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Josh & Christina

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The Story of Kirk & Sarah
Key: regular type=Kirk; italics=Sarah

I [Kirk] first noticed Sarah Dickey when she was straightening chairs. It was the fall of 2001, and we were preparing a room for a children's program put on by our home school group. I thought, "Here is a young lady who notices needs and takes care of them" - I liked that. During that week's skits, games, and hard work, I became interested in Sarah. However, I had one problem - I was 20 years old and wasn't ready for marriage. I had made a commitment to courtship; an agreement with my parents that I would save romantic relationships until I was ready for marriage. Therefore, I kept the relationship between Sarah and myself at a casual friendship level.

K&SIt wasn't love at first sight, but it was definitely close. During a week- long children's program in 2001, I began to notice a number of things about Kirk that I really liked. I enjoyed his sense of humor and his love of fun, admired his humility and his walk with the Lord, and loved how absolutely great he was with children. We found we had a number of common interests. (The things you remember when you write these stories!). We were both allergic to nickel and had to wear watches with Velcro, we were both neat freaks, and we loved to tease. One particularly enjoyable activity was being in skits together, where we learned that we worked very well together. By the end of the week, I would have to say that my interest was peeked…well, I might go further than that, I guess I would have to admit that I had a crush on Kirk.

I left in January of 2002 for Little Rock Arkansas to volunteer for one year with the IBLP Prison Ministry. That summer, I mentioned to my Dad that I was interested in Sarah. He said, "Well Kirk, you lack two things - a good job, and a college degree". He basically told me I had a while yet before I was ready. One year in Little Rock stretched into three, and I gained more responsibility and maturity. I still had Sarah in the back of my mind; no one else I met could compare with her. I was a little worried about waiting. After all, any guy in his right mind could see that Sarah was just great. However, I figured that if she ended up marrying someone else, then it must not have been God's will for us to marry. We had occasional contact through our families becoming friends and doing joint activities, and business phone calls to IBLP headquarters where Sarah worked for a while. Every time we met, it was a challenge to be patient and stay just casual friends.

When Kirk left for Little Rock, I was very disappointed. Although nothing had been said, I was pretty sure he liked me, and I guess I had hoped that something might come of it. Come to find out, God had just begun our story, and wasn't nearly done with it yet. I desperately fought the battle of the heart. I remember praying one day that the Lord would PLEASE give me Kirk for a husband, and quick! God answered me right away that day with one word…wait. He also kept talking to me about keeping my heart pure for my husband, and since I didn't know exactly who that would be, that meant keeping my heart free from any romantic entanglement with Kirk. Because of a commitment I had made with my Dad in this area, I had to go to him often and ask him to pray for me because Kirk was often on my mind, and I desired to like him more than I felt I should at that time.

During my last year in Little Rock, I was getting restless and thinking about Sarah and marriage. At the end of the year, I ended up moving home and taking a good job with Mono County. In January of 2005, I was still restless and looking for fulfillment. I wasn't finding fulfillment in my relationship with the Lord. Although I'd been taught all my life that I was supposed to find fulfillment in Him, but it just wasn't happening. Finally, I came to the point where I realized that I was doing religious stuff because I wanted to make other people admire me. I decided to just be real about who I was and the struggles I was going through. I became willing to admit that I had problems, and that I wasn't the perfect Christian I had wanted others to believe me to be. It was then that I realized the Lord's grace and love in a deeper way and I learned to love and enjoy my relationship with the Lord. During this time, I came to the point of surrendering a relationship with Sarah to the Lord. Though I was still interested in her, I decided that I'd rather draw closer to the Lord than anything else, even if it meant giving up my dreams of Sarah and marriage. I told the Lord that I was committed to doing things His way.

Kirk stayed on at little Rock… and stayed on at Little Rock. I think I began to wonder if he was ever coming home! Meanwhile I spent a lot of time in various ministries, building new skills and learning a lot about working with people. My work in Chicago would occasionally bring me in contact with Kirk by phone, and I always looked forward to those calls. [I had his work number memorized so I always knew when he was the one calling]. All the while though, God kept knocking on the door of my heart, and asking me to keep marriage in His hands, not mine. I struggled a lot during this time with finding contentment in the Lord alone, and with serving Him as a single. Slowly, ever so slowly, God taught me, and one day I realized with great joy that I was content, and ever so happy in that contentment.

How it started I don't exactly know, but shortly after finding contentment in the Lord, He started bringing up points of discontentment in my heart to be examined. I found I wasn't ready to give them up or deal with them, and followed after my own ways and desires. I began to choose my way more often than not, was soon very unhappy, and knew my relationship with the Lord and my parents was not what it should be. Then God started asking me a bunch of "Will you trust me?" questions. I decided I wanted to spend the year 2005 working on my relationship with the Lord, so He and I worked on just that. During that time, God continued to ask me to trust Him and give Him the things I held dearest. One of those things was the never ending hope I held to one day marry Kirk. I came to the place where I surrendered that completely, and put it in the Lord's hands. He asked me the same thing with most everything, until one day, I told the Lord, "Yes, nothing is more important than You. What I want most is to do whatever You ask, go wherever You call". I came to understand God's rest and peace like I had never experienced it before.

As my relationship with the Lord started growing, He began asking me "What if?" questions. I'd finally come to the place where I'd say, "I'd be willing to do that if you asked me to". God would then say, "OK, just wondering". One day, I felt the Lord asking me, "What if I wanted you to marry Sarah?" "I'd be really happy!", I replied. I felt the Lord leading me down that matrimonial path. His direction was confirmed through my parents blessing as I spoke with them about Sarah. On December 26, 2005, I took the fearful plunge of talking with Sarah's father. After we corresponded for about three months, he gave me his permission to win Sarah's hand in marriage. The Lord blessed our time of courtship, and found out that Sarah had been interested in me all those years. As we talked of practical matters, our dreams, goals, and just plain mush, I felt the Lord's confirmation that Sarah was the right one. I asked Sarah if she would marry me, and she joyfully consented.

Early this year, I began to suspect that Kirk was getting serious about marriage, and that I was the object of his interest, but I didn't know for sure. I realized that I still hoped to be his wife, but that I could trust God as the Giver of good gifts to guide and direct my path. I once again left Kirk and I in His hands. Soon after, I told my closest friend that I was ready to serve God either single or married, and that I could be happy either way. Two days later, my Dad told me that Kirk had asked to court me! It was another month or so before we started courting, and it was hard to wait. We began courting early in March, and enjoyed a wonderful three months of getting to know more about each other, our goals, and our dreams. Then on June 17th, to my unmatched delight, Kirk asked me to marry him! I give God all the glory for what He has done and how He has brought us together in His perfect time.

Today, we stand here to be united in marriage, overflowing with blessings from the Lord, and joyfully giving Him the credit for how He prepared us for each other and brought us together in His time. We gave the Lord control of this area of our lives, and he has given it back to us in a way that is so much better than we had even dreamed.