I was beginning to think I would be alone forever. I had spent years
searching for the woman that everyone assured me that God had picked out
for me. Many of these folks were women who assured me that I was quite a
catch, and according to them, some woman was going to be very lucky to have
me -- as long as that woman wasn't them. As you can imagine, this constant
rejection resulted in resentment, bitterness, and depression.
Though I did not know it, these very attitudes were preventing me from
finding the woman that God had, in fact, designed for me. Only after I had
begun to actively seek to know Him in a real and personal way did He show
me these things. He made me aware of the depth of the pain and bitterness.
Up to that point, I had merely stuffed those things back down inside. But now
it was time to get rid of it altogether -- something that could only be done
by turning it all over to Jesus Christ. Through Him, all of those painful
memories were put to death, the root of bitterness was destroyed, and I was
free to forgive everyone that had hurt me in the past.
I told God that I was now going to rely on Him to provide companionship for
me. My primary focus was still on getting to know Him better. It was my
belief that once my relationship with God was strengthened, my relationships
with people would also improve.
I had been advised that any relationship I was to develop should be centered
on Christ. At the time, I didn't really know what that meant. I was in the
process of learning what it meant to center my own life on Christ. I asked
God to build that understanding in me. He did so by introducing me to a
variety of people of varying spiritual awareness. As I learned to interact
with others who were seeking to be Christ-centered, our common desires to
grow spiritually led us to encourage each other in searching to know Christ.
During all this, God tested my submission to His guidance. It is not enough
to simply say that God has the control of every situation. He expects us to
act like we believe it. I was given the opportunity to act like I meant what
I said. My natural reaction to difficult circumstances would have been anger,
resentment, and bitterness. But since giving all that up to God, He gave me
the strength to live it. For the first time, I was actually at peace about
being rejected. I had given the situation to God, and I knew that He was
taking care of the details. I offered it all up to Him again, telling Him
that I wanted His will for my life.
God worked His will marvelously by introducing me to Emily. At last I know
that God did indeed design a woman specifically for me. And even better, He
designed me specifically for her. We are both very excited about growing to
spiritual maturity in Christ. We complete each other. God blessed us both by
building our relationship from the inside out. Starting by creating hearts
of love for Himself, He then knit our souls inextricably together in a
growing relationship with each other. We are currently
engaged to be
married, and we are both looking forward to a life of spiritual growth
and service together as we work with God in the
furtherance of His kingdom.
On May 18, 1998 Emily and I were married.
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