We ate soup for lunch and talked a crazy circle around church planting, the dirty south, and how we fit into the picture.
I’d be lying if I told you that reality didn’t set in the minute we climbed out of the Shenandoah Valley.
I’ve come home to piles of laundry,a pantry to restock, a heart to express in words, a story to keep telling, and I’m looking across the room at a husband with his head in his hands.
If he rubs his head any harder, he really will lose every last strand.
I hear him sigh and I feel the weight of it all with him.
I’ve spent almost 15 years walking this road of ministry with him and I know the signs of a heavy heart and a weary soul. He’s weary, even after a weekend of soaking up the Lord.
How can we both be parched after 48 hours of soaking?
After Thad and I got engaged, his youth ministry grew and the more it grew, the more estranged from him I felt. He carried his bible everywhere and he read every book he could get his hands on. I couldn’t compete with Tozier or Jesus and frankly, I didn’t even want to try. I spent the entire 16 months of our engagement trying to talk myself out of it.
I went to 3 bridal shops and bought one of the first gowns I tried on. I picked out black gowns for my bridesmaids and red roses for my flowers. I went through the motions of the planning and left the details up to my mother.
I’m going to lay my heart bare and tell you that I absolutely felt like I was a mail order bride. Thad and I had virtually no physical contact for most of the years that we dated and there was little, to no romance in our relationship.
In January, before we tied the knot in February, I really felt like I couldn’t marry him. He was in the full throes of a new full-time ministry and I was emotionally spent. I knew that his ministry was growing faster than he could keep up and I was really tired of trying to keep up with him.
I just wanted to be first. I wanted the romance and the public hand holding and our song. I wanted him to want me above all else. But he didn’t and I knew it. I think everyone else knew it, too.
My heart was literally broken, but I was in too deep.
And I couldn’t shake the Lord’s promise to me 3 years earlier. Thad was my gift and I had to trust the Lord to take care of my heart in the waiting.
I just didn’t realize how hard the waiting would be.