Anyway, I love fall here: the vivid yellows of goldenrod, sunflowers, and aging soybean fields. The thousands of butterflies garbed in white, yellow, and orange. The massive sky, so intensely blue, so intensely huge above the rustling corn fields. The crisp mornings and warm afternoons: the smell of bonfires and apple cider. The reddening sumac last brave wild roses. It's a busy, a productive time of year here-a time of harvest, of farmers harvesting from the black of morning to the dead of night. A time of a fresh school year along with the joys of new books, fresh notepads, and clean pencils (I was one of those strange children that actually loved school.)
I'm so happy to be getting married at this time of year; right when everything seems so crisply alive, taking one last hurrah at life before retreating for winter hibernation. In two and a half weeks, I get to marry the man whom God is giving me to love for a life time.
Speaking of whom, it is hard to believe that we were engaged 7 months ago today! Time is a funny thing, and some days I feel like we have been engaged 5 minutes max: other times, that it has been a lifetime. I'll never forget that day...
I was living overseas, teaching these kiddos (one of the best 9 months of my life, I might add):
|(Don't worry, I'm not balding-I'm wearing a headscarf)|
I was loving life there, but also gladly rising early pretty much every day (as the my students' family knows oh-so-well: thanks for your patience, guys!) for that wonderful 6:15 call with this wonderful young man who was rapidly becoming my best friend. It was crazy in a sense, this being in a relationship on opposite sides of the globe, unable to see him in person (or even on video usually), unable to learn from my parents' advice or to pour out my over-abundant emotions on my big sis.
Still, it was a season when I felt more keenly alive than every before; a time when I felt utterly stretched and clueless, yet so glad to live dependent on God and lean on Him for wisdom. So far from my family, I found myself pouring out my heart and confusion and delight in prayer...and I discovered a Father ready to listen, ready to guide. As I prayed, "God, show me the way," I found myself more and more drawn to this man I talked to on Skype.
Skype. Actually, I first met Eric on Skype. Rewind a little farther. In late 2009, we both joined a group our CollegePlus friends had started: a prayed together a few evenings a week. We started with praise, then moved on to various requests. In matter of fact, we prayed more than we chatted, but I noted this fellow student with respect: when he prayed, it seemed as if he truly was before the Throne of Grace. I had rarely heard prayers with such delighted passion, and I found my heart caught up in praise when he was praying. Truth be told, I hardly noticed Eric himself at first: only the God He was praying to.
When we met in person in July of 2010, neither of us fell in love at first sight (sorry to disappoint you!). However, we enjoyed time with each other and with other students, and came to feel that we could trust each other as friends not to flirt, but to treat each other as friends and a brother/sister in Christ. There actually weren't too many guys I could feel that way about, and I guess I appreciated that about Eric.
Not to bore you all to death, I left for my new home overseas in August of 2012, completely and utterly unaware that anything more than a pure, happy friendship with Eric would ever exist. I respected him: I enjoyed him and his sense of humor: I trusted him: but that was all.
To be continued (maybe even later today)....