Saturday, March 23, 2013

My 2nd Favorite Love Story

Adam and I are celebrating our 3rd wedding anniversary on March 27. I am so thankful for God's grace  in sustaining and allowing our marriage to thrive. So, because I love reminders, I thought I would share mine and Adam's love story.

Summer of 2009, I felt restless. I was single and finally at peace with that fact. I was tired of feeling like I was putting my life on hold, waiting for marriage. I had begun the paperwork for a 2 year missionary position with the International Mission Board in which you sign a statement agreeing to remain single and not pursue any relationship during that time. I really had begun to think that the Lord did not have marriage in my future. Every relationship I had been in during the previous few years had only been disappointing and heartbreaking. My life before coming to Christ seemed to be the biggest obstacle...a deal breaker.

I was loved so well by my church family at Concord; I never felt shamed or shunned. I was being mentored by my sweet friend, Kerry, and embraced like another daughter of my friends, Bob and Capi.  Bob had the ridiculous idea that I should try Eharmony as a last ditch kind of effort before finishing my missionary paperwork. I told him, "That's for desperate people." His reply was, "Well, you're desperate." So, middle of July, I signed up for a one month subscription and decided I would "put myself out there". Four days later, I received a message from Adam in Huntsville.

Winter of 2009, Adam became a believer. He also had some "deal breakers" in his past, but was loved very well by friends at Southwood and didn't feel they were a hindrance to any future relationships. Adam was growing very quickly in his faith and seemed to really understand the grace the Lord had given him. He wasn't desperate or looking to find a wife, but his mom, Joan, knew better. In Spring 2009, she signed him up for a year's subscription to Eharmony telling him that he wouldn't find his wife in Huntsville. He talked to a few people, but conversations never went far. Then, in July, he was matched with Lisa from Chattanooga.

My profile picture on Eharmony. I had no makeup on and hadn't bathed in 5 days. Real winner right?

This one of the pictures on Adam's Eharmony profile. Notice the ponytail?

We started the guided communication where Eharmony provides the questions and that quickly turned into super lengthy emails back and forth. Funny fact: I actually thought Adam was foreign before we talked on the phone the first time. I saw the ponytail picture and Adam wrote about living on Kwajalein, which I had never heard of, and he often misspelled words in his emails, so I kind of thought he was not an American...haha! After talking on the phone for a few days (and figuring out Adam was not a foreigner) I told Adam he should come to Chattanooga and visit...so he did.

Our first date, he drove up in Joan's minivan with one single, beautiful, flower he had picked from her garden, for me. We walked part of my running trail that crossed the Walking Bridge and told each other how we came to know Jesus. I really love hearing people's testimonies and we had decided to wait until we were in person to discuss our own. I told mine, giving the parts I felt safe with and leaving out the deal breakers. Adam, however, told me everything! Did not leave one detail out. I didn't feel any reservations about his story, even with him only being a believer for 6 months, because I knew my own sin..and it's much worse. I remember we were walking back across the bridge and I told Adam that there were things I had left out because we needed to have more of a foundation before he could know them. His words were, "Lisa, our foundation is Christ and if I can't look past something that He has already forgiven, then I'm not the man for you."

Amazing words, right?! Although I didn't believe him. I looked at him, thinking that he was the most gorgeous man I had ever laid eyes on, and I didn't want to get attached, so I decided to tell him everything. I honestly thought, "I'm going to get this over with, finish our date, and I will never see him again." After I had finished telling him all of the dark, hurtful, things I felt so much shame about, he looked at me, told me he was sorry for those things and said that he was broke (as though that would be a deterrent for me). He didn't even flinch with my sins. Adam has told me that as I unveiled my "deal breakers" that I looked like a little girl who had been badly hurt and mistreated and he thought, "I can love her, I can protect her."

Our first date was August 7, 2009 and after whirlwind trips back and forth for both of us between Chattanooga and Huntsville, he proposed September 5, 2009 after 6 weeks of emailing and dating. On our wedding day, we had been together a total of 8 months!

As you may have noticed, the title of this post is My 2nd Favorite Love Story. My favorite love story is about a God who became a man, bore my sins and my punishment, and died in my place because He couldn't bear for me to be separated from Him. Then, He rose from the grave so I, too, could have a new life. Before Adam, I knew I was dearly loved. I felt safe knowing that Jesus knew more of my sins than I did and didn't turn away in disgust...instead, He embraced me and took me for his bride. My most persistent question as a single person was, "Is there anyone who could come close to loving me like Jesus does?" Adam has been the answer to that, but only because Adam understands what it means to be Christ's beloved as well. 

Two sinners, redeemed, given a small glimpse of what eternity will be like.....we are blessed!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Happy Half Birthday

I'm convinced that time goes faster when you're having fun, which must explain how 6 months have already gone by since Silas blessed us with his presence! Here's what we have been up to the last month:

Little man has found his tongue and loves to stick it out! He looks like a tiny, little, puppy. We think he's attempting to taste the air...or figure out which direction the wind is blowing.

Testing out the air at the park.

Flushed cheeks after nursing in the car and tasting some spring-like air.

Speaking of tasting, Silas started eating solid foods the other day! So far, he has enjoyed avocado and bananas. I believe I fell more in love with Adam because of what happened with Silas' first experience with table food: I wanted to feed Silas because I thought I would give smaller bites than Adam (Adam gives HUGE bites of food, which I learned first-hand when I was nursing Silas and hungry at the same time when he was only a few days old.). Adam said, "No! You always get to feed him! I want to feed him!" How can you argue with that kind of cuteness? So, we took turns for the sake of pictures :)

Proud Daddy! Silas is checking out the bowl.

Adam telling Silas he's about to eat yummy avocado.

My turn! I was telling him, "Mmmm!

Silas is moving around A LOT! He is still trying to get up on his knees and is perfecting his plank. He really enjoys the walker because he can explore while I get things done in the kitchen. I need to rearrange some things on our island because this is what I found him doing the other day while I did dishes:

Who needs toys when you can play with cutting boards and storage bags?

Silas is so wonderfully affectionate :). He is perfecting his open mouth kisses, hugging on necks, and just showing how excited he is to see us.

 Chewing on my chin.

 Sweet, attacking kisses!

My handsome boys.

I've also decided that the difference between little girl and little boy clothes are that little girls' clothes are just meant to be cute while boys' clothes are all about playing pretend. Silas' outfits vary from looking like a tiny farmer, tiny frat boy, tiny Adam in flannel, tiny ski lodge, and my new favorite: tiny Russian gymnast.

I found this great Patagonia outfit at the neighborhood thrift store for $2! We took so many pictures of him and "talked" for him in a Russian accent and called him "Sven" all day. He is so much fun!

Happy and excited boy!



Sweet, little, Silas, there is so much more for you to learn and explore! We are so excited to watch you experience things for the first time. We've thought a lot lately about what life will be like for you and how the Lord is going to use you. You are so very precious in His sight as well as ours! We can't wait to see what the next six months will bring :).

Happy Half Birthday!!!

Friday, March 1, 2013

A Very Special Day

February 18, 2013 was a very special day for us: Silas was baptized! Our friend, Chad, who is one of the ministers at our church, officiated and we were blessed by many of our family and friends present to witness.

Bow tie Buddies.

 Another sweet, little boy, Elliot, was baptized also.

Adam looking on proudly while I cry!

 Silas had the sweetest, most joyful face and demeanor afterwards, a look I never want to forget.

 Lion King re-enactment.

 Most of our friends and family that attended.

 Look at that sweet, little, nugget!

Ryan totally photo-bombed this picture..haha!

We are very aware that baptism can be a very divisive subject: infant vs. believer, sprinkling vs. submersion, etc. It's an area that both Adam and I have struggled with, studied, and prayed over since before we were married. We don't believe that the water has any magical or saving properties; we are still praying for the Lord to open Silas' heart and bring him to salvation. We see Silas' baptism as him being brought into God's covenant of grace. I think Chad explained it beautifully, which you can view in the video here. Whatever your views, would you join with us in praising God for His good gift of Silas and praying with us that the Lord will save him and use him mightily for His namesake?

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