“I will never move back to Alabama and I will never marry someone from my hometown!” Those were my famous last words as I finished my remaining year of college in 2008.
As college approached an end, and the job market proved unstable, I decided to move back home to Alabama after being away at school for many years.
While my parents were more than happy to accommodate my decision, I was a bit uncertain about the choice. For instance, I was confident there were not any date-worthy men from my small hometown. However, when my best friends from college encouraged me to join a dating website, I looked into it.
I knew I didn’t want to meet just anyone, so I spent time searching for a Christian site and found ChristianMingle®.com. Believe it or not, I immediately spotted a very handsome and kind looking man, living only 30 minutes away. He said that he, “Likes dogs, but cats are tolerable,” and so I knew as far as pets were concerned, we would get along. The words, “Never say, ‘never’” resounded in my brain as I read his profile and realized he grew up just a mere ten miles from my very own hometown.
Several messages later, Chase and I had our first date on Valentine’s weekend. I will never forget how excited and hopeful he looked as the front door opened and I saw him for the first time in person. His eyes twinkled.
After just a few weeks, I knew Chase was special and different from past relationships. Within a few months, it became very apparent that this twinkly-eyed man was made for me and I for him. We began spending time together every day. We studied the Bible together. We ate supper together. We ran and played Frisbee together. It wasn’t long before we both said that three word phrase: “I love you.” It was a phrase both of us had reserved to say to only one person, each other. It was an extremely touching moment.
In August, Chase worked late in the office to create a small book about a brown bear who met “his girl” on the internet. In the story, the bear falls in love and at the end has one question for his girl: “Will you marry me?” On September 4 (my birthday), Chase presented the book to me and anxiously awaited my answer as I read the final words of his carefully crafted story.
Of course, I said, “YES!”
The wedding planning was a happy and wonderful blur, leading to the most beautiful blessing on February 12, 2011: our wedding day. Here’s to never saying, “never,” and following a God whose ways are higher than our own.