Friday, April 7, 2017

Once Upon A Time...

“Apparently, if you want to find love, you have to quit everything to become a governess. This fact has been proven by Maria and Jane Eyre.”
 -stolen from Abbey's twitter (my humble apologies, but I got such a kick out of it) 

Warning: This is going to be a long post. :) 

This time last year, if you would have told me I would be engaged in a years time, I probably would have thought you were crazy.

No offense. :P

But it just seemed like something so distant, or that maybe would never happen. 

Even at the end of this past summer, with camp season over, I still struggled with not knowing where my future was headed. 

August was a hard month, for multiple reasons, and I remember one Sunday near the end of the month, when after going to church by myself, I was driving back to camp and the song "Keep Making Me" came on the radio. Some of the verses were really convicting to me, and got me thinking.

God had been teaching me all summer to be "along for the ride", and if I could live that way, trusting Him from week to week and day to day, never quite sure how plans would change or develop during the camp season, why wasn't I trusting Him to lead me through the rest of my life?

"Your Love is Strong" by John Foreman also become a favorite song of mine over the summer. 

I don't know how many times I listened to it driving back and forth from camp, singing it out loud and belting out the chorus.

But if I was really trusting in that fact that God loved me, that He was providing everything I needed, why was I feeling so discontent? 

It was warm and sunny out, and so I pulled into a cemetery (they're nice peaceful places to walk 😊), and had a prayer time. I apologized for my wrong attitudes, and thanked God for all He had blessed me with. I prayed about my future, that He would guide, and that I would follow willingly, knowing that His plan was the best.

Now, here's something about me. I don't like basing things on feelings. If I was a character from Star Trek, I would be Spock. 


God gave me an amazing peace after that morning. It was such a blessing, and such a change from my earlier attitude.

None of my circumstances had changed, I still had no idea what would be next when I finished helping the camp director's family, but God worked in my heart, helping me see that whatever happened, He is there with me, and that He is all I need.

Giving my summer to help with camp and two adorable girls as a nanny (kinda like a governess, right?), hadn't been my idea, but God worked it out in an incredible way, so why wouldn't there be more adventures waiting in the Fall?

September came. 

Things started picking up at camp as the off-season ministries started, like bible clubs, and the coffee house Saturday nights. 

One day, while having a conversation with Marie, the director's wife, she mentioned something about a guy from her home church who was interested in meeting me. But she was quick to say she knew how awkward it was when people try to set couples up, and she didn't want there to be any pressure, she just wanted me to know. The only detail she gave was that he was around 25.

Ok, thanks, thats nice, who knows if we'd ever meet. He'd probably think I was shy and quiet and too hard to talk to.

 I tried not to think about it too much, and the weeks moved on.

Well, towards the end of the month, Marie's home church (her dad is a pastor there) was having a missions conference, and it worked out for us to go to the last session- a Sunday night service.

When the service was over, I remember noticing a young man across the sanctuary- tall, dark curly hair, glasses. There had been a few other times we had been to this church earlier in the summer, but I hadn't ever seen him before. 
People were coming up to visit with Marie and her husband Shannon, and soon, this young man approached them, and they introduced us.

Bethany, meet Shawn. Shawn, meet Bethany.

After a little bit, Shannon and Marie had to go share with the youth group, leaving me and Shawn in the increasingly empty room. He was friendly, and started asking me questions, but soon the assistant pastor came over, and when the three of us finished talking, both the pastor and Shawn left, leaving me to wait for Shannon and Marie.

I wasn't sure if Shawn was who Marie mentioned earlier, but he seemed nice, and I started wondering if he would accept Shannon's invite to come to coffee house. On the drive back to camp, Marie kept apologizing for leaving me with Shawn, because she hadn't been trying to set us up. I told her it was all fine, I hadn't cared. :)

The next day was my birthday, and I got together with my mom and Becca for the day. I told them about meeting Shawn, since it was fresh in my mind, and they started asking questions. I didn't have too many answers, since he and I had talked very shortly, but it was still fun.

A few weeks later Becca came out for a visit, and she and I were going to play music for coffee house. While we were practicing outside before things started, a big red pickup pulled in.

"Who's that?" Becca asked. "I don't know," I answered.

When the driver got out, Becca leaned over and whispered, "Is that Shawn?"

"I think it is...."

Oh great, I was already nervous to play music tonight, but now?

To tell you the truth, I had nothing to worry about. In a way, that evening was the strangest thing. Shawn told me later that he thought he would just stay for a short time, and then leave since I probably didn't like him. His impression of me when we first met was that I was really shy, and quiet. Oh dear, I'm glad he was willing to give me a second chance.

He and I visited on and off throughout the evening, and even though it was only the second time we met, it felt really natural talking to each other. He even started teasing Becca in a big brother kind of way, and by the end of the evening, when everyone else had left and it was just Becca, Shawn, and me still visiting, he said he would be my friend, and we high-fived to make it official.

So, that's the story of how we met.  He found me on Google+ a couple days later and we started messaging each other, asking all sorts of questions ranging from silly to serious.

It was exciting and nerve wracking all at the same time. No one had ever shown interest in me like this before. Was I just jumping at the first guy to come across my path? It was all new and strange, but I knew one thing for sure- I hadn't done a thing to start this relationship.

In fact, I was feeling very happy with my new found peace in where God had me as a single girl. I had a book to write, my whole future ahead with endless possibilities.

But was this where God was leading now?

It wasn't something I had been looking for, which was maybe God's plan all along.

So, over the course of these past 6 months, I've had a new friend, a boyfriend, and now a fiancé.
Shawn is a pretty amazing guy, and I'm so thankful God brought him into my life.

It wasn't my timing- I thought I was ready to meet someone before I graduated high school, or maybe I'd find "the one" at Bible school.

But God had me wait for someone better, someone who could get me to open up, who can make me smile just by thinking about him, is a gentleman in how he treats me, has a heart to serve God, can be silly and fun loving, yet practical and good at solving problems, takes care of me, and loves me very much.

I love him too. :)


  1. I loved how you wrote it all out, and getting the full over all story out like this! I'm so glad it's worked out so wonderfully for you :D And Congratulations again!!!! You have no idea how happy this makes me :D... actually, you probably do! Haha.. anyways. Just amazing :)

    1. Thanks so much Keturah! It was fun being able to write it out, and think back again about how God brought everything together.

  2. <3 So sweet. You really never know where love is going to find you. I always thought that was a weird thing to say but I've now proven it to be true and you did too!

    1. Yes, it was certainly a surprise, but a very wonderful one!

  3. What a lovely love story! Shawn sounds like a wonderful guy. I am so happy for both of you!

    1. Thanks, Abbey! It's still a little strange to think I have a "love story" but exciting too. Shawn is pretty special :)

  4. So sweet! :) Congratulations Bethany!!

  5. Congratulations Bethany! HE does sound like a really awesome guy! God's Blessings on you both.

  6. What a beautiful story! Congratulations on embarking on the adventure of a lifetime. :)

    1. Thank you, Paige! It's certainly been an adventure so far :)


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