Just a glimpse…………………. into my “Love story” ❤️
It all started from a place of “Once upon a Time” when I met the love of my life, my high school sweetheart, the one I knew I would live happily ever after with for the rest of my life. (At least from the understanding that you can have as a 15 year old with dreams for life and a future of forever.) After dating for 3 1/2 years through high school, we married, went to Bible school, into the ministry, had 2 wonderful sons and an adventurous life.
There were ups and downs through life that helped to develop and define who we were, but most of the down times came from outside events and people, not the inside of an incredible fun filled marriage and family. We were told by many through our 32 years of marriage that we were an incredible example of what life and marriage should truly be about. We were humbled by this and somewhat surprised that it was not a difficult thing for us.
I often said that we had a supernatural marriage as we learned how to be very compatible. We each favored one another and loved pleasing the other. We kept our relationship alive by what most people described as being constant newlyweds. Since I am one who gives my all in anything I truly love, commit to and make covenant with, I did just that. I found great satisfaction in being a helpmeet, submitting, doing and serving those that God had entrusted into my life to care for.
Our marriage was not at all one sided, as I was greatly spoiled. I did not know how much cream I put into my coffee, how to pump my own gas or how to get places that were beyond my scope of direction in about a 15 mile radius. (I often jokingly said that I could never leave my husband because the best I could do was to go sit in the backyard.) I was often surprised with gifts, many at work that made the other girls jealous. They would make fun as they saw him coming in the front door with flowers, a cup of coffee or something else in his hands. We loved life, loved being together 24/7 with no apologies.
We had traveled on the road as evangelists with our 2 sons for many years and loved it. (or at least most of it.) We helped each other do everything. I was “helped” with the housework and I helped with yard and ministry office tasks as we saw this as a means of getting it done quickly so we could go have fun and do what we wanted to do. There weren’t many places that you would see us apart. My husband even liked going to women’s conferences because they were usually much deeper than what the men put on. We both loved God with all our heart, had the same passions and enjoyed life fully.
Generally when you make plans for your life……you usually just assume that you will follow and fulfill all that God speaks to you and shows you to do. You assume, that you will grow old together and enjoy all the things you have found fun in life as long as you are able to continue to do them. BUT—We had no idea that all our plans, dreams and every part of life was about to make an abrupt change when a diagnosis of stage 4B colon cancer came at us on January 14, 2013.
We were totally caught off guard as we had been strolling along doing life as normal when our world was shaken. I had known of Spiritual Warfare many times before, as I had often been engaged for my family and our future. But all of a sudden this was huge. You better believe that I jumped into the place of defense when my best friend, lover and partner was under attack. On one occasion, I actually got up on the hospital bed to remind him of a sermon that he preached about David and Goliath: (When David picked up the stone to initiate his faith as the giant was coming down, God joined in to manifest his power behind it to see the enemy defeated.) So, I stood over the top of his bed declaring that if he picked up the stone I would help him to throw it but he had to pick up the stone…..He looked up me and smiled and said, “I Love Your Passion.”
I gave it all I had during the next 6 months, with no regrets or ever feeling that I didn’t give everything I had. Even during the times I felt weary and wasn’t sure if I had it in me, I stood guard as others engaged in this raging battle as well. There wasn’t a moment in time that I wasn’t faithful to my post as a watchman, intercessor and defender. After all, my life was at stake here as well. I was fully aware that if my best friend didn’t make it through this, that I would be unsure of what the future held for me. I had chosen a life of being completely dedicated to the cause of my family and the ministry that God had given us. I liked being in the background to just support and cover in prayer. But now all that was being threatened.
On July 9, 2013, 6 months later everything changed.——The battle that I had given my life for, didn’t end the way that I thought that it would. I have to say that I was crushed.
My faith had remained strong with never a doubt that my God was going to heal my partner. In an already weakened place, the enemy threw every dart he could at me, causing me to question and be offended at the God I loved. It was difficult for me to understand why, (as we stood on the word in truth and belief), that God didn’t come to my rescue and answer my prayers the way we felt He should.
During the next 6 months I wrestled and fought with the God I love. He was so gracious and long suffering to put up with my childish behavior, as I told Him I didn’t like where He had left me in this situation. I told Him I knew how to get under the shadow of His wings but His feathers were poking me. It is truly a miserable place to wrestle with the God you love. Again He was so patient with me to allow me to throw my tantrum. I knew He was close by and at times I would acknowledge Him but tell Him not to touch me.
When your heart is “broken,” God can pour in the healing balm of Gilead, but He didn’t promise that it would not burn or be painful.
You see, as we pass through His fire of love, if you keep going, you won’t get burnt, only refined. That is the part that we usually do not like. His goal is always to make us more like Him.
WHAT I HAD NOT SEEN……
As much as I loved MY beloved, I have one that loves me much more than I could EVER love. As hard as I fought for MY beloved….I have one that fought harder for me than I could EVER fight. The same love that I gave over a lifetime, is the same devoted love that Jesus gives to me. The same way I stood over to declare and fight, was the same intensity that Jesus fought for me during the days of my struggle.
The one who knows me best and is the “true lover of my soul”, He walked me through the most difficult thing that I had ever experienced. He held my hand even when I tried to pull away. This is the ultimate “LOVE STORY”! He is the LOVER of OUR soul that doesn’t give up on us, who is relentless and contends for us until we finally recognize His goodness on the other side of our circumstances.
If there were more time…..there are so many God kisses, God encounters and little details that I would love to share with you that happened during this incredible journey with the only one that can truly love me.