Tuesday, July 03, 2007

the written version

We were "supposed" to have a double date with our friends Joe and Sarah last Tuesday night. Joe is college friend who is also in seminary with us now; they're getting married in Dallas this weekend, and all the gang minus myself are driving down for the occasion. We wanted to do one last nice date night, so the guys were saving up for the steak night for awhile. Well... the double date never was a double date. However, Joe played it up, called me, and said they had to cancel at the last minute. I called Bob and told him, and we decided to still go even though they would not be able to join us. So we drove downtown all dressed up (I'm the goof who didn't bring her camera) and walked into this EXQUISITE steakhouse. (If you listen to the news, it's the one O.J. was asked to leave during Derby weekend.) My man let me order a petite filet and we ended the meal with some ridiculously divine chocolate dessert. I then recommended that we go for a walk, not knowing at the time that I was playing right into Bob's hands! The sky over the Ohio River was breathtaking. There was a huge storm heading our way, but it was still far off in the distance. The sun was setting behind it, and we could see the rays beaming from behind the dark clouds. I was so enamored that I was clueless as to how frantically Bob was trying to find us a place to go. I then, again playing into his hands, suggested that we go sit down somewhere as my feet don't do well in dress shoes. We found an unoccupied park bench facing the river, framed by the two river bridges, with that magnificent storm as the backdrop. No sooner had we sat down Bob turns to me and says, "Well, I have a confession to make. Joe and Sarah came and ate here last night." My response was nothing more than a rather confused expression. He then proceeded to tell me that they came to scope out the riverfront for him, and that I was beginning to find myself in the middle of a pre-planned scheme. As I am sitting there with my mouth hanging open in utter confusion (attractive, I know), trying to assess what in the world is going on, Bob reaches into his coat pocket and pulls out a handwritten letter. One of my "natural highs" in life is a handwritten letter, and considering Bob has never handwritten more than a sweet note to me, my brain began turning to mush when he asked me to read it. I got to the third line and started crying... He informed me as I was reading that he had about thirty drafts sitting at home, signifying that he spent a substantial amount of time writing what he truly wanted to say. The only way I know to describe the moment is that it was completely surreal. I honestly asked myself if I was dreaming, if this was really happening. As I am thinking all of this I get to the last line of the letter where he humbly asks for my hand in marriage. I put my hand to my face, unable to control the tears, as he kneels on the ground and asks me, "Jennifer, will you marry me?" I managed to say "of course!" and all I could do was hug him. I was crying so much, and in such disbelief, that I didn't even see the ring when he first placed it on my finger. The entire proposal was a complete surprise. Even my parents were impressed by how well he was able to plan the event without dropping any hints to which I may catch on. As often occurs in hindsight, I was able to quickly look back to little things over the next six months that may have caused me to wonder, but Bob's just that good.
I went home after the proposal and reread his letter. How in the world did I
come to this place, where the Lord was gracious enough to place this man in my
life? As I write this, I still have trouble believing that all of this is really
happening. After years of attending the weddings of all my closest friends, I am
having to wrap my brain around the fact that this is my wedding I am planning.
But, oh, so much more than that. More than the wedding, planning for pretty
dresses and what everyone will eat at the reception, one thing stays primary in
my thoughts: I get to marry him. I get to marry him! I look in his eyes and try
to believe the wonderful reality that I will be looking into those same eyes in
twenty years. I look at him and I am all the more amazed by this great mystery
that is marriage. I have found myself, moreso than ever before, reciting the
words of my favorite song, and I find it increasingly more impossible to fight
back the tears. And do you know what is so glorious about such tears? There is
no reason to fight them. This day that every girl anticipates will arrive in six
short months, and I am continually drawn to thinking on how precious our Lord
is. He has taken me, this broken and sinful little girl, and prepared me for
this indescribable union.

The Church
I have come with one purpose
to capture for Myself a bride
by My life she is lovely
by My death she’s justified
I have always been her Husband
though many lovers she has known
so with water I will wash her
and by My Word alone
so when you hear the sound of the water
you will know you’re not alone
chorus
cause I haven’t come for only you
but for My people to pursue
you cannot care for Me with no regard for her
if you love Me you will love the Church
I have long pursued heras a harlot and a whore
but she will feast upon Me
she will drink and thirst no more
so when you taste My flesh and my blood
you will know you’re not alone
chorus
there is none that can replace her
though there are many who will try
and though some may be her bridesmaids
they can never be My bride
chorus

3 comments:

Ashley said...

How sweet!!!! Thanks for sharing it with us. Congrats again! :) I think it's great that it was a total surprise ... that's what I want! ;)

ColoradoDreaming said...

We are in Colorado this week on vacation and I finally got internet back. I am sitting here crying it is so beautiful and romantic!!!! Thanks for sharing it with us.

Blueeyes said...

God has truly blessed you. Congrats on your life together.