How did I know that Cornelius was the one I was supposed to marry?
(us on our wedding day, about 5 minutes before our first kiss! ;-)
As you all know, my single life wasn't the prettiest picture. I was a hot-mess to say the least. (I blogged about my single life here) I struggled by jumping from relationship to relationships on a crazy search to be whole. It was SO hard for me for a LONG time. THEN, I got SICK & tired of being SICK & tired. And I broke up with my then boyfriend in March 2008. Then, I felt like a email blast went out & all these guys kept asking me out. I knew it was a distraction. So I turned down a ton of good "christian" guys--I had NO peace about those guys. I just knew that they weren't it. I knew that I had a call on my life to go into Ministry--there was no question and whoever I married needed to have the same vision. And it wasn't enough for them to just "SAY" it-- I needed to be able to watch their relationship with Jesus myself & see some stuff' working. You cannot perpetrate the Holy Spirit. I knew HIM-- I KNEW when He was really active & moving in somebodies life and I knew when one was giving lip service. When you're that close to someone, you can SEE their life. Even in their weakness--what do they do with them? Do they turn to the world for comfort or allow God to strip them EVEN more so that they can be made into the image of Christ???
My husband WALKED by me for three years straight at church. We were in meetings together for years, saw each other from a distance, said hello every now and then and even at one point-- I walked into a room and it was just him and one other person in the room-- and I left the room and thought... (this was 2007) "I bet Cornelius is going to ask that guy for my phone number"-- but he never did! I wasn't LOOKING for him to ask for my phone number, at that time-- I was very confident in my little self! haha! I was thinking "I can have whoever I want, because I'm fly." Hey, it's a stretch from how I used to think so whatever. :) I never thought about it again after that moment as I'm sure I had a little boyfriend at that time.
On January 4th, 2009 after church we started talking for the first time about the church fast that was coming up. I asked him if we could eat honey or soy milk. So then, he said answered and said, "I'm going to put a cow in the ground & grow it"-- (the fast was food from a seed in the ground only). So, YES-- Cornelius started flirting with me on the low! Then he started to ask me about New York (he lived in Atlanta) and how hard it is to get around especially if you have a ton of bags from grocery shopping. Then he asked me who "helps me with my bags" (2nd time trying to find out if I have a man lol)-- I told him that I carry my bags, take a cab or I use a NYC cart.
I entertained CORNELIUS for the first time in almost a year because there was something different about him. During that time where I finally got single, I started really getting on my FACE daily before God. I went on dates with Him, talked to Him about EVERYTHING-- would spend weekends with a jug of water and my bible & just spent crazy time with Him. Note that even while I was dating randoms, I was doing this as well. Spending time with God is crazy vital. So important for your spiritual growth. HOW do you trust someone you DON'T know!? I blogged about it Spending Time with God, be sure to read it.
I had an OVERWHELMING sense of peace when I met my husband. Its like God was like FINALLY. I've been able to connect them both when they're both finally single. Let's all be clear-- I wasnt' ready those 3 years prior when I saw him. I was READY on 1/4/09. Period. Does that mean that I was "perfect" or I had "arrived" in wholeness? Heck no. I HAD a ton and I still HAVE a ton of things to work on. On Christmas day, 2008-- I was surrounded by my family and one of my sisters was like, :when are you going to start having some babies!? Your clock is tickin' (I was 26)-- I told her, "shouldn't I be married first?! I wont' have no babies with some random. When I meet a man that is FIT to be my husband and raise this next generation-- is when I'll have some kids. So as soon as I know, I'm sure you will too. Until then, I'm content in Christ. HE is all I need." Later that day, I was spending time with God and I cried out to Him.. .I said, "Lord, YOU are all I need"-- I'm SO happy and so content in You. If I'm single for another 10 years, I don't care-- YOU are all I want. YOU are all I need." Then, He told me that I was going to get married at 27. I was shocked! I was like, well, if I'm going to be married at 27, you need to bring homeboy soon because I have NO prospects. Not ONE. You told me to cut them all off and it's just me & You. So, work it out Lord..
10 days later, I met my now husband. 1 year and 8 months later and 1 month before my 28th birthday.. I married my hubby.
1. First, I finally had peace. Most guys I dated, God didn't like for us to be together-- even when I would ignore my little peace and try to make it work.
2. He refused to kiss me until our wedding day. The bible says to "Flee Fornication" for a reason. "Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body."- 1 Cor 6:18. So if homebody keeps on pressuring me to sin against my body, he clearly doesnt' love GOD or me. Jus sayin'. He SET & kept those boundaries. He did everything he could to protect me, my integrity and most importantly, honor God.
3. His vision lined up with what GOD already TOLD me. I knew in 2005 that I was called to preach and share Christ to this hurting world. Sorry, I wasn't marryin' no rapper. Yeah, he could change-- but I didn't want to wait 40 years for him to come around & change. I needed to see the guy I was supposed to marry actively pursing God RIGHT now.
4. I kept getting better in the relationship. Cornelius wasn't a stumbling block for me. He was REALLY concerned that I had a relationship with Jesus alone that was not founded in my EMOTIONS. He refused to let me depend on Him and He ALWAYS pushed me towards Christ.
5. God was ALL up in my quiet time pressing me to pray for Him & build Him up and God always encouraged me to love Him. GOD was giving me CONSTANT instruction with Cornelius. It was pretty cool. One day I was mad at Cornelius and the Lord told me-- "Why don't you ask me how to deal with Cornelius? I created Him, I can show you how he works." .. oh you're right God. lol
6. He shut me down. I don't care how you flip it-- most women like discipline from a man in the sense that THEY are leading the relationship. I was confident that Cornelius knew where he was going and he didn't need me to lead the relationship due to his confusion. I have a STRONG personality and I needed someone to tell me no. In the past, I manipulated guys so it was nice to get called out. So, Cornelius is a LEADER. I didn't want to ask my guy my whole life.. where are we going & take his little leader reins.
7. When he said something, he would do it. Guys, you gotta keep your word. How can I believe in you if you don't believe in you or what you say?
8. I was attracted to him. I had to put this in-- sometimes, we think we have to marry someone we aren't attracted to because we think that he's it. Once, I dated this guy that I wasn't 100% attracted to and I struggled with it and thought I had to marry him because he was one of the first Christan guys I dated after I got saved. I didn't know there were cute Christians. Jus sayin'. I wanna LIKE looking at him for the rest of my life. Yeah, stuff can happen but one of my desires was to be attracted to my guy. NOT the main desire, but one of them.
9. He was growing. While we courted, he was willing to ADJUST and change. I knew that when things would come our way, He would man up, admit his mistakes & CHANGE. He wasn't trying to hold on to his old ways. He wanted to be better and was willing to adjust. AND he let ME grow. He wasn't all hard on me-- pressuring me to be some doctor or lawyer because it looked good. He let me grow UP from all of my weaknesses & issues. He HELPED me & was patient with me.
10. With all of that said, he really loved Jesus. It encouraged me. Jobs can come and go, money can leave, looks can fade but if that man really, I mean really loves Jesus and wants to live for Him-- NOTHING is impossible. My spirit was so excited about every aspect of Cornelius. I was never NOT at peace with him. I wanted so many things in a man and I never thought I would meet someone with my desires. God exceeded my expectations and my husband MEASURED up. Yours will too.
11. (Bonus number) I RESPECTED HIM alot because of the above. Don't marry someone you don't respect or look up to.
Remember this is no formula. I am just sharing what was important to ME. Let God lead you every second of the way. And if that guy or girl hasn't come.. they aren't supposed to. Keep your eyes in your own grass and focus on GOD & working with your portion. Let GOD be your matchmaker.
God loves you like crazy,