Alrighty then. I totally didn't do the whole "Thankful Month" blog entry thing. Oh well. All those things I'm thankful for (family, friends, work, LIFE) were keeping me busy! ;)
However, I had to come anddocument something that happened that I am oh so very thankful for: Blake became a Christian and has decided he wants to be baptized. This is something I, and many people, have been praying for for a very long time. God's timing and plan is something that we cannot control - even though at times I tried. The moment(s) I let go and let God handle the situation were the moments when Blake willingly wanted to know more about him and he willingly asked to do a Bible Study with my dad and his brother and he willingly came to know the Lord on his own. It's something a lot of people had a hand in but no one could make him do.
For 8 years Blake and I have been together and for those 8 years I prayed, I cried, we argued over religion and biblical perspectives on marriage, raising children, and life in general. I begged him to come to church with me and I begged him to do Bible Studies but on his own he decided it was time. And, that's exactly how it should be. Me, being the control freak that I am, had some very difficult moments. I wanted Blake to know God's love so badly. I wanted him to just "get it!" I didn't know if it would ever happen but I'm so glad that it did.
I was in an un-equally yoked marriage. I knew going into this that Blake didn't believe in Jesus. He wasn't agnostic or atheist; he just didn't believe some parts of the Bible but he did believe in God. He talked to him and obviously felt something. I had a small emotional break-down (lol...it wasn't that bad) about a year into our marriage. I knew this major difference between our Godly views was going to be an issue in our marriage and when we decided to have children. I was really sad and depressed about it. But, I knew I had done something God has directed us not to do; do not be un-equally yoked with a non-believer. Well, I had already said my vows and I do love Blake so there's no turning back, no leaving on account of something I knew from the beginning. Two wrongs don't make a right and I knew that no matter the arguments or disagreements there was no leaving Blake because of this. However, how I dealt with it could be changed. Accept my mistake, ask for forgiveness, work on my own relationship with God, and pray for my husband.
Over the years Blake slowly asked more and more questions and then started reading his Bible. After our daughter was born something clicked and he wanted to start a Bible Study with my dad and ask his brother, someone who has also been such a prayer warrior and someone for Blake to talk to about things, so they started at the beginning: Genesis. Over about the course of a year they read and studied and examined the Old Testament. During the course of the study it ended up being just Blake and my dad meeting each week but as the got to the end of the Old Testament Blake stopped calling my dad and meeting him on Sunday evenings. I asked if they decided to stop and Blake just said, "No, our schedules just got busy..."
Many nights we would talk about things and what he was learning and his new perspective on things. One night, it came out that he was kind of scared to start the New Testament and had been dragging his feet. He was at the point where he said that he knew what decision he wanted to make but now it was right in front of him. Does he accept jesus as his personal Lord and Savior? All this studying, was it for nothing? But, he picked up his Bible again each evening before bed and started the New Testament.
On December 1st, on our way back from the most perfect date night spent together in Austin, the radio was playing K-Love, I was sleeping in the passenger seat and he was praying and said he felt God hug his soul. How totally awesome and beautiful is that? While he was thanking God for a perfect night and for all the things in life, talking to Him about life he said he felt like God hugged his soul. I am still like, "WOW!" How long have I been "asleep" in my own walk?! I want to feel like God hugged my soul! I was so happy hearing him tell me this. It was such an awesome feeling seeing him tell me how he felt.
So, soon, when it warms up in March or April, he wants to be baptized out at his families ranch in London, Texas. This makes his mom very happy; it's a place she loves to be. And, it's God's beauty all around. After he told my dad he asked him if he would baptize him and of course Dad said yes. Dad has baptized all of us in our family except for Chris, my sister's husband, who was already baptized in his own church he grew up in. I can't wait and I'm so happy I will be there to witness it, and that our daughter will be there. She'll be only 18 months old, not sure she will remember it, but regardless. It's a new life and fresh start for our little family.
In our evening chats Blake asked that I re-dedicate my life. He knows that by him just asking me to do it can't make me; I have to want to do it and want to go along on this journey and change along with him, and I'm totally willing to do that. I know over the years I have wandered from where I need to be with Him. It's funny. Here I was the entire time the Christian, a preacher's daughter, and now Blake, at the time a non-believer, by studying the Word knew, and still knows more about the Bible then I did/do. He's asked that I spend time in the Word and really focus on loving other people and being happy; just like Jesus tells us to do. Blake's sister-in-law, after telling her how silly I feel because Blake knows more than me and I feel I should, being the Christian in the relationship, said something that was great. She said, "Now that he is a believer and knows so much because he's been studying; now he's the head of the spiritual household; just as it should be." How awesome is that? I have longed to be able to turn to Blake, my husband and talk to him about spiritual things and get his advice and guidance, and over the past year or so I've been able to do that. God gives us so many gifts but that is one I'm so thankful for!