NOTE: Before getting started today, I’ve been feeling as though I need to explain a bit to those of you who might be just joining my blog, and are thinking: “What do these stories have to do with The God of All Comfort?” My friends, I pray that you will stick with me. God has done more than I could ever have dreamed with my life. But it took me many, many years to reach the point where I realized I needed Him. The path I wandered was sometimes very dark and lonely, but eventually I found His light. The whole purpose of my ministry is to let you know that no matter what you’ve done, God will be there for you as you come to Him in repentance and faith.
Continuing on with the story I began in my last post, Gary and I became quite the team. It wasn’t long before he introduced me to his mom and step-dad, and there I found a love which was unconditional. They accepted me for who I was, and were so easy to talk to!
After we had been together for a few months, Gary’s side of the family arranged to get everyone together for a big family reunion. They rented a couple cabins down at Virginia Beach, and they invited me to come along. I was very excited, but also extremely nervous. I had never even been on a plane before!
We arrived at the one cabin where we were to stay, and it was here that I met Gary’s cute little godly grandmother for the first time. What a spitfire! She didn’t hesitate to speak her mind, but at the same time the love that exuded from her was incredible.
Gary and I had our luggage and were headed to one of the bedrooms to get unpacked. Gary’s grandmother rushed over and said, What are you doing?
Gary said, Well, Linda and I are going to go get our things unpacked.
This cute little woman got in between us, and said, Oh no you’re not! You’re not staying in the same bedroom – you are not married!
Certainly stopped us dead in our tracks. Gary’s mom started to defend us, but there was no backing down for this little woman. We were not married, and that was forbidden! Then we were directed to separate bedrooms at opposite ends of the cabin, and during that week she watched us like a hawk making sure nothing inappropriate was going on.
You know at the time I thought that was really quite bizarre, but as I look back now I admire her greatly for standing up for what was right in God’s eyes. I look forward to seeing her in heaven someday.
All in all we had a wonderful time at the reunion, and I fell even deeper in love with Gary and his whole family.
Once back home we continued spending every moment together we possibly could. Gary worked at a fish company, and he introduced me to all sorts of seafood, such as lobster, crab and halibut. Yum!
One weekend we were just hanging out at his apartment and suddenly Gary got up to go into another room. As I sat on the couch in the living room, all of a sudden Gary came back in, knelt down onto one knee, and opened a small box: Will you marry me?
This had not been expected, and immediately inside I started to panic. Were all these good times that we’d been having suddenly going to change? What should I say?
Uh … you know the answer, I replied.
All it took was one look at him to tell that I had wounded him deeply. This wasn’t exactly the “Hallmark moment” that you see on TV or read about in all those beautiful love stories. But I was so frightened. What if things turned out like last time? What if after a couple years I start treating him nasty and get tired of him? How could I honestly say yes?
But his face…
Gary said softly, What do you mean I know the answer?
I don’t know if I’d ever seen such hurt and pain in someone’s face. I could tell that he had been expecting an excited yes, with me perhaps jumping up off the couch and throwing my arms around his neck as the tears went flowing uncontrollably down my cheeks…
Yes! I said, with as much joy as I could muster. And then I tried to make light of the whole situation to put him at ease, pretending that he had just misread my previous comments.
But inside the doubts were churning. Had I made the right decision?