Note from Carrie: Since Melinda is going to be gone for awhile, she wrote up the story of how she and Jason met before the wedding. Their story is an amazing story of God’s hand in the little details of life.
It is interesting to reflect on the various people and events God used to bring Jason and me together in a relationship. It is particularly humbling to realize that God was at work in bringing us together back when I was despairing that I would ever get married.
In a sense, I can say that it all began when my sister, Carrie, got pregnant with her oldest son. Ever since Carrie, my twin sister, had gotten married, I had longed to be married as well. Yet, despite desperate prayers, God seemed to be entirely silent. There were many people who prayed on my behalf, knowing my desire to be married. There were those who walked beside me while I waited. There were those who encouraged me.
I came to a point where I was willing to face life as a single woman. The desire to be married never left; in fact, on some days it was quite discouraging to think about living my entire life with such a strong, unmet desire of my heart. But I knew God had a plan.
Like I said though, God was at work. Carrie got pregnant for the first time in 2007. She and her husband decided to attend a childbirth class in preparation for the birth. Their childbirth educator was a woman named, Jamie.
Fast forward three years. Carrie had mentioned how much they had liked Jamie, but I didn’t really think anything else about it. Three years later, Carrie was ready to pursue getting her own license to teach childbirth classes. At this point, she reconnected with Jamie.
Carrie and Jamie spent quite a bit of time talking with each other. On a particular occasion, they began to talk about me. Jamie knew about my desire to get married because she read the blog my sisters and I wrote on. One day when she and Carrie were talking, she told Carrie that she thought I should be a little bit more outgoing and purposeful in trying to find a husband. To help out, Jamie gave Carrie the web addresses for a dating website.
When Carrie called to tell me about Jamie’s suggestion, I was a little bit
surprised. I didn’t know Jamie; I thought it a bit strange that she was so quick to offer to help me. But I was definitely open to an online dating website. I had considered eHarmony a year previously but it hadn’t worked out.
After considering the website Jamie suggested (Christian Mingle) and discussing it with my parents, I went ahead and got an account. I was quite excited! I had visions of the perfect man coming along right away . . . but that didn’t happen.
The very first night I received an email from the first guy. I was so excited! Maybe he was the one. Our correspondence however,
didn’t last more than a week. I discovered while talking to him some fairly big (to me at least) theological differences that would practically affect family structure. Because of the conversation with this man, I quickly realized that I needed to be quite sure about what was important to me in a man and what I was willing to compromise on.
As different guys began emailing me, I began to find out more and more the areas that were important to me and the ones that were not. I correspondend with a lot of guys! Some of them were very nice . . . the types of guys I could have been friends with but wouldn’t be able to marry. Others were strange . . . or a bit creepy.
Even though there were a couple guys I enjoyed corresponding with, there wasn’t anyone that I agreed with theologically and that I was attracted to. It began to get overwhelming. I got my mom to help out as my secretary. When one guy would email me, I would let Mom know and she would correspond with them. I told her, “You email him, and if he’s interesting let me know!” She was very helpful in assisting me with correspondence.
It began to get discouraging as well. It seemed there was no one that I agreed with on all the important issues. My subscription to Christian Mingle was set to expire in February. Sometime early to mid-January I decided that when it expired, I was ready for a break. Online dating had been fun . . . but it was time to take a break.
Well, on January 23, I got an email from Jason. (Interestingly, he had also decided to shut his account down and was about a day away from doing so!) When I got the email, I let Mom know, and she replied to it. He had asked me a couple generic questions . . .questions I knew Mom could answer.
It wasn’t too long though before I discovered that Jason was a very interesting person. No matter what issue we discussed we agreed on it. He was respectful, and he loved his family. He wanted to have a big family, and he was interested in having a stay-at-home wife . . . two issues that were big deals for me and it was quite difficult to find a guy who agreed with me.
I quickly let Jason know that if he was ever interested in a serious relationship, he would need to email my dad and get to know him. He was fine with that and also let me know that if we ever entered a relationship, he would want me to email his mom as well.
Jason and I emailed each other every day. He would send me an email when he got home from work, and I would reply the following morning. I eagerly anticipated his emails! Before the first week of emailing passed, Jason let me know that he was ready to email my dad. Dad and Jason began a correspondence. Before too much more time passed, I let Jason know I was ready to begin getting to know his mom.
We continued emailing each other regularly for several weeks. On February 14, we chatted on IM for the first time. Our first IM conversation was a bit awkward, but I discovered it was much easier to carry on a conversation via IM than it was by email. I was able to read his replies quickly. On that day, Jason asked if he could call me. I was very surprised! I told him to let me think about it. I don’t enjoy talking on the phone and wasn’t sure I was ready to take that step. After thinking about it and talking to Mom and Dad, I went ahead and
emailed Jason with my phone number. I told him I didn’t particularly enjoy talking on the phone. He replied, sending me his phone number and letting me know that he would wait to call until we were both comfortable with talking on the phone.
The following weekend, February 20, I was sitting in church, when I suddenly realized that I was starting to really like Jason. It hit me that I was beginning to fall for him, and I had no idea what he was thinking about the future of a relationship! After church, I told Mom that I thought I need to email Jason and find out what he was thinking. She agreed. So I wrote an email to Jason, in order to find out if he was serious about a relationship.