Noah and I met the spring of 2008. He was a band boy and I was not looking for a relationship. At all.
I was working for my church at the time and Noah was involved with the worship team. Looking back, we both thought that the other looked familiar but cannot pinpoint a specific time we remember seeing each other.
Noah was always coming over to our house (I lived with 5 other friends) and was somehow involved with almost every adventure we would go on. We started “hanging out” (those were my words) a couple months later and had officially moved into the dating world by that summer. Noah was very open about his intentions but I wasn’t so sure. I had a lot of baggage (don’t we all?) toward dating so I tried everything in my power to make it a little more difficult for him. You know, just to make sure he was really a good guy and meant what he was saying.
At the end of the summer, we both left Portland to see family. I flew to Wisconsin for 14 days and Noah went to San Francisco with his. It was on this trip that the Lord softened my heart and I realized that I wanted to give Noah a chance. I realized that I was actually in love with him….and that it was okay! On the flight back to Portland, I read Hannah Hurnard’s book, Hind’s Feet on High Places. It is about a young girl named Much-Afraid who is transformed by the Great Shepard. It is a beautiful analogy of our relationship between Jesus and the transformation that takes place when we trust Him. While somewhere in the air between Minnesota and Oregon, I came across a part in the book that opened my eyes to vulnerability and my lack of.
“Much-Afraid shrank back. ‘I am afraid,’ she said, ‘I have been told that if you really love someone, you give that loved one the power to hurt and pain you in a way nothing else can.’
‘That is true,’ agreed the Shepherd. ‘To love does mean to put yourself into the power of the loved one and to become very vulnerable to pain, and you are very much afraid of pain, are you not?’
She nodded miserably and then said shame-facedly, ‘Yes, very much afraid of it.’
‘But is is happy to love,’ said the Shepherd quietly. ‘It is happy to love even if you are not loved in return. There is a pain too, certainly, but love does not think that very significant.’”
I felt the Lord warning me about something regarding Noah but yet I felt so much peace in finally opening myself up to him. In my spirit, I knew something wasn’t right but I had a refreshed outlook on finally being vulnerable and giving Noah a chance. It was such a change in my thinking, I knew it was the Lord. I had to trust Him.
The next day, Noah and I planned to meet at Laurelhurst Park for the first time since our vacations. When I saw him, I ran up to him and couldn’t wait to let him know how God was changing my heart. His reaction, however, was the complete opposite. He sat me down and started to cry, while telling me that he was breaking up with me.
I couldn’t believe it.
Within minutes, we were both crying but my tears were more coming from a deep thankfulness for the words that God spoke to me while on that plane as well as through Hinds Feet In High Places. I had done the unimaginable and had finally opened myself up to love and even though it wasn’t returned, I had faced my biggest fear. I was going to be okay. I kept thinking, “God is so good to me!” Noah was trying to console me yet didn’t know that my tears were more out of thankfulness that my Lord was protecting me. Poor Noah!
The breakup didn’t last long. Three days to be exact. We talked things out and discovered that Noah also had deep fears with relationships which brought us even closer together. In no time, Noah was proclaiming “I love you!” from the mountain tops and even brought up the topic of marriage a couple months later. We were engaged 6 months later and married the following August. By the way, we highly recommend counseling for any and everyone engaged, pre-engagement, post marriage….It is a very good thing. 🙂
This blog reminds me that it is indeed, happy to love. No matter what the response, the Lord calls us to love and it will be the greatest adventure you will ever take on.