Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A PP'sPs about Weddings



Who's doing what?

I'm sure these are but a few of the questions that have been running through some of your minds if you have been keeping up with my facebook status lately.

Yes, I'm getting married! It sounds crazy to me, too! I can't imagine how it might sound to some of you who don't know what's been going on over the last couple of weeks. Let me attempt to explain.

If you've read this blog at all lately, you know that I've been dating Kristen and that it is quite serious. We are deeply in love with each other and confident that our love is a God-given love that is destined to lead us into marriage. But, our original timeline was much different. We had originally planned on getting engaged after October and then getting married sometime next summer after Kristen's school year was over.

What you may not know is that, for the past year or so, Kristen's mom, Lannie, has been fighting cancer; fighting with great strength and courage, I might add. On Friday, June 5th, Lannie went in for surgery to repair an obstructed bowel. What the doctor found was a substantial amount of cancer in her abdomen as well as cancer on her lungs and liver. He was reluctant to give any kind of time frame because of the severity of the surgery itself. He had no idea how she was going to recover from the surgery, much less how the cancer was going to effect her future. Well, given the somber tone in the doctor's voice, we knew that time was not on our side.

After many discussions with many people, Kristen and I decided to accelerate our plans because, as one wise woman said, "Every girl needs her momma at her wedding, and every momma needs to see her daughter walk down the aisle."

I am confident that Lannie will not only be at our wedding, but that she will be happy and healthy as she sees her radiant daughter illuminate the sanctuary on September 5, 2009.

I'm sure that you have other questions that are bouncing around in your heads. Please feel free to pose those questions in the comment section of this post. I don't pretend to have full comprehension of what God is doing in our lives right now...I only know that He is working in our lives. He has facilitated the blossoming of our love in a way that is beyond comprehension. Maybe because He knew well before us the time frame we would be working with. Whatever the reason, I know He has placed this woman in my life for such a time as this. May He be praised!

Frantically planning the perfect wedding,


Thursday, June 4, 2009

A PP'sPs about Complications

I thought I would elaborate on my new relationship with Kristen.

More specifically, I thought I would share how we ended up together, complete with the many complications we have and continue to muddle through.

The first and least influential complication is the age difference between us. I will be 35 in July (Dang, that sounds old!) while Kristen just turned 28 last week. Not a huge gap, especially when you consider that my maturity level is far lower than my 35 years would indicate! It was a factor for her early, but she seems to have realized that I'm still less mature than she is.

A second complication is the fact that Kristen is the little sister of one of my closest friends, Brian Lucas, or as many know him, Chico. For her especially, dating her brother's close friend was incredibly weird. For me, I was just worried about how it would affect my relationship with Brian. Would he really trust me with his baby sister? Would things be weird between us? So far, so good.

As you would guess, if Kristen is Brian's sister, then it would follow that I have known Kristen for awhile. In fact, Kristen and I have known each other for over ten years. I even taught her Sunday School class while she was in college at Asbury. In fact, she sat next to Christy for much of that class. The two were close friends. Kristen is close with Christy's family. Very weird! But, also very special because I haven't had to introduce an entire stranger into my family relationship with Chris, Julie, and Kyle. They already know and love Kristen and have fully embraced our new relationship, as difficult as it will be at times. For that I am eternally grateful.

The complication that worried me most going into the relationship was the most embarrassing for me. You see, before Christy and I began dating, I had a fairly substantial crush on Chico's baby sister. I liked Kristen eight years ago! And now, here I am again falling for the same girl. My biggest fear was that someone who knew my previous feelings for Kristen would assume that, because I had feelings for her now, I had never stopped liking her. Nothing could be further from the truth. But the thought that someone might think it for even a minute was almost enough to keep me from ever pursuing a relationship with Kristen. Thankfully, no one has voiced that concern and have immediately dismissed it when I have mentioned it. Again, I am grateful.

Knowing all of these complications and weighing them against my feelings, I finally got up the nerve on April 5th to call Kristen and share my thoughts and feelings. Her response was priceless: "I don't know! I don't know! I don't know! (long pause) Josh, this is complicated!" To which I responded, "You have no idea!" We talked for a few hours that first night about the afore mentioned complications as well as our individual feelings for each other and where we should go from there. She agreed to let me take her to a baseball game for our first date, and as they say, the rest is history!

We've had MANY long conversations about the complications and issues that our relationship inherently has. I haven't even mentioned the issues that Kristen has had to deal with in dating a widower AND a pastor! I told her she should have run away that first night! However, she has been amazing as she has considered these and other issues with wisdom and humility. Much to my amazement, shock, and joy, she has come through the other side of all this with a strong, genuine love for me that I feared she would never have. Our relationship couldn't be going any better! I am blessed beyond measure!

Once again, I must thank everyone for your prayers and support over the past 8 months. I am eternally in your debt.

Content inspite of the Complications,