So if you want to plan a wedding in just under 6 weeks, finish remodeling a house, work 10 extra hours a week to have enough time built up to take off for a honeymoon, then move and actually get married… well, you might as well forget about blogging for awhile. There are just not enough hours in the day.
Right now I am sitting in a rustic style coffee shop in Tahoe, catching up on all of the things I had to let go by the wayside in recent weeks. I am sipping on french pressed Sumatra, sitting indian style on a carved chair, and checking my phone every few minutes to see if David is up yet.
It turns out that as busy as I have been, he’s been busier still – “doing the heavy lifting”- as he’d say. Saturday morning we left the church at 8a to head to Columbus for our massages and a little R&R and I could see on his face just how tired he was. The massage helped, but after flying the better part of Sunday, a fever came over him that night. Yesterday he was much better and we walked for a long time down the beach and all over the little community we’re staying in. Not wanting to tax him too much, we settled on a movie in the early evening. (And side note: if you’ve not seen Inception, go see it! I am still thinking about the plot twists this morning) Still by the time we’d eaten dinner and walked back to our hotel suite, he was starting to crash again. So he’s resting awhile this morning, threatening to put on a stocking cap and run to “cook out the germs”, and I am taking a few moments to myself to process the weekend.
Leading up to the wedding, I wondered if I would have a meltdown or get scared or at least nervous. I was planning on the last one and praying against the other two. But much to be delighted heart’s surprise there was not even one moment of jitters. Thursday we ran errands, picked up Shane & Beth & the adorable Lucy from the airport, and then I was blessed by my sisters with a bridal shower/bachelorette party with some of my favorite ladies. Friday we set up, decorated, cleaned the camp grounds and had the rehearsal & dinner (big thanks to Debbie & Paul Andre for it all!). Bethany and Ryan Speiers blessed us by coming and offering their incredible photography & cinematography skills. After having kept up with Bethany for years via the blog world, I knew I’d instantly love her (and I did). Saturday there were massages, then flowers, then hang out time with my aunts and sisters and friend Bethny as we got ready. Kelli Dailey came and documented the day, capturing some of the sweetest moments with the ladies I love.
At some point on Saturday Bethny commented that I was so calm. I checked myself… calm, settled, content, peaceful. It occurred to me that this is what it feels like to walk in the promises and provision the Lord has set before your feet.
The wedding was beautiful and more than I had even hoped for. Lots of friends and family made the trek to celebrate with us. The decorations and spirit of the wedding matched our intentions for it to a tee. The weather was cool, but the sun was shining and the sky was clear: perfect for photographs according to Nick Fancher, our amazing photographer. I walked down the aisle holding onto my Pap’s arm and holding Cohen’s hand to the man who has won my heart over and over and over again. As Beth and Shane sang a version of Kim Walker’s “How He Loves” I had to close my eyes to keep the tears at bay. I felt myself bending under the weight of His wind and mercy and glory- the lyrics were spot on. Pastor led us in vows that resonated at the core of my being and ended with a blessing over us to remind us that God will strike down every enemy. The evening was full of dancing, friends, and food. It got too late and too cold for the bonfire, but we were ready to get going.
Sunday morning I woke early and had three memories in my heart.
The first was of a conversation I had some 6 months ago with my friend Cheri. David and I had just talked on the phone for the first time in 7 years and he had (as he always does) encouraged my heart with his life-giving words. Cheri wanted an “update” and I found myself trying to say one very defining sentence to her : He sees me.
After years of feeling what I can only describe as invisible, I knew that David saw me. After years of worrying that old friends would only see how beat up I’d been or how much I had lost, I knew in my heart that David still saw the real me that he had known at age 8 and 12 and 17 and 21. That knowledge healed and undid me.
The second memory was of last January. Sitting in Chrisdee’s house as we prayed over and blessed my dear friend Sarah. As I was about to leave, Sarah anointed my head with oil and prayed Joel 2:24-27 over me:
“And the [threshing] floors shall be full of grain and the vats shall overflow with juice [of the grape] and oil. And I will restore or replace for you the years that the locust has eaten- the hopping locust, the stripping locust, and the crawling locust, My great army which I sent among you. And you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord, your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you. And My people shall never be put to shame. And you shall know, understand and realize that I am in the midst of Israel and that I the Lord am your God and there is none else. My people shall never be put to shame.”
At the time, I wept and believed her prayer was straight from God and for me. But I had no idea that the Lord was on the cusp of restoring the deepest of things; the very things I wouldn’t have even known to ask for.
The last thought I had was of my friend Angela’s dream. Shortly after I had moved from Seattle to Ohio, I got a call from Angela. An often prophetic dreamer, she had dreamed about being in a backyard not her own at a barbeque and seeing a plane crash in a distant cornfield. The plane exploded and debris filled the sky and as she ran frantically toward the wreckage, she saw me and sister Beth walked from the crash. She said the thing that stuck out to her most was that though we were covered in soot, we were not afraid. She said we were unhurt and that my jaw was set.
She had no idea about the separation or everything that was blowing apart in my life. I knew the dream was from the Lord.
A month or so ago I posted a couple of photos of the grounds of Camp Union. Angela, a native Minnesota girl, had never been to camp, but I got an excited facebook message from her : “Kate, the picture of camp looked familiar to me and then it hit me- its the backyard from the dream!”
This weekend was one of triumph- the triumph of God’s goodness over the enemy’s schemes to take us out, the triumph of love over hate, the triumph of redemption over broken heartedness. It was a picture of the restoring, redeeming, replacing nature of God- that He longs to give back what was stolen, to satisfy His children, to stave off any shame that wants to attach to those He loves. Saturday David saw me like he has been so intentional to see me in the last half a year. He’s showing me in a new way how God views me.
I cried on the leg of the flight from Dallas to Reno as the man I love held my hands and whispered in my ear all of the things that will never separate me from his love. The tears came and kept coming, rolling steadily down my face, as I let the honesty of his heart bless me in a way I had yet to know.
Thank you Jesus for being so present and so obvious and so tangible.
(** for all of you want to seephotos, I will be posting some soon **)