Hi friends! I want to share with you a series of posts I wrote last year on my old blog since I have so many new friends reading my posts. I especially want new brides and prospective brides to see my story since they're allowing me to play such an important role in capturing their story and photographing their wedding day! I also never wrote the fourth and final part of our story! So I'll be posting parts one through three and then I'll end this series with a new part four. Enjoy!
My roommates and I sat on my bed giggling and talking excitedly about Alex asking for my number a few hours earlier. We decided to look him up on Facebook and see what else we could learn about him. In the middle of our Facebook stalking my phone buzzed and as I picked up I saw my first text from...Alex DiPrima!! It said, "Hey Jenna! I really enjoyed meeting you this weekend and I'd like to connect when you're in Raleigh next week for the conference." He was referring to a church planting conference I told him about that me and my Crosspoint staff team would be at in Raleigh the upcoming week. My roommates and I analyzed every word. "Connect" what does that mean? Does he mean a business connection? "Connect" and talk about Generation LINK? Or "connect" on a date?
I wrote in my journal later that day, "I am so in awe of God's provision! Even if this doesn't go anywhere, It's a reminder that God can and does provide and it's often in the most unexpected ways. Lord, please forgive me for often doubting your provision and lacking trust. You are so faithful and you hear our prayers!"
I also wrote a list of things I admired about Alex after interacting with him over the weekend. It amazes me how accurate these things are and how much I still admire these things (and many more!) about him today!
"The things I've noticed and admired about Alex so far are:
-His passion and love for Christ and the church
-His intentionality and leadership
-His humility and gentleness
-His love for his family
-His encouragement and clear communication
-His ability to connect with new people
-The community he seems to have around him
-His passion for church planting and teaching Scripture
After work on Tuesday I headed home and laid down on the couch to take a quick nap. I had just started to fall asleep when I heard my phone ringing and as I picked it up, "Alex DiPrima" popped up on my screen. My heart immediately began racing. What? He's calling me already? I really didn't think I'd hear from him until the weekend. What do I do?! I wasn't prepared for this!!! So I did what any mature adult would do, I silenced it and didn't answer.
I immediately regretted that decision. Why did I silence it?! Maybe he'll leave a voicemail. No voicemail. Shoot! I guess that means I have to call him back. Just be normal! I decided to immediately call him back because I knew if I didn't do it right then, I'd get way too nervous. "Why is he calling me already?," I wondered. Is he going to ask me out on a date? Did he change his mind?
Alex answered the phone and said, "I looked up the NACPF conference and it looks great! I'm planning on coming for a day of the conference. Also, I'm sure you're going to be really busy that week but I'd love to take you out to lunch or dinner on Monday, or Tuesday, or Wednesday..." I loved that he listed all the days I was going to be there, I felt like he really wanted to do whatever he it took to spend time with me! I told him my schedule and we decided on Tuesday night. He ended the conversation by saying, "Ok great, it's a date! See you Tuesday!" It's a date? It's a date! I guess that's what "connect" meant! I loved how intentional he was and how clearly he continued to communicate with me.
7 days. That's how much time stood between me and my date with Alex. I wavered between excitement, doubt, fear, and nervousness. One of our only communications that week was when Alex texted me and said, "I have an important question, do you like thai food?" I couldn't believe it when I read that! Thai food is my favorite! After telling him that he texted me back and said, "I'm not sure I should be saying this before the first date but I'm really exited to be going out with you."
The picture to the right was taken the day before our first date. I was driving to Raleigh and my friend Krystal texted me, "You're going on a DATE tomorrow!!!" The picture is what I texted back to her. I'm so glad I took this picture because I think it captures what I was feeling so well! So many questions were rolling around in my mind. Is the date going to be awkward? Do we have enough in common? Can I trust this guy? Is he really as godly of a man as seems to be? What if I do something embarrassing on the date? What if I really like him and he decides he doesn't like me? Or what if he really likes me and I don't know if I like him?
The morning of our date I reflected on Matthew 6:33-34, "But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."
I needed to remember those verses. Above everything else, I know God is calling me to seek Him first. God has not called me to marry Alex yet, He's just called me to trust Him enough to go on a date with him. There's no reason to be scared when I trust the Lord's leading.
I also reflected a lot on encouragement a dear friend said to me, "Know that God has opened this door for you - so don't be afraid to step through it. When my husband was pursuing me I sometimes had to remind myself that it was okay for me to open up my emotions and really 'like' him. I was afraid it was too good to be true or that somehow it was all going to end and my heart would be left broken. But God isn't like that. He doesn't dangle something good in front of us just to jerk it away. He is good and he allowed Alex to come into your life and if it doesn't work out that was His plan and He will be faithful to get you through that."
To be continued...