After leaving you all in suspense for 24 hours, I have to share with you that Brian really wants to tell “his side” of how we met! He doesn’t have time to do it right now, but stay tuned as I imagine he will be writing from his perspective soon. 🙂
If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” Mark 8:38
At 5:00 pm on January 1, 2004 I was laying in my bed watching Harry Potter on HBO when I received a call on my cell phone from a 703 number. 703 is one of the northern Virginia area codes, but I knew that I probably didn’t know the person calling because most of my friends were already programmed into my phone. Thinking it was probably a wrong number, I almost let it go to voicemail, but suddenly realized that it *could* be sweater guy calling!
So I answered on, like, the 7th ring to hear a big Ohio accent on the other end of the line. It was indeed sweater guy! We chitchatted for about an hour, and at the end of the conversation he asked me out for our first date. We had a wonderful time, drinks at Fados, dinner at La Tasca, and the night ended with a kiss under the arch over H street in Chinatown.
During conversation that evening, I started to ask the questions to see where Brian stood in his faith. I had just returned form 2 short term mission trips to Guatemala in 2003 and had a growing passion for World Missions. This entire experience with sweater guy was so random, I didn’t want to miss out on a God ordained moment, but I still needed to know if we were like-minded in our faith. I was very pleased to learn that Brian was a Methodist and had been actively involved in Young Life in high school and was a leader for Younger Life in college. I remember going to the ladies room and calling my friend to tell her that sweater guy was a Christian. It seemed too good to be true.
The Make or Break Moment…
As Brian and I continued to date I began to realize that, while he proclaimed he was a Christian, we were definitely mis-matched in our faith. My first clue should’ve been that he lived in Fairfax all his life and had never heard of McLean Bible Church 😉 At the time he was attending a small Methodist church in Burke, one with very few young adults, so I invited him to come with me to Frontline. He quickly fell in love with the worship and the teaching by pastors Ken Baugh, Jim Supp, and John Park and was coming with me every Sunday. However, I was still uneasy at thought of me being a “stronger Christian” than him. Wasn’t I supposed to date someone who could be my “spiritual leader” ? How do you rate people based on that expectation, anyway? It all seemed really strange to me at the time. I really liked Brian. He had amazing qualities, integrity, and spirit. I wasn’t going to break up with him just because I knew more Bible verses than he did. However, many of my church friends were cautioning me, some even encouraging me to break up with him because he wasn’t strong spiritually. I knew this was not bad advice, but I also knew in my gut that I was NOT supposed to break up with him on this basis alone.
And then one night, the truth was revealed and I had a valid reason to end the relationship.
We were talking about my love for missions and he was sharing how he would never go on a foreign mission trip because there are needs here in the United States.(ha! never say never!) I responded by saying that God was first in my life and that if he asked me to go overseas for Him I would do it. Brian was puzzled by this and began to ask more questions. I started to share my testimony and how Christ would always be first in my life.
Brian paused, looked at me and said, “I need someone who will put me first in their life.”
And thats when I knew I had to take a stand.
I said to him, “If that is the case, then maybe we don’t need to be dating.”
He got pretty angry at that, and got up to leave. Looking back, this next part is funny to me, but as he was leaving I had my Bible in my hands as I was sharing some verses with him earlier, and as he was leaving I was trying to give my Bible away to him. I was all “here take this!!!” Hedidn’t take it, he said he had his own and I was like “well read it then!”
So Brian walked out my door that night, and I was sure I would never see or hear from him again…