Friday, November 8, 2013

The Bride Wore...Off-White :: Is 'saving yourself' for marriage worth it? :: My Journey (Part 4 - Final)

(NOTE: I'll make this testimony into a series-ish. I'll (try to) post every Friday leading up to our wedding. So much I am called to share. So, stayed tuned! This is mainly targeted towards women, but...are you a guy? HEY! Welcome! Also, this is my experience. I am in no way condemning other women/men who chose and did otherwise. Don't worry, I will be as tactful as possible and not embarrass you by any sort of non-professional language. Please be respectful to others. I am head-over-heels excited to hear, err read, your thoughts! You can comment or email me if you would like. This testimony is full of how the grace-filled Gospel worked in me, and this is my act of worship.)






(Part 3)


I am pretty sure you have already heard many details of how Greg and I met. When we did, it was different. The situation and Greg were different.

As you may already know, during this time, I was allowing God to work in my life like never before (or at least I felt like that). At this time, I started nursing school (third year of college), I joined a church, whose service was held at a pre-school, full of believers that taught me about the love of Christ, and I began a relationship with Greg. I began to explore Christianity and the meaning of being a follower of Christ, and oh my, my life was radically transformed. 

When Greg and I began to know each other and knew we wanted to begin a more-than-just-friends relationship, I was a little hesitant of letting him know of my relationship standards. However, God and Greg, the gentlemen that they are, quickly washed that shame away! When I told Greg, he happily and respectfully agreed with me.

At the beginning of our relationship, we talked about our careers, family, little every-day details, and...about God and Christianity. We wanted to find out and know what He wanted from us during this phase of life. Little did I know, Greg was as thirsty as I was to get to know and romance our Savior. He was such an encouragement through this time. We read and explored the Bible "together" (he was in Minnesota and I was in Texas). Sometimes, we had different views on a particular subject, but we found a way to communicate about what we believed. We also did something rather unusual (for me)...we prayed together (not every day, but once in a while). Some of you may agree and some of you may disagree whether a couple should pray, or not, together, but praying together was the source that brought us closer to our Savior. 

Don't think I was always like this. In fact, I was very hesitant to pray with a group of people...can you guess how intimidating it was to pray with the guy I was in a relationship with? However, God was teaching me more about my prayer life and I felt He was calling me to do it. To get over that intimidation by praying with my community group, my church group...with Greg. But that is another story. 

During this time, Greg and I felt that God had something very special in mind, and He wanted us to WAIT. You know, sexual abstinence/chastity/purity, whatever you may call it, was very, very difficult. We both had feelings, we both had desires... normal, God-given gifts

It wasn't easy.
Sometimes, we went a little more than we were comfortable with.
Sometimes, I cried.
Sometimes, I felt like trash.
Sometimes, I thought that this time, for sure, God wouldn't forgive me.
Sometimes, I didn't want to believe that God wanted us to wait.

Then, Jesus would pour out His grace, time and time again. "Don't punish her. I already paid for her sins on the cross, Father," I could almost hear Him whisper in His Father's ear. Justice. Mercy. Grace.

Needless to say, Greg and I prayed for strength and self-control when temptation came. These desires were good. These desires were meant to be felt. These desires were a gift. However, it wasn't the time.

Days ago, Greg and I were married. We made a covenant between God and ourselves. A chord of three-strands. I sexually "saved myself" for marriage. But, this doesn't qualify me as pure. This area of my life had not been lily-white. It had been more of an off-white, just like my wedding dress. However, that moment when we were saying our vows, when the covenant was established, He did it. He made us (Greg and I) one with Him. I had saved everything for my husband and I was ready to sacrifice everything for him in this marriage, aspiring together to be picture of what Jesus did for His Bride on the cross. I messed up in the past, but Jesus Christ gently reminded me He washed away my sins before I was even born, and only through Him, I was cleansed. This moment was worth the waiting. 

Purity is more than having a purity ring, reading purity books, writing about purity, wearing modest clothing or not even touching your partner. Maybe you haven't had sex, maybe you have. Maybe your path pursuing purity has been a lot different than mine. Either way, Jesus is patiently waiting for you to come to Him. To repent. Jesus can redeem you at any time!

He is purity. Purity is about Him. Only our Heavenly Father can make us mentally, spiritually and physically pure.  

His plan for us in marriage is being fulfilled. And it is beautiful. My hope is that, when others see what He did for us at the altar (uniting us in mind, body and soul), they might be encouraged in their walk with Christ and with their partners. To Him be the glory! 

My life is truly under grace

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Thank you for reading my testimony. I've felt the need to share part of my story with my friends, my community, YOU. My heart is so full of joy!

Jesus, You led me through this difficult path and this, Lord, is my act of worship.

In Christ,
Gabby

3 comments:

  1. Gabby, this was a beautiful series that you wrote. Thank you for sharing your heart's thoughts with us!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Colleen And Laura! I really appreciate you girls reading this! :-)

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