Intimidated

I’m sitting here and finding myself intimidated by writing my vows. Crazy to think that a hundred words – the word-limit that Allie and I have set will ‘define’ the love we have for each other. How can one tell a story so beautiful in just 100 words? How can I promise and pray enough good will of heart over our marriage?

She’s scared that I’ll “outdo” her, since I’m “a writer.” I doubt it. All it takes is a few kind words and that smile of hers to make me melt like ice-cream on a hot summer day. Consider me soft-serve already as I consider how anxious I’ll be that day just to finally say, “I do” and party with some of my closest friends and family.

The day is fast approaching. But Allie and I have not lost sight of the fact that this is simply a day. An evening of epic proportions, of course. One that we will remember for a lifetime. But also one that will pass by in the blink of an eye. Our marriage will not be defined by 100 words, or one evening of dancing, drinking, and laughing with friends.

It’ll be defined by the way we love each other day in and day out. How I’ll clean the bathrooms and how she’ll surprise me with coffee at work. How we’ll be fighting and know when to call a time-out and just kiss and promise one another that we love the other and are going to press through.

“I’ll always be there for you,” would sum up the state of my heart and my continuous promise to the woman that’s captured my heart.

I’m sure this state of “lovey-dovey” winsomeness will not always be about and we’ve faced our share of rough-and-tough “disagreements” (that’s what people call ‘fights’ to make themselves feel better about it). But I’m also positive that love does not have to be as dark as some have promised us it will be.

We’ve noticed a selfishness within both of our hearts and a need for humility. I hate being wrong, but I’m learning to hate being right just as much – there is no prize for the winner of an argument. There is only one wrestling with their own pride and one left feeling as if their heart was not valued.

I’ve found myself perplexed at the power of prayer. A few deep breaths, a hug, and then taking a few moments to pray over one another has a way of bringing us back – as if we were on a sports team in a huddle, receiving a pep talk from the Coach. Only our Coach is God.

And so I’m intimidated. Intimidated of how much bigger our love is than myself. Already catching visions and dreams of what God could potentially use our relationship for, the healing power it could bring, the Spirit that dwells within, the wounds to be healed, the walls to be torn down, the cities to travel to, and the stories to tell. Our story is so much bigger than myself. And I’m a pretty big guy. But I feel small.

If David can conquer Goliath, in Christ. Then WE can conquer life, in Christ.

So marriage and love will never be summed up in a matter of words. Their currency will always be measured in actions – the only true measure of a heart.

I’ve never encountered a more kind and beautiful heart than hers. It brings warm, joyous tears, as I consider how much Light she brings into the darkness. Pair that with a heart as wild and fierce as mine and you have an unstoppable force, unwilling to be broken, persevering to the very end with one goal in mind: Share the love of Christ.

Intimidated no more am I by a mere string of words etched out on notebook paper. Intimidated more so by all the work that is to be done and that I am not enough. But praise be to God that he sent me a Helper! And that His Spirit’s desire is to set us both free.

It’s come to my attention that some have found a sort of compelling nature about our relationship – a sense of hope, perhaps. We’re just a couple learning more about love each day. What you’ve found compelling about us is that every day we’re learning to surrender more and more of our hearts, and more and more aspects of our relationship to Christ.

The old Sunday school answer rings true here. “Jesus” is our answer. He can be yours, too.

intimidated

First Love

I can still remember the day I laid eyes on You

My heart skipped a beat as I knew you were True.

With a spirit of tender love, and selflessness

Opposing Your captivating beauty, I was helpless.

Whenever in Your arms I found rest.

Through borrowed strength; I could withstand any test.

With eyes on You, I could climb any mountain

Our relationship grew deeper than any well or fountain…

I can still remember the day I left You

Wouldn’t admit it, but on came ‘the blues’

Depression lingered despite numerous views

Thought pleasures of this world could amuse…

I drank and drank the world’s Kool-Aid 

Made me happy for a minute but was only a band-aid

That delayed the reality of deep, hurting pain

Dry and desolate in need of cleansing rain.

I can still remember the day I returned

Ashamed and eyes filled with tears; they burned

Thought certainly I had lost You for good

Instead you proposed to me with arms wide-open; hands nailed on wood.

“Welcome to my family, child, you’re the Church, my Bride

It’s time to lift your veil; you no longer need to hide…”

You see, I’m loved; bruises and all

And I’m lifted up, every time I fall

Not a single need that can’t be met

As a fisher of men; He fills my net.

The purpose of my life has been revealed

And my scars are continually healed

It’s so great to be refocused on things above;

Christ, the King of Kings, is and forever will be, my first love.