Our Love Story ~

From my prospective:

I had heard that our “College and Twenty somethings” group from church was taking a trip to a lake in Montana. There was talk of going out on a boat, so I was all in! We had gone up to visit my grandma that week (about 2 hour drive) so we could help her with a few projects she needed my Dad and brothers for. We ended up spending more time than expected at my Gram’s, and were in a rush to get back home so I could catch the car pool up to the lake. Well, we hit construction which had us delayed for an hour. I missed the car pool. Although I was disappointed that my hopes of going out on a boat were dashed, by the time we got home, I had accepted the fact I wasn’t going to get to go this time.

The next morning (June 27, 2009), my Dad woke up and insisted they drive me up to the lake. I reassured him I was okay not going, and they didn’t have to make a special trip just for me. I feel this is an appropriate time to mention my Dad has an intense love of fishing. Coupled with the fact that it was a BEAUTIFUL summers day, I knew that we were headed up the the lake one way or another! So we drove and drove, following the narrow dirt road along the edge of the river. After a few stops for directions, we found the little winding road down to the lake with a “Shalom” sign posted outside. This was it! I jumped out, got all my bags situated in “the boat house” (a very nice little cabin above where the boat is stored) and headed over to the deck to soak up some rays with my friends.

The Cabin

Okay, so here’s this situation: I was sitting in a deck chair, facing a big patio table and the entrance to where the stairs come up from the beach. Some friends were spread out in their deck chairs telling stories from the day. We had a beautiful view of the lake and could see some friends splashing around out on the Sea-Doo. There I was, minding my own business, when I saw him. He came up the stairs from the beach below (and I claim he was wearing a white shirt at this point but Josh will argue he wasn’t and it was his muscles that first grabbed me). I caught a glimpse of him… and looked away. He had grey swim trunks on and was smiling a charming smile, talking with someone as he walked to the deck. “He’s handsome. I have never seen him before.” was my first thought. After a few minutes of trying to avoid eye contact, Cam (who’s cabin we were at) said “Have you met my brother Josh yet?” I said no, and we both smiled and waved ‘Hi’. Then I saw his cross necklace and thought, “I think he is a Christian too!” immediately followed by “Oh no! I like him.” Naturally, I decided to make it a point to avoid him the rest of the weekend. Cuz who needs that drama? I mean really! I actually remember praying several times that day “Oh Lord, I pray that up until this point of my life I have NOT met my husband yet. I pray that I still have yet to meet my husband and have not met him yet.” Or some strange repetition of “Not” “Met” and “husband.”

I did my best to go on long walks, mingle with friends, be on the lake and just generally avoid coming with in a 10 foot radius of Josh. Before we all headed to bed the first night, I remember Josh saying he had been having problems sleeping, and during my morning devotional I read Psalm 127:2 ‘In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat– for he grants sleep to those he loves.’ And I prayed and asked the The Lord give Josh sleep that night. The next morning I remember when I saw him and said that I wanted to show him a verse I found about sleep. The next day continued as usual, and despite my best efforts, he still found ways to single me out and ask my major, mysteriously land his folf (Frisbee golf) disk near mine, or offer me his shoes when we were walking on a rocky place near the beach (and I refused – which, is indeed rude – no matter how much you don’t like… I mean like… I mean have vowed to avoid someone – it is always kind to acknowledge a man’s chivalry). Anyway, the last night there we went out to dinner before heading home. I stopped at the restroom on my way to the table, and it shouldn’t have surprised me that when I came to sit with everyone, there was only one chair left. You guessed it – right next to Josh! My heart skipped a beat because I got to (ahem) I mean, had to sit next to Josh all through dinner! And he would watch me eat! (or at least girls think were being watched- and judged no less! Now, after 6 years of being together- I realize he was probably much more focused on his Orange Chicken than if I was a messy eater or not) We had good conversation through dinner, and I had learned throughout the weekend that Josh was going into his Sophomore year at the Air Force Academy in Colorado, and was home on leave for a few weeks. I secretly was hoping he would ask for my number at the end of the night. After dinner we divided up into cars for the ride home. Josh and I didn’t exchange any contact information, or really even say goodbye.

One of my very best friends, Rachel had just gotten home from a mission trip to Haiti the night we arrived home. I met her to catch up, and after we talked about the amazing things she learned on her trip, I said very seriously “Rachel, I have something to tell you. And were NEVER going to talk about it again. Okay?” She threw her head back and laughed and said “What???” and I said “Yes. And were never going to talk about it again.” Rachel agreed to our vow of silence and I spilled the beans, “I liked somebody this weekend. And were never going to talk about it again.” She got very excited- there was clapping involved – and then said “Well, who is it? Someone I know?” I told her that Cameron had a brother, and he was only visiting for a short time. She asked what he was like, and after reiterating the ‘not talking ever again’ deal I told her about the weekend. So, for over a month, we didn’t talk about it. I must admit that in this time, I told my Mom that I had liked someone (because he was on my mind all the time! Plus my Mom is basically my best friend and I can keep nothing from her) And I had one measly little picture with him in it which I would look at from time to time to try and remember what he looked like and why I liked him SO much. I also didn’t have Facebook at the time so I couldn’t look him up.

Then, in a not-so-strange turn of events, I was running a triathlon in August located in the town where Josh’s family lives. Now there was this guy named Mike, and he liked Rachel! Mike also happened to be Cam’s best friend, so he arranged for Rachel, himself and I to stay at Cam’s house for the triathlon. {Side note: Rachel did not like Mike at this time… but Mike really liked her.. and in another not-so-strange turn of events, they are now married and wonderful!} I was grateful for a place to stay and (maybe a little bit) excited to hopefully see some pictures of this Josh where his full face was in view. When we arrived at Josh’s parents house, there were pictures all over the living room and kitchen. Rachel was excited to see who I told her I “liked” a few months earlier. Rachel and I shared a bed that night, and stayed up talking and giggling. I remember her bringing up Josh, and saying something like “I know we’re never supposed to talk about this again, but…” And as I stared at the white ceiling, I had this deep feeling I couldn’t shake. I told Rach, “There was just something different about him. I don’t think I’ll ever see him again… but I never want to date someone unless I feel that way about them.”

Early October rolled around and I had a Facebook account activated. I was posting pictures from this weekend and thought that maybe I should find him! We became friends and he sent me a message! The first thing that came to my mind was, “I didn’t ever show him that verse!” So I offered to message it to him later, but he gave me his phone number and said I could text it instead. I remember texting the verse to him, and thinking “Okay, I’ve texted you the verse. Now time to never see you again.” This was not the case, however – because Mr. Josh had other plans! He proceeded to text me everyday from this point with what he called the “verse of the day.” Then, after a little while he called me! We would talk on the phone often and we shared stories and learned about each other. I couldn’t help but notice how different this was becoming than never seeing each other again. Every time I thought about him I got this butterfly feeling in the pit of my stomach. I remember getting these strong butterflies even while running!  It was at this point that I thought, “This has gone too far! Lord, show me how I need to break it off, before either one of us gets hurt! We are supposed to never see each other again remember?!”  But I felt peace come to me and a little voice said, “Go deeper.”

Dax Photography-2085

Even though I was afraid, I decided to go all in and really learn this man’s heart. I got to see his love for Jesus, his family, his country, his friends – over the next few years of dating I got to see his selfless love for me and learn what it’s like to be so highly valued and respected as a Woman. He has taught me so much about what real love looks like. And I have a better understanding of God’s love for me, being loved by him! What a magnificent gift!

We have been married around a year and a half so far, (and just moved in together for the first time! Woo!) and at this point I’d say the main theme of our time together can be summed up in the passage from Isaiah 55:8 ‘ “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.’ He has brought us to a beautiful place in our lives together! There have been, are and will be painful times. But there is no one I’d rather love through it all than you, Josh!


Dax Photography-2955


6 thoughts on “Love

  1. You two are great together! Love you and am always praying for you both! It’s nice to see what you’re up to on this blog! I makes me feel closer to you!


  2. Pingback: Some Old Photos | The Sun Shines Through It

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