Our Love Story Part 3.
Josh ran from the Lord until one day at the end of April in 2012, his running came to a climax. He woke up that morning and told my Mom that he would not be coming to our class. For the majority of the school year this bible class had been our favorite time together. We read great books and had even greater conversation. It was very obvious his refusal to come was outright rebellion. He knew if he came to class he would be confronted with Christ and the truth of scripture, and he couldn’t let that happen.
I cannot even begin to tell you how many tears I shed that morning. I spent several hours in my room bawling before the Lord. I didn’t understand. I knew God had told me that Josh was the man I would marry. There wasn’t a doubt in my mind. However, for the last month he had not been acting like a man I would want to marry. It hurt me so deeply to see him so far from the Lord, because I knew he was capable of so much more. So I cried and prayed and cried some more. Through my sobs, the Holy Spirit spoke and told me to read the story of Abraham and Sarah as they wait for Isaac. So I read several chapters in Genesis until I got to chapter twenty-one verses one and two.
“Now the Lord was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did for Sarah what he had promised. Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him.”
Genesis 21:1-2 NIV
That was my promise. The Lord was going to do for me what He had promised, which was bring Josh and I together. More so, He was going to do it in His timing. Just like Sarah, all I needed to do was wait. So that’s exactly what I did. I kept praying. I asked those closest to me to pray. I knew the Lord was going to get a hold of Josh and fulfill His promise to me.
I didn’t have to wait too long. Just a couple of days after that horrible, yet extremely blessed morning full of tears, Josh stopped running away. He spoke to both of our parents and confessed all the sinful choices he had been pursuing, as well as the righteous choices he had been avoiding. He asked for their forgiveness and submitted to their biblical authority and accountability. More importantly, Josh confessed to God, repented, and asked the Lord to walk with him daily as he committed every portion of his life to the Lordship of Christ. This was not Josh’s salvation experience. That had been years earlier when he was a child. This was a recognition that he had stopped pursuing Christ and started pursuing the world, as well as a commitment to walk in the Spirit in the future. What a testament of the Lord’s power and involvement in our life. He loves us, He hears us, and He longs for us to let him in on the intimate details of our lives.
Two days after Josh confessed to the Lord and our parents, he came to our weekly bible class. The second he walked in the door, I knew my Josh was back. I had to hold back a tsunami of tears so I didn’t scare him. Haha. He apologized to me and my best friend for pushing us away for the last month and admitted he had been running. We forgave him and our bible study continued like it used to. Except it was even better than it used to be. Afterwards, I told my Mom and best friend that Josh had his sparkle in his eyes again. I still love that sparkle in his eyes today.
So the next couple of weeks rolled on for what seemed to me like centuries. Everything was great between Josh and I. We were friends again. Except we were so much more than just friends. Total 2000’s tween moment here, but go look up Just Friends by the Jonas Brothers. It’s pretty much our anthem for the first year and half we knew each other. Haha!
Our junior/senior banquet (homeschool version of prom) came around and I was dying for Josh to ask me. I was able to get my hands on two tickets and was really seriously considering asking him. But then God reminded me of my Genesis promise and what happened to Sarah and Abraham when Sarah thought it was a good idea to take God’s job into her own hands. Thankfully I got the message and chose not ask him. I can look back on what I call my “Hagar moment” and laugh.
The week after that banquet we celebrated Josh’s high school graduation with a party. It was such a sweet time, filled with many blessings to Josh and lots of laughter over fun memories. That evening after the party Josh and I stayed up until after midnight texting. I knew something was weird because we never texted that much and he was being super flirtatious. I imagine that if GIFs had existed I would have been sending a lot of cartoons melting into a pile of hearts. Little did I know he was texting my Mom at the same time. They texted until two in the morning planning how he could ask me to be his girlfriend!
The next morning he talked to my Dad at church and asked him for his permission to date me. I’m not sure what my Dad said but all I know is that he said yes! That afternoon I was at my grandparents house celebrating Mother’s Day when I get a text from him asking me to come outside. Confused, I walked outside and saw him with a rose and a cupcake (my all time favorite). He then proceeds to say a whole bunch of really sweet stuff that I don’t remember because I was entirely too excited to let him finish. I started squealing “Yes! Yes! Yes!” while he was mid-soliloquy.
From that moment on there has never been anyone else I could ever dream of wanting to spend a life with. We both knew then that we were committing to forever with each other, and I’m so glad we did. He is my leader who loves me selflessly, my prayer warrior, my encourager, my sounding board, my reminder that I’m being ridiculous, my comic relief, and my favorite person. Oh, and he’s still my friend.