And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. ~Romans 8:28
In my previous post, A new hope, I shared with you the story of how I met Sarah-Jane. It’s a fun and great story. But now it’s important to add some texture to the story that helps you see there is much more to it than two people “connecting” via an internet website.
First of all, the most fundamental part of my life is my faith as a Christian. Having everything in the world in common, without this, would be pointless. With that in mind, the website I used was a Christian-themed service. However, just because it has Christian in the name, it doesn’t mean everyone there shares your beliefs and values. So finding a pretty face and an engaging personality wasn’t going to be enough.
While on the surface, being 3,000 miles away is inconvenient, to say the least, it does force you to really get to know one another without distractions. Of course, I would say nothing negative about the conventional method of dating and getting to know one another. But there is something about the way Sarah-Jane and I are wired, as well as difficult experiences from our past, that lead me to believe this was absolutely the perfect way for us. Besides, how else was I going to find the perfect woman hiding out in Rhode Island, of all places? We are each very deep feelers. What I mean by that is that we are very emotional people. As such, we are each vulnerable to getting carried away with emotions prematurely. But the distance really gave us no other choice but to talk about everything.
In doing so, we discussed our spiritual beliefs and values in great depth. We discussed just about everything you could think of. Money. Church. Ministry. Goals. Dreams. Disappointments. Heartbreaks. Families. We laughed…a lot. We even cried. We dealt with our fears, both real and imagined. We discussed very difficult topics. Even awkward ones.
In every single detail, we found incredible compatibility. There has never been a single thing in which either one of us have said, “I disagree, but we can work that out.”
In all the topics we covered, among so many other “little” things, I found everything leading straight to God. I call them “bread crumbs”. From things that, in and of themselves, don’t determine compatibility, to very deep and personal things, everything left a trail straight to the feet of our Lord. The first of which is her name. Sarah-Jane. As I mentioned previously, my mom’s first and middle names were Sarah Jane. Does this detail mean we’re meant to be together? Of course not. But it sure is something more than a coincidence. Let me share with you why it’s significant to me.
The day my mother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer, we knew she only had weeks to live. As I sat alone with her in her hospital room that day, I was staring at the TV, but really, my focus was a million miles away. I thought Mom was asleep, but then she stirred for a moment. As I turned my head, I saw that she was looking at me. Then she said these words to me.
Who will pray for you when I’m gone?
She’s been gone since March 20, 2009. I lost my number one human advocate. But in God’s unmistakeable, unmatchable way, He has given me another Sarah-Jane who has taken up the mantle of praying for me with a heart of love and devotion.
Bread crumbs to the heart of God.
Many years ago, Sarah-Jane’s grandmother told her something that has always stuck with her. Sarah-Jane’s birthday is May 25. Her oldest son’s birthday is September 25th. Sarah-Jane’s grandmother’s birthday was also on the 25th of the month. Her grandmother told her that special things will happen in her life relating to the 25th.
My birthday is February 25th, and my mom’s was October 25th.
Yes, these things may seem coincidental in nature. Maybe they are. Personally, I am not a believer in coincidence. At least, not when they relate to big things in life. Remember, these things are not what our relationship is based on. They are simply very cool details that God gives us to show He is in those very details. Whatever it is in your life that leads you to giving Him glory and praise…it’s of God. End of story.
I also find the bread crumbs in the fact that we have this distance between us during this process. With her blessing, I’m sharing this detail about her. Due to some heartbreaks in her life, it was very important to her, even more than she knew at the time, to find someone who would fight for her. Someone who would be willing to overcome obstacles, who would battle inconvenience in order to pursue her. During this process, she has seen my determination. Something she has never felt before. I don’t say this to lift myself up. It’s simply to say that God knows what we need before we do. He knows the things we need to see in others, and ourselves, in order to receive and appreciate His blessings in our lives.
I shared a quote from Thomas Paine with her some time ago. I felt it summed up my feelings on overcoming obstacles in pursuing God’s will. And with this, I’ll close this post. Tomorrow, I’ll share with you the feelings and events that led up to our initial face-to-face meeting.
What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value.