It was a bright and sunny day, and I had just parked my car to go to Home Church. As I walked up the sidewalk (which is built by the City of Waterloo....yah City!), I noticed a handsome guy standing on the sidewalk having a chat with our Home church elder Dan Brown. It's not often that we have men come to home church, let alone a handsome one, so obviously my interest was peaked. Being the friendly person that I am, I introduced myself to the new fella.
During the bible study, Mark didn't speak much other than to offer some insightful thoughts. At times we eyed each other up and did the whole look and glance away thing... so High School!
At the end of the study, I left and didn't speak to him.
He started coming to Home Church and we saw each other there. One day he called me up to ask if I would like to join Dan and his wife Claudia for mini-golf but I already had plans, so I asked him to join me instead for a friend's event. Brave guy.....being exposed to some of my friends and random others on our first "date".
The "date" was a TOTAL disaster!!! It was full of DRRRA-MA among the group....Let's just say I'm still amazed he wanted to talk to me after!!!
We hung out a few times after and slowly started getting to know each other. We dated for about a year and then broke up due to my own preconceived "I want my future husband to be...." list
Even though we broke up, we continued to be friends for 4.5 years after which was great cause we got to know each other as friends. We shared a lot of mutual interests like running, volleyball, board games, antiquing, camping etc and over time we became best friends - completely honest and authentic with each other and people we could be ourselves around.
During the 4.5 years I continued looking for someone to match ALL my "husband-must-have" criteria and somehow things were just not working out. I finally got to the point where I got down on my knees to God and stopped trying to control the situation...... I just let go and Let God and it made all the difference!
It was then that it hit me like a truck.....Mark may not had everything that was on my "list" but he had what's on the real list, the list that really matters,the fruits of the Spirit list.....love, joy, patience, gentleness, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control. He was always on the sidelines patiently and faithfully loving me and waiting for me.
Mark always said that God told him that I was the one for him and so he was ready. I just had to get there myself....and it took me letting go and trusting the Father, who knew what I needed was more important than what I wanted.
The point of all this is that sometimes when we hold onto what we think is best for us and what we want..., we are not very satisfied or happy. We have to let it all go and Let God. HE knows what we need more than what we want and He knows what's best for us even though we may not know it or recognise it right away.
I am so blessed to have Mark in my life and look forward to marrying my Best-Friend and running-buddy, my biggest cheerleader and encourager, my Ken-doll as Shannon likes to call him and the man that God had prepared for me.
It was a pleasant evening after work and I was relaxing on my housemate Dan Brown's porch, when Dan came out of the house with my shoes in hand, locked me out of the house and said "Mark, you are coming to home church with us!" I tried to protest cause I was tired and not up to meeting new people, but my car keys, house keys, and wallet were all locked in the house.....and so I had no choice but to go with them!
We got to the house where the Bible study was being held, and I was standing on the sidewalk chatting with Dan figuring out what to expect inside, when I saw a good looking woman park on the street and walk up to us. She said hello and introduced herself to me. I knew right away there was something special about her!
Sharon and I played the whole pretend-not-to-look-at-each-other game throughout the meeting however she rushed off right after the meeting was done so I couldn't talk to her more.
Suffice to say, the following week Dan didn't have to lock me out of the house for Home Church.... I went voluntarily. When we got there I was talking to Dan when Sharon came in and let me know that she arrived by saying "Glad to see we didn't scare you off"
I came to Home Church for the following weeks and got to know the people there. After a few weeks I finally asked Dan to give me Sharon's number and I called her to see if she wanted to come out to play mini golf with us. She was busy, but asked if I wanted to come to join her instead. The date was definitely a very interesting one involving some of her friends and other new people. It was a very different night with many different personalities, but it didn't scare me away, which I almost thought was what she wanted to do.
After that evening, we started going out with not so many people involved. As I got to know her more, I started liking her a lot. We dated for a year, during which time I prayed about her, our relationship and how things should proceed, and God told me she was the one for me. I was ready to marry her back then but Sharon told me she was not ready and didn't quite feel the same. It was hard to hear but I knew God was in control and what His plan was for us so I was okay with waiting in Him for her. We decided to remain friends and during that time she made me want to strive to be a better person and continue growing in life and the Lord. She encouraged me with getting healthier, always gave me support when needed and just was my best friend.
For 4.5 years I waited for her when suddenly, May of last year, Sharon approached me and asked if I was like to start dating again. I, of course said yes!!! It was an answer to prayer!
We dated again and on November 9th I asked her to be my wife.....her response - "Obviously!" : )
The rest is history and I'm looking forward to spending my future with the woman that God had prepared for me from the very beginning