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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

engagement optimism

Jodi and I have been praying since we've gotten engaged that God would show us if there are any positives to this period of our lives. Some of you might find this question to sound stupid or unthankful... We realize that it's an overwhelmingly amazing blessing that we'll be able to marry each other, but that would be a blessing if we had gotten married the day we got engaged. We've had trouble coping with and rationalizing in our head the waiting 3 months (which I know is shorter than most people - they're crazy!) after we became sure that we were to be wed and had both committed to it. It felt like at that point the waiting should be over and really the only reason we're waiting is logistically so we can get the wedding together. And it's been hard to wait. We're ready to be made one. But by God's grace we'll keep waiting another 24 days.

Anyway, enough of my complaining. Last evening, we were feeling particularly impatient so we spent some time talking to our Maker, the One who brought us together, and asking Him for wisdom and strength that we don't have. And he brought to my attention how this engagement time parallels the reality of the Kingdom of God in a way. It doesn't make the waiting any easier, but it possibly can help me to appreciate it more and realize that God might be using this time to teach me some things.

I'll explain my revelation. It's pretty simple. As I was praying, I thought about the fact that we, as the church are called Jesus' bride. But the marriage supper of the Lamb (Jesus) has not happened yet. We've been promised the full communion with God, to be know fully as we are fully known, to be with Him forever. And although we have a taste of His love, and of being set apart for Him, we're struggling and we know this beautiful relationship with our Maker has not reached it's fulfillment fully. So as I long and wait, often impatiently, to be married to the beautiful Jodi Treese, I'm deeply desiring that unity and intimacy - to be know her and be known in the fullest way offered to humans on earth. I have a taste of it now which is how I know that what I'm waiting for is so desirable. In the same - and an even deeper and more real - way, I (more accurately the church as His whole Body) am experiencing God's love and His empowerment and intimacy with Him in part right now. I have a taste of what's coming and sometimes it's almost unbearable to have to wait any longer to be freed from the bondage of this life. And I want this longing for our lover, Jesus, to keep getting stronger because we're getting to know Him more and more as his fiance and we're getting to know more and more the joy we're in for when the marriage is complete.

So, I still am having a hard time thinking of waiting 24 days. I never expected to fall in love like this and I never expected a relationship with a girl to deepen my relationship with Jesus so much. I love you Jesus and I love your amazing gift of Jodi.