You + Me = 14

celebrating my 25th birthday, 2005 at Red Robins (I used to L-O-V-E Red Robins) in Washington DC

You know, Nathanael is my favorite subject to write about.
That’s only because my wife won’t let me write about her — unless I pay for using her name, image, likeness, etc. That’s what happens when your father is a pastor. They just use you for sermon illustrations. It doesn’t matter how embarrassing the story may be to you, as long as it compliments the sermon, you’ll be exploited.
I don’t do that. At all. *Sheepish laugh*
Once Nathanael demands to get paid for every time being used for an illustration, I’ll have to get a dog or something…

All that to say, while Nathanael might be my favorite thing to write about, Rahel is my favorite thing to think about.

Today, we celebrate 14 years as a married couple.

I remember meeting her in January of 2004.
There was just something about her that captivated me — beyond her being so pretty.
I knew I had some semblance of a chance because that was when Wesley Theological Seminary aggressively recruited younger students. There were less than 20 of us under the age of 30 during that year. I think the average age of seminarians were mid 40’s to 50’s. I mean the school’s cafeteria would close at 6pm. That means the 20 year olds that dormed on campus would have to finish dinner before 6pm.
I’d get so hungry by the time 10p rolled around…
But I felt at least that worked in my favor in that she probably didn’t want to be with some (really) old dude…

So after hanging out with her quite a bit (we had the same classes; we worked at the same church; we had the same circle of friends), I decided to shoot my shot and asked her to a dinner and a movie. I believe it was 50 First Dates. (On a side note, do you remember when Adam Sandler movies were good and actually funny? What happened…. Outside of UnCut Gems… but I digress.)

She said yes!
… and then proceeded to invite a mutual friend (that was a dude).
Since Rahel can’t defend herself on this platform, I will mention that there are lots of disagreements of how this event unfolded.
She claims I never asked her on a date.
I insist that asking someone to a movie and dinner is a date.
She insists that the way I asked; the manner I asked was far from any romantic intentions.
But, again, we digress.

Oh but that was a start of a wild and beautiful journey that we are on to this day.

It is a testament to her character, the size of her heart, and the amount of patience she possesses that she has been able to put up with me and all my antics and shenanigans for 14 years.

14 years.
I feel incredibly loved and incredibly blessed.

Happy anniversary, Love.
Thank you…
for being the brightest source of light in my life.
for pushing me to be better than I was yesterday.
for carrying me when I didn’t or couldn’t move forward.
I don’t know where I’d be without you and I don’t know who I’d be without you.

So here’s to us and 14 years.
May God bless us with more.

Whatever souls are made of, yours and mine are the same.
(adapted from Emily Bronte)

3 thoughts on “You + Me = 14

  1. Happy 14 years to you and Rahel! Wishing you guys so many more, I loved reading this. Adam Sandler’s movies were funny. I hope you guys had a great one in celebrating! 🙏🏻❤️🌺

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