Well, he asked me to marry him. I said, "Yes."
Then he told me he wasn't ready. I said, "I knew that."
Then he told me he knew we're meant to be. I said, "How do you know?"
He said, "Because you're still here."
It's crazy how much he and I have been through. It's unbelievable how much I have grown and changed and made compromises that I never thought I'd make in order to be with him. Some people think I'm just love struck. Some think I'm being duped. Others think I need to 'just do me' for a while. While others wonder, 'What's the rush?'
Only one person thinks we are making the right decision. Only one person stands with me and understands the value of marriage in the way that I do. I'm glad I have one. So many times God calls us to things and we must stand alone. I've been so afraid to be called out from the group, to allow God to isolate and/or insulate me from the common crowd that I've missed opportunities to be used greatly. Well, this may be the greatest calling away from the masses I've ever heard. I'm walking, eyes wide open, into what may be one of the greatest challenges of my life. And only one friend stands fully with me. Those are usually the kind of odds God likes to work with.
My fiance is not the man I or anyone who knows me would have chosen for myself. He cannot even believe that I chose him. He thinks that he's not good enough for me and that I deserve better. The long and short of it is, he is flawed. Terribly flawed. He has weaknesses and shortcomings that a woman like me would never have given accepted in a man. And yet, I have accepted him. He may never change. He may never be any more or any better than who and what he is right now. And I have accepted him. It's no wonder people are concerned for me. They don't want me to be hurt. They don't want me to waste my gifts, my beauty, my talent, my life on a man who is unworthy of me. They don't want me to miss out on the ideal marriage situation in order to become help meet to someone who is so clearly not the ideal choice. I get it.
But I also get something that they don't get. I get that every godly marriage doesn't comprise of a Boaz and a Ruth. I get that at least one godly marriage consisted of a prophet and a whore. One other consisted of a a murderer and a widow. And yet another consisted of a former prostitute and a forgotten patriarch. Jesus didn't come to earth to save perfect people. He came to restore lost and broken people back to God. I get that marriage is hard work and if you choose the wrong person or marry at the wrong time, it can be harder than it needs to be. But, I also get that easy is overrated. Marriage isn't about me being happy and having an easy time of things. Marriage is about demonstrating, in human form, the over arching, all encompassing, ever lasting love of a perfect God toward and imperfect people. Marriage isn't about perfection, it's about be perfected.
Is there some sort of sick hubris in thinking that God would call me to a great sacrifice of marriage like Hosea? Sacrifice of marriage. Hmm. Bet nobody's ever thought of it like that before. Is it just an area of brokenness in me that I need so badly to be needed that I will place myself in unnecessary hardship just to fill my own selfish need? Is it possible that he and all the others are correct and there is someone better out there for me, someone who doesn't have all the issues? Possibly. I can't deny that I have thought about it (frequently). I can't deny that I have asked all these questions of God and myself. I can't deny that the wisdom of my family and friends hasn't affected me. But, ultimately, I keep coming back to him. I keep coming back to LOVE. Real love. Sacrificial love. I keep coming back to PURPOSE. Real purpose. Throw away the trappings of this world purpose.
This may be the greatest calling of my life and hubris will certainly lead to my destruction. The only way to fulfill this calling is through humility. Through understanding who I am and being all of who I am through Christ. He may never change, but I must believe he will as will I. I cannot remain the same if we are to thrive. I must change. I must become more like Christ. I must rely on His strength and wisdom. I have asked God to give me the strength to go running in the opposite direction if this isn't right. That's the only way I'll be able to go back. Now, I can only move forward.