the first thing she remembers about him.  But they didn’t really meet that night.

The following Monday, they met for real.  He thought she was older.  And cute.  She thought he was intense.  He asked her if she wanted to help him take down a sign, and let her use a hammer.  He hugged her when they said good-bye and she thought that was a little weird.  The following weekend, she realized how incredibly kind and wonderful he was.  It was Fall Retreat 2003, and he went out of his way to make her feel welcome.  She could not get over how nice he was. 

Over the next few months, he decided that she was the girl he would marry.  She slowly came to realize that she cared for him.  She tried to deny it for a long time (remember the boy back home?  Yeah.).

Until finally.  Things worked out.  God opened both their eyes and hearts, and brought them to the same place. 

Eventually, late that December, their stories combined.  They began dating.  And neither one has looked back ever since

Stay tuned for Part II—coming Valentines Day 2012 (if I remember).

1 comment:

Snap, Crackle & Pop said...

Luckily, it only took one meeting for him to get her sister's approval (which nobody had ever truly done before). :)

I love both of you. But more importantly, I love who you are together. I can't wait to meet Liam...he is going to have fantastic parents and I am excited to be part of his life.