This past month marked 10 years since Steph and I were engaged. It has been an amazing journey for the two of us, and I am thrilled that the Lord has blessed me with such a wonderful wife. With it being 10 years since our engagement, I got to thinking about how it all went down.
Steph and I started our long distance relationship back in April of 2007 (how we met is another story altogether…..I will save that for another time). I was in seminary in Vancouver, BC while Steph was in Ohio just starting off her counselling career. With there being 2500 miles that separated us, we had a lot of really long phone conversations, a lot of emails, and I took three trips out to Ohio. Then in early November of 2007, Steph was finally able to make the journey out to Vancouver to visit me and see where I was studying in preparation for pastoral ministry.
For a few weeks prior, I had been planning my proposal. Steph and I had talked a lot about marriage and we were already starting to plan for our wedding, but I had led her to believe that I wouldn’t propose until February. Everything was planned out perfectly……I thought. After picking Steph up at the airport, I would propose in my borrowed Dodge Caravan. I attached the ring to a string and tied the string to the sun visor on the passenger side. I knew it was going to be a great engagement proposal and a great surprise for Steph!
As I drove down to the airport in Bellingham, Washington, I was excited. I had no idea what the Lord had in store for us, but I knew Steph was the woman for me. I arrived safely and in plenty of time, and now all I had to do was wait for my future bride. Steph had managed to find a $10 direct flight from Columbus, Ohio (seriously….. a $10 flight – look up “Skybus” if you don’t believe me). When she arrived, we hugged and kissed and made our way back to the van. Here is where things started to get interesting.
When we got in the van, the first thing I told Steph was that she had something on her face. I told her she should look in the mirror so she could get it off. Of course, she didn’t really, but this was a way to get her to pull down the sun visor and look in the mirror. In retrospect, telling your girlfriend and future wife that she has something on her face right after a 5 hour flight is not the nicest thing, nor is it the best plan to start off a proposal. Not surprisingly, Steph was embarrassed, but she went ahead and pulled down the visor to look in the mirror. As she pulled down the visor, the ring on the string came down and landed pretty much where I wanted it to land……right in front of her face. Remarkably, Steph didn’t notice it. As I watched this play out, I was almost in shock. My perfect proposal plan wasn’t working out as planned. The only thing I could think of to say was, “Steph you still got something on your face.” Even more embarrassed, Steph looked back toward the mirror and this time she saw the ring! Presumably, this should have been where I started in with my perfectly worded proposal, but I was so tongue tied that I said nothing at all. Steph, on the other hand, simply said, “really?” We hugged and kissed and laughed and I put the engagement ring on her finger. Whew! Soon were on our way up to Vancouver.
So it was that through these unpredictable happenings, that we were engaged on November 8, 2007. And while it’s probably not the strangest engagement proposal ever, it is rather comical that I never actually asked Stephane to marry me and she never actually said “yes” or “no.” I guess Steph’s “really?” was all we needed. I got the outcome I was looking for and that’s all that mattered. The next 8 months would be a long wait for us, but on July 26, 2008, we were married and we have enjoyed a very happy marriage. I praise God for giving me Stephane as a wife.
Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make a helper fit for him.” Genesis 2:14
He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord. Proverbs 18:22
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. Ephesians 5:25-27