Written By: Chelle Wilson
Sitting beside My Beloved (and yes, that is what I call him…) at a local trattoria on my recent birthday, I realized that we’ve celebrated more of my birthdays together than anyone else in my life, including my parents. We belong together.
We were introduced as teenagers by a school friend at a church picnic. I was 15. Nearly 40 years later, it is my prayer that my husband would be ever captivated by my love. We are fortunate. Not only was he my first love, he is my love still.
I am grateful that ours was not a straight path to marriage. Though he was my first serious relationship, one that spanned high school and college, I had a full single life. I dated, had friendships and learned how it felt to be valued. I learned the things that really mattered. Although I didn’t articulate it, I measured every relationship against my first because My Beloved set a remarkably high standard (he still does).
I encourage single women to be single. To learn to love yourself, to be adventurous, responsible, and to know that choosing to join your life with someone is a sacred choice, one to be made soberly. Love is marvellous, but “being in love” can make you a little crazy. Crazy, as a life choice, should be avoided at all cost.
Because were were children when we met, we still talk about our second 1st date. I’m not one motivated by dreams, but after years of neither thinking of nor seeing him, I clearly remembered dreaming about him. I called his parents’ home the next day.
After a delightful chat with his dad, I asked him to pass along my regards and perhaps my number. I expected that he was living on the opposite coast and that we might run into each other at some point in the future.
As I often tell people, God wanted us to have babies. He’d recently ended a serious relationship (I think within days of my dream), and was living and working locally. He returned my call the next day. 2 days later, over dinner during that “second 1st date”, I realized I’d never stopped loving him, and the way he made me feel was the feeling I wanted for the rest of my life.
It still wasn’t a straight path to marriage, but a week before the 13th anniversary of the day we met, we pledged our love and our lives before God, friends and family and started our lives together.
A few years ago, My Beloved and I were discussing The Five Love Languages, by Gary Chapman. An “acts of service” man, I am blessed after all these years (nearly 25!) with someone robed in humility, who is both a good shepherd and a good steward. Sober and serious, he has a natural affinity for taking care. And no, he doesn’t need an S on his chest…he expects to do (well) what he does.
According to Chapman, for those who love via acts of service “they are thinking, “Cut the talk. If you loved me, you would do something…” My Beloved is not that brusque, but that is who he is and how he loves.
God knew I needed someone who would treasure and secure me, giving me just what I needed to spread my wings and soar. As is the case with all things of God, he was made for me, and I for him.
I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine…
Song of Solomon 6:3 (NIV)