Today, we have a guest blog from Donna Jones… Heartline Bible study teacher, wife to Pastor JP, mom to Taylor, Kylie and Ashton and friend to all of us at Crossline. Donna has a national ministry as a speaker and author, focused on helping women find and follow God. You can connect with Donna by visiting her website at donnajones.org or by joining women’s Bible study this fall, where we are spoiled to have Donna as our weekly Bible study teacher.
On Friday night she said “yes”!
Their love story started years ago. Kylie was only 14, too young to even date. Tim spent hours at our house and with our family. Patiently, they waited, dated, went to different colleges and graduated, got jobs, saved money.
Two weeks ago JP got “the call”.
“I’ve never seen anyone so excited in my life! He’s got a plan for the proposal to top all plans” JP told me after his early morning breakfast with Tim.
It turns out, weeks before Tim met with a jeweler to design a custom made ring, painstakingly choosing only the most flawless stones. He didn’t want flashy; he wanted perfect. He ordered a Bible with her new name engraved on the front. On Friday evening he set up candles on the beach, called friends and family to celebrate with a bonfire after the proposal. He even made sure she had time to fix her hair and make-up before sending Kylie on a scavenger hunt which culminated in the proposal (now there’s a young man who understands the mind of a woman!).
It was an event.
Witnessing Tim’s enthusiasm and his elaborate display of love prompted our daughter Ashton to exclaim “I want someone to do that for me!” My mother commented “My, how proposals have changed since your dad and I got engaged!”
It turns out women of all ages like the idea of being treasured.
Today the excitement of the weekend has settled a bit which left me time to reflect.
For as long as I can remember I’ve heard pastors preach marriage as a picture of Christ’s love for His church. To be completely candid, until this weekend, this concept has remained head knowledge, never quite gripping my heart. Maybe it’s because I’ve never seen the amount of energy, preparation and excitement that goes into a proposal.
But Friday night the magnitude of this message thrust itself into twenty-first century living color.
It made me wonder how the Father felt as He prepared to send His Son to us. Was His heart bursting at the seams as He watched His Son take His first human breath? Did he hope we’d notice He given us a flawless jewel? Not flashy, but perfect.
Did God watch breathless as His Son was nailed to the cross in a massive display of unfailing love? Did He wonder if we’d pause to reflect on the work behind the scene? The sheer sacrifice He willingly made because we’re treasured?
I wonder how deeply God longs for us to accept his proposal of love. I wonder about the depths of His grief when we don’t. Or when we treat His displays of love for us (which happen every day in more ways than we can count) as if they cost Him nothing. No big deal. Ho hum.
I wonder if He wants me to remember my name is engraved in the Book of Life. Forever a reminder that I belong to Him.
I wonder if He longs for me to understand. To finally get it.
To see that the love I desire is mine if I’ll say “yes”.
To love God back because He first loved me.
Their love story reminds me of a greater love story. One that is for me and for you.
I say “yes”. How about you?
“We love God because He first loved us” 1 John 4:19