On the morning of June 15, 2013, I joined ChristianMingle as B_1959, and only a few short weeks later, (July 18th to be exact), I saw Papa_x5’s photo appear in a small window on the screen and immediately clicked on his profile to find out more. Just as I reached the end of adjectives used to describe the man whose image had caught my attention, a green light indicated he had logged on. How good is that for timing, right? After arguing with myself for a few brief minutes on whether or not to instant message, I courageously raised an index finger, brought it down slowly over the keyboard allowing it to hover for several seconds, hesitated once more, then single-clicked to request chat while subconsciously holding my breath. I waited an eternity of thirty seconds before his reply came back. A decision he will NEVER live down I assure you…lol…he responded with “later.”
“Later? Later? Seriously? Oh well…on to the next,” I said mentally to soothe the momentary wound of disappointment. Shortly after getting my heart broken, okay I’m exaggerating, I mean, “later,” I received an email. It was from him! “Oh yeah… he is as smart as he looked,” my recovering ego heralded, removing any residual particles of false rejection I may have felt earlier. I was ecstatic to say the least!
Anyway, from a human, or “fleshly”, perspective, that’s how it began. We have no doubt however, that a loving God had been orchestrating and preparing us both individually for some time prior to all of this.
You see, Jim was a widower who had faithfully stood beside his late wife, and high school sweetheart, of almost thirty-five years, before losing her to cancer. I was the discarded, emotionally abused wife of a once-professed Christian man who chose to divorce rather than work at restoring health to an eighteen-year union. So, there were vast differences in regard to how, and why, we had ended up on a Christian dating site at our age but, we had both travelled the emotionally difficult, Christ dependent, growth filled, necessary road to healing and recovery after sustaining tragic loss, and we had both arrived at the same prayerful, hopeful, faith decision to trust God and open ourselves up and become vulnerable to love again.
The connection we felt through this commonality, in combination with the essential foundation of individually committed relationships to Christ, is what prompted us forward. Okay, maybe that’s not completely honest either. It was for that reason and the fact that we, (uncharacteristically for us both), fell immediately, deeply, and hopelessly in hope with each other and believed it to be a “God thing”.
Ha! You thought I was going to say love, right? Well, hold on…there’s more.
Once we heard each other’s voice on the phone, we knew. I mean, I knew that I knew, but wasn’t sure if he knew. He knew that he knew, but wasn’t sure if I knew…you know?
Anyway, we had both obviously sensed something, because, a face-to-face meeting jumped all other priorities on the calendar and we swiftly set a date of July 23, 2013.
What originally was intended to be a quick, introductory cup of coffee at a public location, beginning at 10:00 am, turned into an enchanting lunch date, followed by an afternoon hike date, followed by a quiet rest near a soft flowing river under a tree near the entrance of the park date. Here we watched other hikers go by, asked questions, listened to each other’s heart, and formulated a dinner date. This date was followed by a reluctant farewell, an, “I already miss you”, good night phone call date, that led into one long, can’t shut my brain off, super sweet sleepless night.
The result of those consecutive dates was followed by, “We must be crazy, Lord. We’re acting like silly teenagers”, followed with, “Are we going too fast, God? Can we really be this sure so quickly?”, followed by, “’YES! We can! YES, we are sure!”, followed on January 4, 2014, with “I do’s.”
Yes, we are married! For those keeping track, it was 2 weeks short of 6 months from our ‘ChristianMingle’ assisted, God arranged, happenstance before we “officially” become man and wife.
However, please do not misconstrue our story as an endorsement for short engagements. We did not plan it the way it turned out, and would not recommend short engagements in most instances. There is much to be said for getting to really know a person before stepping into a commitment of marriage magnitude. It is merely what, surprisingly, happened to us. Trust me, I had everything planned out differently. Then, as the saying goes, “God laughed”. And I am so thankful He did! His abundant blessings ensued. For Jim and me, our relationship fell into sync effortlessly, and thankfully, that effortlessness has not altered. For the first time in our lives we are re-examining our skepticism, as well as criticisms, over the concept of a “soul mate”. We connected on so many different levels and in so many different ways it took us both wholly by surprise. Our differences create balance, intensify humor which induces energizing laughter that we pray will accompany many more, happy, loving memories to this life-long honeymoon we prayed for and that God initiated. We are blessed.
Thank you for allowing us to “ChristianMingle” our thoughts, to relate our story, and for another opportunity to give God the glory!