and now… Getting Closer
Something was definitely wrong, she thought. He’s acting really strange tonight. Even stranger than he had the last few weeks, after she had heard from God to give him time. And she had. But now he was acting cold and distant.
True, he had traveled the hour to visit the local prayer meeting she had started attending. And he had been his normal endearing self to the others who were there. But when it was time to leave, he had said goodbye to her abruptly and without much feeling.
Now she was getting ready for bed and wondering what went wrong. Did she hear from God wrong and this was all normal as he prepared to leave? Was their relationship over?
“God,” she cried. “I know I gave him to you. But You also said he wasn’t going to be a priest. I have no idea what’s going on. And it hurts. Take care of him whatever’s happening.”
Just then there was a knock on her door. She glanced at the clock. 10 PM. Who would be coming to her house at this time of night? Scared to open the door, she tried to peek out the window. There weren’t many lights, but she managed to see the car parked in the driveway behind her car. Could it be? It looked like his car! What could he be doing here? It had been an hour since he left and she was already in her PJs. She couldn’t let him see her like this!
“Hello?” she heard him call. “It’s me. Let me in.”
Dreading what he might have come to tell her – sure he was breaking up with her – she let him in.
“Why are you here? I’m already dressed for bed,” she protested.
“You look beautiful to me any way you dress,” he answered with a smile.
They sat in the den and he told her that as he was on his way home, he had begun thinking about the evening and didn’t like how it ended. So he had decided to come back to talk with her about it.
So she took a deep breath and prepared herself to be let down, certain he would explain how their relationship had to end.
“I’ve been thinking about this a long time,” he said. “I don’t really know how to say it.”
Here it comes, she thought, looking down at her lap.
“I love you.”
What? She was definitely not expecting that. She looked up into his face.
He was smiling but there was fear? uncertainty? along with the smile.
“I love you,” he said again. “I know the seminary is something we need to deal with, but for right now I want you to know that I love you.”
Unable to speak, she just stared at him.
“I don’t really know how you feel about this. I was afraid to tell you.”
She smiled. But then the smile froze on her face as fear rose up inside her. Now that she was faced with the moment she had waited so long for, she didn’t know what to say. Did she love him? Did she really love him – or was she just imagining her feelings all these months, building them up into something they weren’t? She felt so broken inside, could she love him or anyone? Was she even capable of love?
“I don’t know if I can love you. I don’t know if I can love anyone.” she finally said.
Her response was not what he expected, but he accepted it, as he had accepted her from the beginning. They talked for hours about her fears and feelings, about his fears and feelings, and about their possible future together. Then they prayed. “God, we don’t know where this is going. But we thank you for the opportunity we had tonight to really share our hearts with each other. We place this relationship in Your hands. And we trust that You will continue to guide us. ”
And He did. For the next six months as seminary loomed closer (those struggles are a whole ‘nother story), for the following four years of their courtship, and for the next 33 years and counting of their marriage – His amazing love was with them every step of the way.
The end. Or the beginning depending on how you look at it. 🙂