A little bit nervous; first one. Here we go. I love my wife. Period. She has extended me grace in a lot of ways; one way in particular, she has expressed to me how she knows how important it is for me to do things with guys from the dorm I spent three years in- retreats, weekend road trips to Memphis for Gus’s Chicken, etc. This summer in working concrete, I had to go on an over-night trip (two nights, three weeks after being married). A couple of weeks ago, WEST Hall had its annual fall retreat. Finding out the night before it was to happen, I asked Kari if I could go; she said yes, and that was that. Time away from your husband/ wife is not easy or fun, yet sometimes you have to.
Well, during these times we have had nights apart from each other, we would try and make a point of sending text messages to each other letting the other know they were on our minds, and missing them, la di da da, so on and so forth.
I have been helping out with the New Hope E. Free youth group since the beginning of the year, and I, along with two other college leaders, were in charge of planning the youth group retreat which would stretch from Friday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. Another whole weekend sleeping by myself! Not my favorite thing, believe you me. The other leaders and I decided that the theme of our retreat (which we called “Fall Attack”- b/c no one knew what we were retreating from…story for another time) would be ‘solitude and spending time with God’. Well, even though am a leader, I was still supposed to go and spend time in the presence of God during our time of solitude. Lately, I have been interested in getting to know more about Jesus- asking who Jesus is; what has He done for me; what is He doing in me, kind of things. During my time, I spent time ‘adventuring’ in the woods, making my own paths, coming back to an established one, and venturing out again. I spent a bit of time reading through John’s gospel. When I got back and was reflecting on my time, I realized that I had just walked the entire time with Jesus! It was the longest amount of time I had spent with Him in a long while, and it was incredible. I don’t feel like any new revelations came to me, I just felt that I was in the presence of my Savior for a long time, and couldn’t help but be enthralled by Him.
How does this relate to Kari and I? Well, there is this ‘list of priorities’ that a couple, especially a Christian couple, ought to have; it goes something like this: 1. God/ Jesus; 2. husband/ wife; 3. 4…. It is true, I missed/ miss her when I am not with her; I told her when I got back that I missed her in a ‘different’ way. What was awesome for me to see, (and I hope the same was true for her as well) was the first time I think I had put my relationship with Jesus above my relationship with Kari- without losing all the love I have for her. It is truly a ‘changing’ experience.