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Meeting Isaac

I have been woefully neglectful in keeping up with this blog. In fact, it has been over a year since my last post! And what a year it has been! I have MUCH to update you on. In my last post I was lamenting my long time single status and sharing that I was intentionally putting myself “out there” a little more to better position myself to be found by the one God had chosen to be my partner in this life.

Amazingly, just days after that post was written I met him! It was sort of by accident, though not by coincidence. After waiting years for the right guy to just show up at my church, I dreadfully joined a couple of Christian dating sites that espouse the doctrines of my local congregation. I was always against meeting someone online, but being very introverted and having no single guys in our church I finally started opening up to the idea. It was a pretty horrible experience. I talked to several men, all of whom were clearly not the one. There was the guy who outright told me that I was ugly. There was the guy who upon a Google search (yes, guys, we google you) was found to be on several porn sites in addition to the Christian dating site. There was the guy who rejected me because I wasn’t a virgin (I didn’t become a Christian until my mid twenties). He told me that he knew my past was under the blood, but he just couldn’t get past it. Then there was the guy who seemed great on paper, but in all of our conversations, he never asked me a single thing about me. I was good enough to date, but not good enough to actually get to know. His thinking was that I would be his helpmate which meant that I would be helping him with his ministry and therefore my dreams and goals in life didn’t matter. He was not interested in who I am as a person at all. I was very frustrated by these encounters and had almost resigned myself to being single forever.

Then one day one of my friends (who writes tech reviews for a living) asked for some volunteers to download a new app and tell her what we thought of it so that she could write a review. It was not a dating app, it was just a platform where ideas could be exchanged.  I decided to help her out and give this new app a try. Someone on the app posted something and I posted a response. While I was responding, someone else also responded. This sparked a conversation between the other responder and myself. The original poster never returned to the thread, but I hit it off right away with the other guy that had also responded. We talked all night long. In that very first conversation he already knew more about me than the last guy had learned in all the time we had been talking. We chatted for hours the next day too. And the day after that. I vacillated between being utterly drawn to him and holding back out of fear. There were a hundred different times that I almost ended the conversation because it seemed crazy that I was talking for so long to a stranger. He could be anyone. He could say anything and I would have no way of knowing if he was telling the truth. I was very nervous about the entire thing. I always jump ship even when there is no sign of a leak so I kept having to remind myself that he hadn’t said anything wrong yet. I kept reminding myself that I had committed to putting myself out there a little more and that until he gave me a legitimate reason to end the conversation there was no need to do so. He didn’t know where I was or any identifiable information about me. The worst thing that could happen would be that I would have wasted a few hours of my life.

I learned that this man was raised an Orthodox Jew, but had converted to Christianity in his early adulthood. He had attended Bible College only twenty minutes from where I lived and that he lives only about 15 minutes from where I go to church. I was intrigued! Eventually, I gave him my number so that we could text directly. After a while he asked if he could call me. I said yes, and then didn’t answer the phone when he called! At this point, he still didn’t know what I looked like. I was sure once he saw me that he would run for the hills. I didn’t want to get my hopes up only to have them dashed. We ended up connecting on Facebook. It was after we connected there that I could see he was probably being truthful about the things that he had told me so far. His Facebook page had been created years prior so I knew it wasn’t likely to be a fake account. It also confirmed the things he had told me and it started to put me at ease. Amazingly, he wasn’t scared off by my profile picture. Ha! Eventually, we met in person (in a public setting of course). That’s when things got real. He and I were a great fit! Only a couple of weeks before we connected I had made a list of all the qualities I would like in a husband. I wrote down 32 items and he perfectly matched 31 of them! Interestingly, the new app didn’t last long. It was shut down only days after we met. We like to think it only existed for that short time so that the two of us could meet.

We often joke on this blog that we are “looking for our Isaac.” Wouldn’t you know that this man’s Hebrew name is Isaac! There are many things that my “Isaac” had been prophesied to be. I never put much stock in these prophesies because I think that people tend to fit them to what they want rather than what is, but here was this man fitting every one of them!

I spent much time in prayer as I was getting to know him. I kept asking God to close the door if he wasn’t the one, but every time I asked this, the door kept opening wider. He began attending my church shortly after we met and has been faithfully attending since. I watched prayerfully as he interacted with my friends, family, and brothers and sisters in the Lord. I spent a lot of time on my knees while we were dating. I took some time off away from him to be sure he was the one.

Things moved quickly for us. Within a few months he had given me a promise ring. A few months later and we were engaged. Now a year after meeting him, we have just recently been married!

I never imagined that my life would change so quickly, but it has been an amazing journey. He is thoughtful and sweet. He treats me so well that I have trouble accepting it at times. He is not without flaws, but nothing has ever felt so right as knowing he is the one God meant for me. He is the one I have been waiting all these years for.

I cannot describe how glad I am that I waited. There were many times where I considered settling. There were times that I was tempted to compromise my holiness and standards. There were times when I was so lonely that I almost wished I lived somewhere where they do arranged marriages. That thought frightens me now. I could have missed out. I might have missed all of these blessings.

If you are still waiting for your Isaac. Please don’t give up or do anything you might later regret. If God has not said no to marriage for you, keep waiting for God’s best for you! Do not give up or give in to temptation. Keep waiting!

In His Love,

Rebekah L.

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Guest Post: Emerson of Words From a Feather “What God Has Taught Me About Marriage and Love”

Editor’s Note: Our weekly guest spot is our effort to help our reading community connect with each other. Emerson is the daughter of our very first guest post contributor Heather Mertens of 40yearwanderer  and what a talented family they are! For all of us still waiting for “Mr(s). Right,” may her words encourage us now. 

I’ve been thinking a lot lately – about love, marriage, future family. I know every girl dreams about it, but this is different. I’ve started seeing it in a whole new way. True that I’ve gotten older and more mature, but something happened that changed my perspective. I started to really see into the details of what it means to love. I don’t see it as trying to find the right guy to fall in love with almost as if it would happen by some magic, but instead I see it as completely giving it over to God and trusting Him because He always takes care of me in every part of my life. I always knew that if God’s plan for my life included someone to share it with then He would bring me the right man, but what changed for me recently is how I feel about it. It was always a nice thought, but I never really thought too deeply about it. Now, I’ve started to realize just how amazing it is that He loves me and cares for me so much that he has someone waiting for me who will love me – truly love me, even with all my many imperfections and mistakes.

I realized the more I focused on God and my relationship with Him and the more my love grew for Him, the more free I was to love others and myself. And then something happened that I can’t even begin to describe or even completely understand. I started to feel love for my future husband. I never knew it was possible to have that deep kind of love for someone I don’t even know. It makes me so excited and emotional to think about being able to actually get to express that love to my future husband someday, and it makes me cry. Cry like I just watched a Nicholas Sparks movie kind of cry. Only much deeper. It’s a true longing and desire to know the one that God has made for me to love. I actually feel a sense of missing him, and I don’t even know him yet.

Maybe you think I’m crazy. I know nothing about actually being married, I’ve never had a boyfriend, and I’ve never even been on a date before so I don’t know what it’s like to love a person to that extent. But it’s not thinking I love someone I know, it’s knowing I love someone I don’t know. There’s a big difference there and I’m aware of that. I know that this is something that is coming from me getting closer to God and wanting what He wants for me. God has put that love inside of us all, and it is a true love because it comes from Him.

I see now that the biggest blessing in marriage is not to be loved by someone, although that is an incredible and indescribable blessing, but to given someone to love and to be able to fully love them. It’s something I know only God completely understands, and He’s giving me only a small glimpse of it. I really wish I could put how it makes me feel into clear words, but there is no way to describe it exactly. I want to tell everyone out there how it feels to know that God has already taken care of it all and the peace it brings, and that they don’t have to go searching for love. Love has already found them, and He has someone for them that will love them more than they could even begin to dream about.

I talk to God about it and I pray for my future husband all the time. I pray for our future relationship and I pray for his relationship now with God. Instead of trying to find the “perfect guy”, I’m striving to become the person and the future wife that God wants me to be while I wait for the one He has for me. I always want to be myself and be loved for who I am, but I want to always be the best of myself – the woman that God made me to be. So instead of only wishing and dreaming about love and marriage, I’m preparing myself for when that time comes. I want God to always be first in our relationship, and I want my husband to always put God before me. I pray that we can build each other up and also help and support each other in our individual relationships with God. This has also made me see friendships and family in a whole new way, and how every kind of love is an amazing blessing from God. I don’t ever want to take any of it for granted.

I could really write about this forever because it’s such an amazing thing to think about, and that is only a tiny bit of what God is showing me now and how I feel. That’s all I could manage to get into words, and I prayed that God would give me the right words to express it in the best way that I could. I just wish everyone could see the truth about His love and what He has prepared for those who accept it. I hope this helps anyone who is waiting for their future spouse to come along. It has certainly helped me and I am beyond excited about the future and what God has planned. And I have to admit, I’m more than just a little excited to finally know who it is that God has had for me to love all along.

-Emerson

Bible_With_Ring_Heart_Images_by_Emerson_Website

Images by Emerson – © Emerson Mertens

 

Emerson Mertens is a 19 year old choreographer, dancer, and teacher, who writes about what God has taught her already in her young life. You can read more of her inspired, faith filled life at her blog.
Published by permission of the author. Submit your own post at beingrebekah@outlook.com. 

Prayer Monday: Renew My Hope

Jesus,

I was verbally attacked this weekend by a source I never would have expected.  What seemed a foggy path turned crystal clear but also the road not taken looked more and more dark. It seemed as if the darkness was reaching out to get me.  The pain of it being insinuated that I would never find someone really hurt.  Something in me longs for Isaac- in the right time! I am in no rush to start a relationship, I just wish the right one was on the horizon at least.  But here and now I ask You to just renew my hope. Renew in my heart the fact that I have hope in You. Renew in me that even if I am single for all my life- You will give me a full life.  I will serve You no matter what. I am Yours no matter what. But Lord, I just pray right now for my faith and hope to be renewed that You hold only good things for me. To let the accusations and barbs fall away.

Renew me Jesus,

Rebekah M.

Bitterness: A Spiritual Abscess

When something gets infected, sometimes instead of healing the right way, puss builds up in a pocket and as the pressure builds, the patient feels increasing amounts of pain. The area becomes red, hot, and can even ooze a little. Sometimes it will finally burst open.

This past winter when I was working the ER, there were multiple patients that I had to help perform an I&D on (incision and drainage- cutting it open and getting all the muck out).  The ER doctor said to me “THE definitive treatment of an abscess is an I&D. You can give them all the antibiotics you want, but unless you go in there and get that infection out, most will come back with it again.  And you can’t just cut it a little and push on it a little, you have to give it a good cut, use an instrument to break up the locules (little pockets), and really squeeze hard to make sure you get EVERYTHING out or else you’ve done nothing for them.”

When we are injured in life- be it from family, friends, people from church, or various circumstances- we either heal the right way (which can take some time), heal with deep scars, or even end up with a deep root of bitterness in our heart.  As the bitterness festers, the anger, hatred, and dark feelings grow and grow. It can overflow a little here and there but ultimately, when it is bad enough, God needs to go in and do surgery on our hearts.  He had to do so on me once before.  For those who have been following along with my journey, over a year and a half ago, my first boyfriend broke my heart to pieces and even though God did help me heal some, I had a root of bitterness that had grown in deep. The cut was so deep within my soul, and I hid it away for so long, that it took visiting my brother and sister in law in California with my parents and two guest preachers working in sync with the Spirit to get God to muck out much of it.  I wrote about the experience in a post but that was not the only time God has worked on me.

Sometimes it feels like we are being torn up from the inside out. It feels like our souls are being mucked out, pushed, prodded, and broken up in ways we never imagined. This process though, can be of God to help break up the walls that have been created that hide the infection of bitterness, anger, and hatred.  As time has gone on, God has continued to break down the walls I have against my ex and his friends.  I am MUCH improved but I know God is making me go to the city of our (and also my.. as in ever in my life) first kiss for residency to help make sure that the last walls are broken down.  I cannot be fully ready to accept my future “Isaac” unless every last wall and pocket of bitterness/anger/pain is broken down and cleaned out.

What do you have festering in your heart today? Is there anything that God needs to go in and muck out? Are there pockets hiding away in your heart built up to protect you from things in your past? Do you see that all those walls are doing only keeps pain/bitterness in your heart?  Let it go! Let God work on you! He will heal you more completely than you could ever imagine. He will bind you up with His love and give you a new heart. Just trust His process and see that He truly is the great physician!

Thank You Jesus. Thank You for Your amazing ways.  Help us be wiling to go through Your “I&Ds.” Help us trust that even if it hurts at the time, it is for our good.  I love You Jesus. 

Rebekah M. 

Related posts:

https://beingrebekah.com/2012/10/07/forgiveness-and-renewal-revisited/

Prayer Monday: Breaking Oppression… Again

Lord,

I thank You so much for everything You did for me yesterday.  Thank You for everything You have been doing in the last week. What a miracle! What a miracle that You broke me free from all that was in my life.  These readers don’t know it, but I thank You that yesterday at church You lead the pastor to prophecy over me.  His wife never told him anything about what was going on in my life specifically so that should her husband say something to me, I would know that it was truly of You.  Thank You that yet once again someone spoke into my life.  Twice in one week. Once to warn me of the path of destruction I was on and the second time, after a week of repentance and seeking You, to reaffirm Your promises in my life. I know it was You because some of what he said was specific prophecies that had been said over me years ago by other people. Thank You that I didn’t sell my birthright like Esau (Hebrews 12:16).  Thank You Jesus!!!! Thank You!!!!

I didn’t even think of my life being oppressed but thinking back to what the preacher said during his prayer over me, he said that the demons that were in my life were leaving.  That Your power was healing me, making them leave.  I have allowed the spirit of lust and more into my life.  In the world we live in today, it is SO easy to feed it with even just “innocent” movies. It is so easy to see things that invite and then feed the spirit of lust in our lives.  Forgive me.  Forgive me for thinking that in my own strength I could “handle it.”  I can’t! We can’t! There is so much filth in this world that is just seen as “normal.”  Forgive me for thinking that I was okay.  Forgive me for thinking that I wasn’t sinning because I was “pure” by the standards of the world.  Forgive me for thinking that I was above others in terms of being weak to sin.

Thank You Jesus for setting me free from the thoughts that You had forgotten me.  I see clearly now that it was the enemy.  Thank You for setting me free from the delusion that I am not weak to sin (what arrogance! what pride!!!).  Thank You for humbling me in a way I could handle.  Thank You for Your mercy and grace!!! Thank You for Your wonderful ways! I love You Jesus.  I thank You Jesus! Thank You that I no longer fear and doubt You like I did.  Thank You that You freed me from the influences of the spirits of fear, doubt, lust, and jealousy.

Jesus, I right now pray for those who find themselves in a similar place. I pray that You restore to them too the belief of hope! Restore their hope in You again! Restore their belief that YOU ARE FAITHFUL! You are faithful to believe! We will receive and we will reap if we just don’t faint!!! Don’t faint my fellow readers!!! Don’t faint!! Just ask Jesus to give you strength and He will! Even if His help doesn’t seem like help at first- you may discover that what seems like a chastisement is your greatest strength! I couldn’t ask for stronger prayer warriors than my parents, godsister and prayer partner. You are so faithful to me, reveal Your faithfulness to these readers.  I pray this post encourages them. I pray this posts strengthens them and reminds them that You will carry them through whatever battles they are fighting right now.

I love You Jesus, truly with all my heart.

Rebekah M.

Related Posts:

Breaking Oppression

A Daddy’s Chastisement

A Daddy’s Chastisement

I wrote this post yesterday afternoon shortly after yesterday’s, timing it to be published later this week. Today, I received my chastisement and Rebekah L invited me to take her day to write about things as they have happened… it floors me how I wrote this PRIOR to what happened. I’ll explain more at the end. 

So I have been trying to work through all the layers of feelings behind why I have been falling into this relationship with this guy and there are MANY things I see.

A) He and I truly have SO many things in common. We’re only a month different in age so we know MUCH of the same references from childhood and we always find something outdoors to do.

B) We communicate well together. It’s kind of freaky when we randomly hit a stride in our convos where his or my texts are the answers to what the other person is texting that moment. Granted it makes sense in a way because conversations are on topics and thus have a finite amount of topic space, but it has happened multiple times in the same conversation before. Also, he and I text/skype/message each other throughout the day. It never feels too much or too little.

C) He makes me feel in person how God makes me feel spiritually- cared for, secure, safe, like I can try to conquer anything and he’d be there to catch me if I fell.

But despite all this, it’s eating away at me. It eats away because he’s not in church. I have always longed for a guy who would lead me in prayer. I longed for a man who would lead our family in a journey towards passionate pursuit of Him. A man who would have no qualms of calling a family fast. A man who would be so assured in God’s ways that when God told him something, no matter how crazy it seemed, he’d be willing to drop all for Him- as much as I feel I have done with my life.

I have dropped everything I know and love for Him. I have left home and all that I know to live this life, knowing that He is the one who has taken me here and knowing that all I do is in and for Him. And yet now… here I find myself splintering because here I live this life where I have dropped everything for Him, and yet I find myself attaching more and more to this guy who hadn’t even been to church in years until this past Sunday when he went with me.

I felt like all I deserved was a cosmic spanking.  A beating of epic proportions for doing what I shouldn’t be doing. So I cowered away from God, afraid of how His chastisement would play out.  Would He rip away my blessings? Make me never be able to become a doctor? Cause me to live life unfulfilled- never a doctor, never a missionary, just a nobody with no purpose… which is my greatest fear. To live a life that amounts to nothing- no spiritual legacy, lived my life that amounted to a mountain of nothingness.

Then my friend pointed out that Jesus is a Father to us. He’s our daddy. As my friend said:

 Remember, He’s a Daddy who loves to bless his kids, not a godfather who gives favors in exchange for good behavior…

And it sparked a thought in my mind. Just as my parents have always known how best to reprimand me, God knows how best to chastise me.  If He has a purpose for me becoming a doctor, why would He rip that away as punishment when it would cause me to fall away from the path He truly wants for me? The chastisement needs to match the child.  As I expressed this to my friend, he replied:

Yes… spanking is not the first or best method of training children. Patience and teaching happen for a long time first

So why have I been hiding from God? Afraid to ask Him to help because it felt like I’d be coming to exchange help for a heavy toll.  Would God truly rip away all hope of an Isaac because I just seem so lost and confused right now? I have to hold on to the hope that He is good despite my fears and doubts. I have to hold on to the hope that it is safe to express my doubts to Him and that instead of exchanging punishment for expressing my fears, He will exchange faith and bless me for trusting that He is able to help me overcome the fear and doubt.  I have to hold on to the hope that He truly is a good Father who knows how best to punish me and that just as my parents always knew when I needed something to just help me push through the hard times- that sometimes, even though maybe I deserved a punishment- they gave me a reprieve instead for they knew what was best for ME . I just have to believe that He will know what I need more and what actions are what I need to help prod me to where He wants me to be.

Love,

Jesus You are my love. Jesus You are my everything. Jesus I am holding on to the fact that as my parents have loved me into going the right way in the past, You know what I need more- a rod or a loving prod.  You know what I need more so I have to trust that You aren’t going to just punish me over and over again if I just reach out to You and so I do now.  I reach out to You and believe that You will chastise me how You see fit.  I just keep being hurt over and over again by guys in the church so I just have a hard time believing an Isaac exists for all I see is good guys out of church and guys who are either jerks or will never pursue me in the church. Help me believe that Isaac exists. Help me be like Rebekah yet once again. Help me bring myself back to the roots of it all- passionate pursuit of You as I patiently wait for the day I meet Isaac. Love, my Jesus, You are my God and my salvation.  You are my everything.

Rebekah M.

So last night my parents received an email by someone in another country who has prophesied accurately multiple times. He revealed via visions what has been going on between the guy and I and I could not have been more mortified than that. The guy and I have been physically affectionate and although we didn’t do THAT, we have done stuff.  

My parents’ disappointment has always been THE greatest reprimand that I could ever receive. I want to make them proud. I want to make them feel joy and happiness when they think of me- knowing that I am a good daughter who brings them honor.  The only saving grace was that even in the visions, it was obvious that I didn’t do THAT. However… the whole time my parents were reading the email, I just felt how much it felt like it was God’s way of chastising me. The punishment was the most it could have been before “a cosmic spanking” in which those consequences would be irreversible.

The email ended with the fact that if I do end up doing THAT, my salvation is on the line. We have choices that we all have to make. I need, I MUST, choose to pursue purity in Christ with all that I am, for all that I am today is because of Him. Without Him, I am nothing. So without pursuit of purity in Him, I will become nothing.

Lord, despite my mortification and shame, I thank You for Your chastisement that awakens me before I mess up beyond repair. I thank You for Your grace and mercy. I thank You for Your unending love that would even be willing to shame me before my parents, knowing it would spark their full prayer support and an awakening like no other.  I thank You for Your ways, even if they sting right now.  I love You Jesus, 

Rebekah M. 

Related post: https://beingrebekah.com/2013/01/06/the-shame-game/

https://beingrebekah.com/2013/01/28/praying-monday-pressing-on/

https://beingrebekah.com/2013/02/14/the-visions-part-1/

https://beingrebekah.com/2013/02/28/the-visions-part-2/

https://beingrebekah.com/2013/04/12/the-visions-part-3/

https://beingrebekah.com/2013/05/02/the-visions-loved-like-gomer-was/

Unexpected Blessings: Concerts and Policemen

Concerts: 

Tonight, I got to go to the concert of a conductor friend of mine.  He has worked so hard to get to where he is today.  It was amazing to me that I was there for his very first performance back in high school and today, I was able to see him conduct a powerful group of singers in a prestigious music program. My how far we can go! I was unsure if I should take time away from church (my last service here in this city) to go, but then on my way I felt God tell me it was okay. Low and behold, the last song was about putting our hands to the plow, holding on, and moving forward. The vocals were phenomenal- it reminded me that God’s creation is so amazing and perfect. That JUST voices could create such a beautiful, powerful sound struck me with awe for His great ways. To top it off with lyrics that hold such meaning….  what a blessing where I was least expecting it!!!

Policemen:

All my life I struggled with self esteem issues until Ex #1 broke up with me, I went on an over 2 month fast, and God transformed me so completely from the inside out that I realized it was GOD esteem that mattered.  It doesn’t matter what I look like on the outside, and yet I realized that God made me beautiful.  I saw who GOD saw me as and so it mattered more that I was praying than grooming time did.  I cared more for thinking of what things pleased Him than I did about how I could do things to please guys in how they saw me.  When I looked in the mirror all I saw was that God created me beautiful. Lately, I’ve felt fat.  I’d look in the mirror and for some reason, even though I haven’t gone up a size in clothes yet, all I see is the fatness.

Tonight, as I was walking back to my room at the hospital (I’m living in the hospital this month), one of the policemen that guard the ER asked me out.  He was tall, good looking, and straight up stopped me to ask me out- my kind of guy! It was just so assuring because it felt like to me that Jesus was saying “see? You are still beautiful, even when you don’t see it. I will bring you a husband… in MY timing.” For along with the feelings of physical ugliness, I just starting wishing I had a husband.  My brain would ruminate over the fact that Ex #1 is married (while I am not), so many other people are married, and so many others are also having kids and sending them to pre-school etc. etc. etc.

I want a family that lives for Jesus.  I want a husband who will lead us all on this journey towards Christ with a passion for the God of creation.  I want a man who will be a father to our children, a prayer partner that connects with my spirit, and a friend who gets my soul.  I also realized I’m pretty superficial and hope he’s CUTE! haa! Is my definition of cute the same as everyone else’s? Not always. haa haa! And this policeman was certainly good looking in my book! So I think Jesus was just saying- wait some more on ME, my child. Wait.

Jesus, 

Thank You for these unexpected blessings.  Thank You for things to make me smile and soothe my weary soul.  Thank You for Your goodness and mercy.  Thank You for reminding me You find me beautiful.  Give me strength to just WAIT. I love You Jesus with all my heart. 

Rebekah M. 

BTW- for those wondering, I told him I was moving tomorrow (because I am) so I wouldn’t be able to go on a date with him… it was still a nice way to end my day though 🙂