I co-teach a young women's Sunday school class, along side my wonderful sister/friend Sue, (you can find her blog here at Who I Am Instead ). Recently we have been studying the Book of Ruth and this past Sunday morning, we looked at "The Proposal". In Ruth 3 we find Ruth resting at the feet of Boaz, while he sleeps on the threshing floor.
9 He said, "Who are you?" And she answered, "I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer." 10 And he said, "May you be blessed by the Lord, my daughter. You have made this last kindness greater than the first in that you have not gone after young men, whether rich or poor. 11 And now, my daughter, do not fear, I will do for you all that you ask, for all my fellow townsmen know that you are a worthy woman.
An impossible love story, made possible by a sovereign God. Brought out of the ashes of a life that had been taken to the brink of utter desolation. A pagen woman, sojourning to a foreign land, widowed and living with her bitter mother-in-law. And then she meets her kinsman redeemer. As John Piper calls Boaz, "a God-saturated man".
As Sue started the lesson Sunday morning, she asked our class if anyone would like to share their "proposal" story. Our group of young women are such a blessing. As a couple of girls shared their proposal stories, with smiles on their faces, you could sense the joy and happiness each one had in the telling of her own love story. Sweet, precious stories of walks on the beach, recreations of "first dates", handsome young men on bended knee...
And so I wanted to share with you the story of my one and only marriage proposal...I can tell you're on the edge of your seat...was it a flurry of poetic words like those found in Ruth? maybe a moonlit walk? surely there had to be a teary-eyed, breathless "yes, I will marry you!"...
Now I need to preface this by saying that everything that went wrong with my one and only marriage proposal was completely my fault. Completely. My. Fault. I take full responsibility for the utter wreckage that was my one and only marriage proposal that thankfully, ultimately ended with a spring wedding.
But I still blame Mark.
We had been dating for three years. Steady. No breaks, no break-ups. We saw each other every single day. But during our third year of dating, Mark began working as a contractor and he was on the road three weeks out of every month. So our time together when he was home was very special and meaningful to us. We always put alot of thought into our "dates". Those priceless moments spent together... waiting in line at the $1 theatre to see "Raiders" for the 23rd time, watching "Magnum P.I." with his parents in their living room, endless loops around the bowling alley parking lot...*sigh*
During those first three years, we had a few discussions about our future together (they consisted mostly of me dropping subtle hints like, "you know what I'd love for Christmas? A subscription to Bride magazine!") But during one break in March, when Mark was home at Easter I just felt it in my bones. We were really going to have a serious talk. You know the kind of talk I mean. Marriage, family, a life shared together for all eternity. A serious talk, like most 22 year olds and 19 year olds have together. And it went a little something like this...
(we're sitting in his blue TransAm, Reo Speedwagon is singing something about "fightin a feelin" on the Kenwood car stereo and my pink Casio watchband just broke...it's 1985)
me: "great, I loved that watch...hey babe, do you ever think about our future?"
Mark: "you wanna go to Denny's? It's clam chowder night."
End of discussion.
I know what your thinking, not off to a great start...but wait it gets oh so much better...
Tomorrow: Part 2 of my one and only marriage proposal...a French restaurant, a little black box and a lobster in a to-go box all conspire together to make a night of misery.