On Thursday January 8th, Michael and I will celebrate our 4 year wedding anniversary. So I thought I would celebrate by writing our love story. Michael and I went to elementary school together. In 6th grade, I would hang out with him and some other people during recess. I had the biggest crush on him. I even wrote “I love Michael Shaeffer” all over a notebook I had at home. In 7th grade we went to seperate middle schools for 2 years. When we started high school we were in the same homeroom. He was not the guy I remembered from elementary school. He was really quiet in homeroom. I would try and talk to him and he would just give snippy one word answers. We were in band together but had different groups of friends. The interactions I had with him always left me feeling like he was a jerk. Our junior year Michael and I had English together. We started talking on a more regular basis and I noticed that he was nicer than I thought ( I didn’t know at the time that he had recently been saved and that accounted for the change). Michael’s best friend and my best friend started dating and very soon they were attempting to play matchmaker. Michael started flirting with me during English and by Thanksgiving he had finally won me over. We had our first date on November 23, 1999. Of course I thought that this was the guy I was going to marry, but what lovesick teenager doesn’t think that about the person they are dating. When it was time to go to college we both decided to stay home and go to the University of Memphis. I knew that we had avoided the classic break up due to going away to college, but I was starting to wonder if we were going to make it. There was so much change going on and I didn’t know if we would grow apart.
At the beginning of my sophomore year in college the Lord started pressing on me the call to ministry I had in high school. I knew that the Lord had called me to be a minister’s wife, however Michael was very serious about being an accountant. I was convinced that I had to break up with Michael. I started praying that the Lord would give me strength to do this because I was completely in love with him and knew I couldn’t do it on my own. As I prayed about it I felt God telling me to just wait. I didn’t understand it, I just obeyed. Within a few months Michael came to me and told me that he felt called to full time youth ministry and he planned on going to seminary after we graduated. He had no idea I had been praying about breaking up with him. This is when I knew that this was DEFINITELY the guy I was going to marry.
In February of our junior year, Michael proposed in the most romantic way I could have imagined (I’ll have to write about that another day.) The next January we got married.
What I think is so amazing is that this is not the end of our love story, it is simply the beginning. We have grown more and more in love each day that we have been married. I have watched Michael put our family first and work hard to provide for us. I have been amazed by the way he encourages me and seeks to be a godly example and head of our home. I am so thankful that every day he tells me he loves me (usually several times). When I look back to high school and think about how I would dream that Michael and I would someday get married, I am overwhelmed by the fact that this is more than I could have ever even dreamed of.