Lisa was 43 years old, past the age of marriage by most people’s standards. She had faithfully prayed for a husband for 20 years.
Then, miracle of miracles, Lisa met Ryan.
Ryan and Lisa became engaged four months after they met. Lisa had two bridal showers, ordered her bridesmaid dresses and decided on the most beautiful wedding dress she had ever seen. Then, Ryan got deployed.
When the day arrived for Ryan to leave for Iraq, Lisa arrived at Camp Pendleton to say goodbye. She was with Ryan’s dad, Ryan’s ex wife, and Ryan’s two kids. They all waved goodbye like a progressive hallmark card.
9 months later Lisa was the only one not there to welcome him back.
During the first few months of his deployment, her communication with Ryan was pretty steady, but eventually the letters and phone calls tapered off. A military chaplain comforted Lisa by saying Ryan was probably in a place where he couldn’t deal to much with life at home. If she loved him, she would wait.
In the meantime, Lisa turned 44.
The actual break up came two days after he returned. They held hands and sat through many pregnant pauses.
Then he spoke:
“I still love you.”
Lisa’s heart jumped a little, thinking it all might have been a bad dream.
“I think I love you too.
Do you still want to get married?”
He paused for a minute. Then he said “No.”
Months later Lisa found out Ryan actually did want to get married, just not to her.
Ryan remarried his ex wife the year after he returned.
The reason I know this story is the name of the woman was not Lisa. It was Laurie.
It was me.
In the months (and years) that followed my broken engagement, the loss of my dream led to a crossroads of whether or not I could hold on to my faith. In the darkness of disappointment, I struggled. But ultimately I decided to trust.
That choice became the impetus for my book.
— This excerpt is adapted from “Finding Faith in the Dark”. To find out more about this book, visit this link: http://www.amazon.com/Finding-Faith-Dark-Story-Takes/dp/0310337119/ref=la_B00IKAGCDG_1
Thank you for sharing this story, Laurie. I first heard of you on the Boundless show, and was instantly drawn into your warmth and sincerity. I have found myself with a series of broken relationships, engagements and disappointments. My most recent break up was with another believer and I had high hopes he was the right person. I was quick to believe that because he stated he was a Christian, that meant he was one. The facts and realities proved otherwise and I was very heartbroken.
My 37th birthday is coming up in a month and this post helped me a lot. Thank you for being such an inspiration of hope and courage.
thanks for writing Judy! so glad it was an encouragement. The book could be too- lots more stories of hope, but not the “cookie cutter” kind:) Hang in there- God is not through with your story!
Hi Laurie – I heard you on the Boundless Show as well. I am turning 44 this year and I’ve never really had a boyfriend. I have endured cancer and I often hesitate to tell anyone the details of my day to day life because people are horrified. Christians don’t know what to say and wind up using my story as the, “I thought my life was bad until I met her…” (literally I’ve been introduced as such). I do hesitate to share the details of my life because Christians my age cannot relate, and treat me as though I did something to deserve my circumstances. I can relate to feelings that my story makes God look bad.
wow Heather. What a testimony. I have another blog on “When Testimonies should happen” and you are a great example of holding on in the middle of the story.
I do believe your story isn’t over. And the way you are touching people right now is bigger than you might ever know. I hope you’ll read my book- it’s not just my story, but several others of people who have held on to God in the dark. Here’s the link if you are interested: http://www.amazon.com/Finding-Faith-Dark-Story-Takes/dp/0310337119/ref=la_B00IKAGCDG_1
Blessings to you dear one