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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

L'amour de ma Vie

"The Love of my Life!!"

This month we celebrate 7 years of marriage!
I thought it's time I share a bit about how we met:
I love this story....

Jake and I met in March of 1998. Our parents had known one another for most of their lives, but had lost contact. They decided to meet again during our family vacation to Florida. It was at this time Jake and I were introduced. One month after we met, he left for a commitment he had made in Africa. He would be there for a total of one year. Throughout this time, Jake came home as often as he could and so our relationship blossomed….in the following timeline you will find my journal entries leading you through the path of our journey toward marriage….
we start with my first entry, the night we met….

March, 1998 ~ Tampa, Florida.
I feel such a bond with this man. I have been blessed and strengthened, but most of all, changed.
I could marry this man.
He is all I've ever prayed for and believed for. I feel so close to him, like he needs to be with me ~ a completion or something like that. Our last evening together was spent watching the sun go down over the ocean….conversation flowed almost effortlessly; it was gentle, yet serious, yet comfortable….always comfortable.

“But He knows the way that I take. He has concern for it and pays attention to it. When He has tried me, I shall come forth as refined gold, pure and luminous….For He performs that which He has planned for me.” Job 23:10, 14

June, 1998
Jake is in Africa now, I miss him terribly but we talk often. I just know there is a reason the Lord has brought us together. There must be something in store for us, how can anything this wonderful even be real? His will is all we want.

“For the Lord God is a Sun and Shield and no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11

September, 1998 ~ Tampa, Florida.

Jake is home from Africa for a few weeks so I’m in Florida to be with him! He took me to a great restaurant called, “The Castaway.” The food was good, the company even better. It felt like a big dream being with him again. After our time together I don’t prefer walking alone any long. He gave me a card and it reads: “Dear Janelle, when I stop and think about our future and what it may hold I realize I don’t have to worry because if His plan is for us to be together, than so be it. We won’t make it happen.”

“My heart is like a singing bird.” ~Christina Rossetti~

December, 1998.
Today a Christmas gift arrived ~ Jake. He is here in Pennsylvania for a few days and then I’ll go to Florida with him before he leaves for Africa again. Guide our lives.
We trust You….we trust You!

“To be content in bliss without desire or insistence anywhere, this was heaven, to be together in happy stillness.” ~D.H. Lawrence~

March, 1999
This distance is really getting to me….to us. This is hard because we don’t know what is happening. If we ever get married, I want our world to be painted glorious colors unknown to many: colors of joy. colors of peace. colors of security. Could I ever be Janelle Stoltzfus?!?
Be anxious for nothing.

“Any they who know Your name will lean on and confidently put their trust in You, for You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You.” Psalm 9:10

April, 1999
I’m in Florida again to be with Jake. When I arrived I found this card,
“Janelle, this whole world could not contain the joy
you bring to me and if God had given me the whole world
I would still choose to be with you.”
I am falling deeply and strongly in love with this man.
I am noticing the incredible, abounding, overflow of kindness that pours out of him.
We went to “our” restaurant again, “The Castaway.” Jake and I recognized that we believe we are meant to be together! It was so hard to leave one another once again.
He won’t be home for four months.

“Somehow I know we’re not apart
for I still hold your love inside my heart.”
~Beth Chapman~
As Paul Harvey use to say, stay tuned for "the rest of the story..."


Chris & Megan said...

I can't wait to read the rest!!!!! What a wonderful couple you two are!

Bryan Allain said...


Christina said...

I just started reading your blog. I can't wait to hear the next part of your wonderful love story!

Anne said...

I love this story...

ervina said...

What a lovely beginning. Peeks into journals always make me smile.

jansphotos said...

janelle this is absolutely beautiful!! i got teary-eyed reading your love story! so refreshing and brings hope! it is such a stunning picture of heavenly romance, and speaks loudly, yet gracefully! i love love love the way you express yourself through words, you have such a gifted and beautiful way with words!! and i'm so encouraged by the way you were ever constantly running to the Lord for strength and guidance! wish you both many more happy memories and years together! thanks for sharing your personal journey...this is stellar! =) jake is a blessed man to have a wife like you!

Claudia Barkman said...

wow janelle.
this makes me silent and wishful.'s so beautiful! it reminds me of a jim elliot/ elizabeth elliot journal entry. wow.

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