Once upon a time I met a man.

He was tall and lean with impossibly long arms that reached all the world in to the circle of his strength. Almond blue eyes beckoned and flashed. A smattering of freckles and a tousle of unruly hair hinted at the boy inside all that convincing conviction that drew others in like bees to honey.

The man emanated intensity.

For a long time I watched that man from far away. Others talked and I listened— leaned in close to hear the man speak. Those first words caught me, drawing me in, inviting me to linger.

In that man I heard a heart beat for God.

Every week the man taught and I, caught in the crowd around him, absorbed the truths he spoke. With greatest care he opened his enormous Bible, flipping pages, leaning forward, compelling us— me to come close, to jump in, to believe.

And we did.

And I did.

And he pulled us in to the One who had rescued him, showing us how to live in a way that honored that Redeemer. Tirelessly he taught us about Jesus, painting a picture of life lived in absolute surrender. A compelling life of purity and passion and purpose.

And all of us fell in love with that Savior of his…

And I fell in love with him.

Shy as I was, it took a long time to dare to let him know. How could I ever hope that one such as he would possibly look my way?

But he did.

Once, twice… a question… a lingering… a hint of maybe.

And so I practiced that secret art every woman knows. Subtle and soft but with all the determination of a tigress on the prowl, I skirted around the edges of his world and invited him into mine.

And he came.

When he talked I listened and I heard and I said it back… and something happened. Something magical and mystical and just a little strange.

Because he heard too.

All the words I couldn’t say. All the thoughts I wouldn’t speak.

He heard— me.

And for thirty-three years we have danced and circled and held onto the hope of forever.

There are three things that amaze me—

no, four things I do not understand:

how an eagles glides through the sky,

how a snake slithers on a rock,

how a ship navigates the ocean,

how a man loves a woman.

Proverbs 30:18,19

This mystery is great…

Ephesians 5:32

Happy Anniversary, my love.

From my heart,