Today I am thankful for the birthday boy - my husband! Have I told you much about him? (If you say yes, and you think you've heard these stories already, stop reading!)
When I saw him for the first time, I of course thought he was the cutest boy I had ever seen! He was the piano player at Intervarsity, a Christian fellowship group I started going to in college. Because he sat down to play the piano, I couldn't really see him during the worship part of the service, which was probably good since I was supposed to be singing anyway. My favorite part about going to IV was the end. Dave and 'the band' would play a fun song or just 'jam' and after they finished, he would stand up and you know my head snapped right around! He was always laughing, loudly, and I wanted so badly to be part of that crowd. He seemed so happy and here I was, not so happy. Our first meeting didn't go too well but I can't blame him (I hadn't accepted the Lord yet, so I was the 'old me', as in trying to be something I wasn't.). Despite being cute, he seemed arrogant and I figured that he was just another guy to add to the eye candy list.
The next school year, I was the on my way to being the new me and we met again. As it turned out, we had many classes together and had many things in common. He used to come to class from his job as a teacher at a Christian school, where he got a free newspaper every day. The paper was always folded, open to the crossword puzzle. I'll never forget the first time he set it down on the desk next to mine and didn't sit down right away. YOINK! He came back and looked on the floor for the paper. Then he noticed me w/a big Cheshire grin, the crossword already started! After that it kind of became our thing...he'd sit next to me and we'd whisper clues and answers back and forth. Then he started to offer me a ride home and since it was cold, I wanted to say yes. He told me it was on his way - LIAR! It really wasn't that far out of the way, but it wasn't ON the way either =) Our first real date started out as a group date. He asked if I wanted to go to a Badgers' football game w/a bunch of people. Later he told me no one was available or wanted to...so it turned out to be just us. Before the game, we wandered around the Madison farmer's market and he asked to hold my hand.
(Time out - I am leaving huge chunks of the story out. If you want to know more, you can always ask. But one background detail is that before I got saved, I wasn't exactly...um...boyfriend-less. Let's just say I had a few boyfriends or just plain boys in my life. I was...rather relaxed w/the boundaries, when it came to boys. I am not proud of that fact, but it is part of my past. I had pretty much come to the conclusion that was what an adult relationship entailed. Despite asking forgiveness for sins and inviting Jesus into my heart, I hadn't revised my definition of an adult relationship. Time in.)
HE ASKED TO HOLD MY HAND. Did you catch that? MY HAND. I couldn't believe that he asked to hold MY HAND. Not some other body part, but MY HAND. He had more respect for my hand than most other boys had for any of me!!! This is the part of the story where the girl who thought she had fallen in love w/the boy fell a lot harder.
I am so thankful for my husband. Truthfully, when I had gotten saved, I pretty much made a deal w/God that I would 'quit boys'. I just was going to focus on school and stay out of trouble and someday I would find the man I would marry...less than a year later, I met my husband. Less than 6 months after that I was engaged. About 6 months after that, we were married!
To the hottie behind the piano -
Thank you for giving me a second chance. Thank you for asking to hold my hand. Thank you for being a happy, cross-word loving, gentle man. Thank you for saying you weren't afraid to have 12 kids. Thank you for playing frisbee w/me on our wedding day. Thank you for holding me when I cried over not having a baby right away, and then all those months after either. Thank you for supporting me as a new teacher. Thank you for helping me when I was sick and pregnant. Thank you for always singing to our boy and reading him the Bible. Thank you for taking the leap into foster care w/me. Thank you for allowing me to be home w/our kids while you work. Thank you for all the hard work you do around the house. I would be so lost w/o you. Thank you for leading this family in the way the Lord leads you. Thank you for your faithfulness to the Lord, to me, our kids and to the church. Thank you for sharing so many trips w/me, even if I have forgotten the details of them! Thank you...for your love. I have many flaws, some of which only you know. But that doesn't stop the look I see in your eye when you hold me. Besides the Lord, you are my best friend. Happy Birthday!!! I love you. XOXO
Dear Heavenly Father -
Thank you for this man, this man who has curly hair and blue eyes and a laugh so infectious...thank you for this man that respects and cares for me. Thank you for putting this man in my life at a time when I was quite broken and newly learning about you, Lord. Thank you for making my husband the kind of leader and servant who is calm, gentle and compassionate. I pray you bless my husband in a special way today as we celebrate both his birth and Thanksgiving. Amen!