By Amy Ingram
A Love Story
“I have found the one whom my soul loves,” (Song of Solomon 3:4).
Hi y’all, it’s me again. It’s been quite awhile since I’ve written for the magazine, mainly because I’ve been adjusting to a new job, teaching on the side, trying to maintain my good grades in graduate school (I’m almost done—HALLELUJAH!), and dealing with all kinds of changes in my personal life. Needless to say, I had to take a little hiatus from writing as my days were jammed pack with activity.
In March 2016, I had two very difficult conversations within a two-week span of one another. The first, my dad—He had cancer. I drove home to sit with him during his first chemo, and during the family dinner the night prior my mom told us she also had cancer. Can you imagine?
We had just started to adjust to my dad’s news when we had to shift gears and focus on my mom’s news. At one point during the span of those four challenging months, my brother and I were both “on call”—one in the hospital to take care of my mom, and one in the cancer center to tend to my dad during chemo.
Dad couldn’t even go into the hospital to see his wife because of the germs. It was HARD, but the prayers of the saints sustained us, encouraged us, and ultimately held us in perfect peace as we walked that journey. Mom and dad are now both in remission—PRAISE JESUS!
We finish what was one of the hardest years as a family with some very exciting and celebratory times—I’m getting married! All the longing and waiting has subsided and the Lord has brought me the most precious man!
As I’ve waited and longed over the years, there have been two very specific prayers I’ve prayed:
- That the man the Lord had for me would pursue me steadily and slowly from a distance, allowing me to get comfortable with him and feel at ease prior to us being in a dating relationship.
- That the man the Lord had for me would be willing to actively fight for me—for pursuit of me, for my heart, for my mind, and for our relationship.
This man has done both. In fact, it’s been quite overwhelming at times.
Before we started “dating,” we spent a month on the phone, every night for hours, getting to know one another. We discussed our dreams, desires, hopes, failures, pasts, etc. Neither of us phone talkers before we met—and yet, we made it a priority to get that time together every night.
We established communication as a priority in our relationship early on, both recognizing the value as immeasurable. It also allowed me to get very comfortable with Parker and feel at ease with him, which made dating so much easier. That level of communication afforded a depth in our relationship that was necessary for both of us.
As we dated, we hit a challenging patch where the Lord told me to fight for Parker, and to wait on him, as HE was working in his life. As we neared the end of that patch, Parker said to me that he was “going to fight for me for the rest of our lives.” I knew in that moment that a prayer was answered, the Lord had given me Parker, and this man was going to be my husband.
I think it’s extremely valuable to tell you that Parker looked nothing like what I imagined I’d end up with. I don’t mean physically—he’s extremely handsome and I’m very attracted to him. I mean what expectations I had built in my mind.
I think I had put such a box on who the Lord could bring me that I lost sight of the Lord being so much bigger than I could have imagined. Had I not allowed the Lord to work in my life and deal with some of my issues, I would have missed this jewel of a man, waiting to pursue me the way I’ve always desired to be pursued.
I say all of that to encourage you to be open to what the Lord is doing. Don’t put such hard parameters around your future mate that you miss the beauty of what could be in store for you. I promise it’s worth it.
For those of you who have walked with me over the years and read my articles, please join me in celebrating this season of longing coming to an end. I hope and pray the same for you as well.
Be loved, beloved. For you are most definitely loved.
Amy Ingram is VP Account Management at a branding and marketing firm in Oxford, Mississippi, where she lives with her dog, Mabel.