How Did You Know You Were in Love?

Every day, you can pray to be present to God’s will; you never know what’s in store for you.

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How Did You Know You Were in Love?

“I’ve been wondering,” our 22-year-old son, Tim, asked us at the dinner table the other night, “how did you know you were in love?”

Both Carol and I gulped. I guess it’s easy after you’ve been married for more than 25 years to take love for granted and to forget how it was forged, how scary it was at the time, how uncertain we both were that it would lead to the happy ending it has, or that any of this would make sense to our own child who was entering that stage of figuring out where long-lasting love could be found.

Tim knew the basic outlines of our story, how Carol and I were classmates in college, just good friends back then, how we dated other people for a couple of years and how through a courtship that began with a long-distance correspondence—I was on one coast, she was on the other—we became more than good friends. But his question was a good one: How did we know?

I filled my plate with salad, glad to let Carol go first. “I can remember exactly when I knew,” Carol said. “I was on my way to your dad’s apartment—I can’t remember what for—and I thought about how kind he was, how thoughtful, what a good guy and I knew, I knew for sure, that this was the person I wanted to spend my life with, and I was willing to do anything to make sure that could happen.”

Wow. I just sat there. I’d never heard that before. I thought of what someone had said to me earlier that week about prayer. He said every day he prayed to be very present to whatever God had in store for him for that day. Would I have even guessed in my wildest imagination that on a typical Tuesday evening, sitting at dinner with my family, I would hear about something that happened many years ago that changed my life?

“I remember exactly the moment your mom was talking about,” I told Tim. “She came over because we were making dinner for some friends who were getting married and something about working together, going to the market, cooking together... that was when I started to see it.”

You never know what God has in store for you.

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