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How I met Ben

 
I met Ben’s family this weekend and it was really fun. I was really nervous beforehand. I knew that it would be fine, but I didn’t know what they would be like which kept me from knowing what to expect. I wrestle more with worry when I don’t know what to expect. They were kind, caring and just the right amount of silly. I felt at ease with them almost immediately. I’m feeling that much better about becoming a Striker.
But, that’s not really what I want to write about. I guess it will just be an extra gift of information from me to you.
I want to tell you about how I met Ben.
I told this story several times this weekend and remembered how much I love it. Yes, I am extremely biased, but I think that we have a great story. And, I haven’t shared it here. Until now.
It was a sunny day in October of 2010. God had already given me the idea to quit my job and move back to Rockford so I could spend more time in the house of prayer and do private practice counseling. I was home for the weekend and R2HOP was having a 12 hour burn (prayer and worship). Anderson Organics Farm was hosting it in their barn and Ben was there.
I noticed him right away sitting behind the drums, wearing his green hat. I remember being relieved that I would be singing in front of him because I was less distracted having him where I couldn’t see him. We were introduced after we finished playing and I could have talked with him all day long. I actually tried. I kept finding my way to wherever he was and tried to talk to him about every single thing I could think of. I knew that my mom, my sister and anyone who knew me had noticed my unusual attentiveness to this man, but I couldn’t care less if they judged my behavior because I was so eager to connect with him. We spent most of that day together and I enjoyed every minute that I shared with Ben. My heart felt engaged and alive.
He didn’t ask for my phone number, much to my chagrin, and after two more brief encounters, he disappeared from my life completely. I was really disappointed. I couldn’t understand why God would introduce me to such a great guy and allow me to feel such connection if He wasn’t planning to develop more of a relationship between us. I looked for Ben every time I was in Rockford for at least a few months. I really hoped that he would turn up again. But, he never did. And eventually, my feelings quieted. I came to feel thankful for the experience of meeting Ben because it had given me hope that God knew the desire of my heart for great romance with a house-of-prayer man and that He was able to bring someone into my life who would stir my heart in that way. I focused on engaging in other areas of my life, where God was obviously moving, until He decided to answer that prayer and fulfill that hope.
In September of 2012, I was sitting in the R2HOP room at another burn when Ben walked in the door and onto the stage to lead worship. I was stunned to see him again. I was even more stunned that it only took 20 minutes of him leading worship for my old feelings of attraction to be resurrected. However, I trusted God’s leadership more this time around. I had to leave before I could talk with Ben and I decided to entrust all of my feelings for him to God. I asked God to decide what, if anything would happen between us and I determined to honor His decision.
When Ben and I did finally reconnect at the beginning of December, just six months ago, it was a great reunion and I was able to be my trusting-in-God-which-makes-me-unusually-calm self. And then, when he asked for my phone number through a mutual friend just a few days later, I absolutely jumped up and down and shrieked like an excited girl. God is so good and so loving.
I’m going to stop here, but I’m thinking of writing more of our story as we get closer to our wedding. I want to remind myself of what God has done and is doing. I also hope that other people who are waiting on God for unanswered prayers to be fulfilled may feel encouraged as they read about how God has been answering my prayers.
Still Counting Gifts:
·         #779: The gift of skittles
·         #780: I really like my new office and July 1 is coming
·         #781: Ben is helping me to create a cohesive theme to use in decorating it
·         #782: Hot tubs, even when they aren’t quite hot enough
·         #783: Terrible allergies tell me things are blooming and growing
·         #784: Amy had the fastest graduation ever
·         #785: I got to spend a whole weekend with Ben and his family
·         #786: Golf carts
·         #787: Laughing hard, until I start to cough
·         #788: New business cards
·         #789: Pink shoes to wear to Karyn’s wedding
·         #790: How rain makes the earth smell clean

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