By: Tim Sader
He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord. (Proverbs 18:22)
After the loss of my brother it took a while to get my mind and body to where I was ready to enjoy my life again. About two years later our van got smashed up and we needed a new one. My friend Julie helped make this happen when she planned a benefit to help us raise the money for a van. The love that God showed that year was incredible I can hardly believe it when I think about it. Getting a new van opened up a world of possibilities because we could safely travel longer distances than before. At the end of 2013 I was using eharmony and Samantha H. finally responded to my first questions after a few years. We quickly asked our own second questions and her responses really got my attention. What I remember most is that she knew the Lord and wanted me to know about the church she attends and what it means to her. Since I wasn’t a paying member I wanted her to be able to contact me off of eharmony so we exchanged emails and found eachother on facebook. To my surprise she was in a wheelchair like me and she was equally amazed to see I was disabled also. Neither of us ever considered dating another disabled person because it is difficult enough to start a relationship with only one person disabled. At the beginning of 2014 we both got someone to bring us to Columbia, SC the halfway point an hour and a half from both of us. We had pizza at Mellow Mushroom and we knew we would be more to us than we could dream of at that time. For Valentine’s Day I left my house after a rare snow storm to go see her three hours away in Summerville, SC. We did a few more dates in Columbia but those were never enough so mom and me made monthly trips for sometimes a week at a time so we could make long distance work. One time I surprised her when I rode three hours to go to the concert she was at. After thinking her friend was taking her out for the day I surprised her again at that coffee shop when I proposed to her there six months later in front of her family and friends.
I knew for a while before asking Sammy to marry me that I wanted to but since we were disabled I didn’t know how it would work or who would take care of us. After a few dates we noticed that nothing was normal about our relationship and that was what makes us beautiful. Later at Sammy’s church pastor Jenn preached a message that we don’t want to be what is normal so we will be alright. One of the most difficult parts of us getting married and moving to Charleston was leaving MorningStar church in Fort Mill. The Lord helped me by showing me unity between them and Ashley Ridge Church. Three times the same song would be played at one church or the other on the next Sunday after I heard it. I received words, heard similar messages at both churches and even a book I read came up in one of pastor Jenn’s sermons. I heard a message from Justin Perry about him and his wife being in a long distance relationship before getting married. They made it work and were twice as far from eachother as Sammy and I were of course neither of us drive so that’s an added person in the equation. All these were confirmation to me that I found what is good for me when I found my wife and the favor of the Lord is upon us. My friend Cliff gave me a word that Sammy and I are the two bottom corners of a triangle and the top point is the Lord, we are a team and He will be with us if we keep Him in it. No one can lay any foundation except for the one that has been laid, which is Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 3:11). If Jesus is our foundation then then our love for one another will be patient, kind, not envious, boastful, proud, disrespectful, selfish, angry or keeping score. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails but if we fail to love the gifts of the Spirit will not properly function (1 Cor. 13:4-8). Love has never failed for Sammy and me because we were married on April 11, 2015. We found a way to make not normal work for us thanks to supportive parents, our aides and Ashley Ridge Church family. Alone we can do very little but together we can do so much.
Lord I pray that 2018 will be the year we realize that life is all about you loving us, us loving you and loving others. If you have been less than our foundation Lord we invite you onto our team so that we can know that you are always with us. Help us to learn better love by loving the people better who we are closest to or by showing love to who we think is unlovable. Those who may be looking for a someday spouse I pray that steps will be taken in the right direction so they will be ready when they find who is good for them. In Jesus name, Amen.
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No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16