I was convinced that my fate was sealed, my future grim: I was aspinster at nineteen. All I needed was the cat lady starter kit and I’d be set. For life. The start of a new year hadn’t changed my heartache and I subtly blamed God for my relationship status, or lack thereof. There was one relief for my wounded heart, however – my Youth Pastor was praying for me. I had asked him to pray that God would take away the resentment and bitterness that was growing in me.
I headed off to my first day of Psychology 101, an off-campus community college class meeting at a local elementary school. Determined to take my mind off myself I prayed, “Lord, help me to stand strong for You in this class. Help me to be a bold witness. Amen,” as I parked my ’72 Chevy Malibu in the snowy lot. This semester I resolved to live out loud for Jesus. What better way to test my faith than in a psychology class?
20 child-sized desks, neatly lined in rows were re-shaped into a circle at the request of the professor. Already, one of my comfort zones was gone. Each face was easily seen as we introduced ourselves to the class. Name, occupation, one sentence why I took the class. Across the room a handsome, smiling young man gave his responses, which I noted with interest. David was a Lutheran Youth Pastor in need of general credits. “Cute guy. Too bad he’s not saved,” I mused as a born and bred Bible Church girl.
My previous prayer was about to be tested at the professor’s next exercise. He would stand in the circle and ask an open ended question then randomly point to someone for a one word answer.
“Man is basically ________.”
I scrambled to think of a bold Christian answer, prayed I wouldn’t have to say it, and repented that I felt that way. After several students were selected Mr. Smiley-face was chosen and answered, grinning, “Sinful.”
Wait, what? NICE. Well done! I affirmed him with the “I’m-a-fellow-Christian-in-the-trenches-too” nod, I breathed a silent sigh of relief.
“Interesting, interesting,” the professor mumbled, turning away from my pleased compatriot. “Here’s another one. A basic need of people is ___________.”
Emboldened by David’s response, I settled on mine. I was indicated to answer. “Redemption,” I piped up, and grinned in spite of myself. I covertly looked across the room and received David’s affirming nod.
Clearing his throat, the professor murmured, “Well. You two should get together sometime,” and moved quickly to explain the syllabus and his expectations for the class.
We took the professor’s advice.
Conversation came easily for us as we talked after each class about the subject matter, the Bible and life in general. I was pleasantly surprised to find that David WAS saved and came to appreciate some things about Lutheranism I hadn’t fully understood previously. We went on few dates, opting to spend time with each other doing commonplace activities like shopping, cooking, laughing, and looking for youth group curriculum. There’s a delight in the mundane when you’re with someone you love.
It’s been 34 years since that first classroom experience, and David and I are still learning the finer points of who we are as individuals and as partners in ministry. Prayer is central to our love story. Unknown to me, my Youth Pastor prayed beyond my request, asking that God would provide someone who would love me. David had an eager group of church ladies praying for his future bride. As we grew closer, my prayer life blossomed into an ongoing prayer for direction and the desire to follow God’s will and glorify Him in this relationship, even if it meant that we would not get married. David and I both wanted to honour God in our marriage and ministry together.
1 John 4:19 “We love, because He first loved us.”
Christian marriage is a place where two individuals complement and enhance one another and become one new entity – a relationship of intimate community under God. The individuals are still evident, yet there is a coalescing of body, mind and spirit that glorifies the nature of God when both are submitted to Him in love.
In their 33 year marriage Vicki and David have raised 5 children, welcomed 2 daughters-in-law, and delighted in 4 grandchildren. The twelfth and latest move has settled them in Boyertown, PA where they minister to two church plants, one in Boyertown and one in Reading, PA.
Vicki is a part-time radio announcer at 1075Alive.FM/WBYN in Boyertown. Her desire is to use her “voice” to share the goodness of God through speaking, drama, and writing. Our stories make HIS-story