I was first introduced to Jennifer Lucy via Twitter. I would see the username @ThePurposeDr pop up every now and then via retweets. I thought the name was unique so I mozied on over to her page and ended up on her blog. At the end of her bio, was an announcement of the next phase in her life--marriage (and a link to her wedsite). Of course I had to check it out.
When I began reading Jennifer's account on her wedsite of how she met her fiance', I saw the introduction of a very interesting story. As I read more, I saw phrases like, "worth the wait", "sexual purity", and words like, "friendship", "purpose", and "pray" that described the details of her story. I particularly liked how she surrendered her emotions to God and sought His will about who Jeff was to be in her life. Today, Chronicles features another inspiring story of a fabulous future wife. If you're in need of encouragement to help keep you going on this single journey, then today's story is just for you.
Meet the future Mrs. Tyler.
Wedding Date: September 24, 2011
Engaged to: Jeff Tyler
Wedsite: Jeff and Jenn
How did you meet your fiance'? I first laid eyes on Jeff in 2007 at our Church’s Youth Conference. I was serving for an organization called Worth the Wait Revolution and Jeff came up to the table to get information. I remember asking my friend Natasha about him because I was intrigued by his outgoing personality, and I thought he was cute. However, I didn’t focus on him because I was seeing someone else at the time. A few months later, Jeff became a part of the Worth the Wait (WTW) organization. I was actually one of the people who interviewed him at the time. We were already aware of Jeff’s stand on sexual purity and looked forward to him being a part of the Worth the Wait family.
One night as the Worth the Wait family were preparing for an event, we had some fellowship time over Dr. Lindsay Marsh’s house, Founder and CEO of WTW. This night Jeff and I had our first real conversation. We immediately connected strongly on a spiritual level. At this time Jeff was DJ Takeover for Heaven 1580AM. Shortly after our first conversation he invited me to be on his show to share my personal testimony and minister. Throughout 2008 I was on Jeff’s show 3 more additional times. Before 2008 ended I was no longer seeing anyone and enjoying my single state. I desired a husband but it was not my primary focus. I continually meditated on Matthew 6:33 and Psalm 37:4. I knew that if I kept my focus on God and my purpose in Him that God will give me the desires of my heart.
Fast forward to the beginning of 2009; I started crushing on Jeff and it was obvious the feelings were mutual. So I prayed and told God to please expose and reveal to me what these feelings were about. I refused to be sucked in by my emotions with someone who was not my husband. When I prayed about Jeff, God always gave me peace that surpassed all understanding. God also begin to reveal to me qualities in Jeff that I had desired in a husband. I had written a vision for my husband years prior and overtime I saw that Jeff’s character, physical and spiritual qualities lined up. A short time afterwards Jeff called me and shared his feelings. He nervously shared how he felt about me. He let me know that he thought I was an awesome woman, and that he was attracted to me, but he was not ready to get married. This was in Jan of 2009.
July 31, 2009 I came home from work to relax and I received a call from Jeff. Nervously on the other line he said, “I don’t normally do this without any prior notice, but would you be willing to go out with me tonight?” My answer was simply, “Yes, what time do I need to be ready?” He arrived at my house on our first date with beautiful roses and we went to the movies, out to dinner, and then walked around the Washington National Harbor. This was our first time being one on one with each other since the beginning of our friendship and we have literally been inseparable ever since. [See Jennifer and Jeff's full story on their site]
Was your proposal a surprise or were you expecting it? I knew that it was coming soon, however I didn’t know “when” it would actually happen. I purposed myself to not dwell on the proposal and to just focus on enjoying the courtship. I refused to be “anxious” during this time.
What are some things you've had to adjust to going from being "single-minded" to "future wife-minded?" When you are “wife-minded” you no longer think for just you. Every major decision you make, you have your fiancé in mind and you include him on it. For example, when you want to make large purchases the “single-minded” person will do it without discussing it with their mate. However, the “wife-minded” person discusses it prior to making the purchase. When you are married the assets become joined along with the expenses. This can be difficult to adjust when you have been in “independent woman” mode most of your life.
How has your commitment to abstain sexually helped your relationship with Jeff? Our friendship is VERY solid! We are able to make decisions based on the Word of God and not solely our emotions. Jeff and I do soooo many things together and we can talk about anything! There are so many other things to do other than have sex that will grow the relationship in critical areas prior to marriage! In fact, my next book will cover that!
I like that you wrote a vision of the qualities that you wanted in a husband years prior to meeting Jeff. Would you encourage that for single women? I would encourage that ladies "prayerfully" write a vision for their future mate. I say prayerfully because God who created us knows what we need for our purpose. By coming to God first prior to writing our vision for our mate we get the Holy Spirit involved. For example: I am a very strong willed, purpose driven woman. One of the things God led me to write on my vision is a strong, secure man of God that would help me to relax and have fun. Also a man whose vision I could compliment and he could compliment mine so we could work togeher. Ultimately Marriage is a ministry and before creating any ministry you write a vision for it. Its the same with marriage, its the same with your "future" mate.
One of the sentiments I hold concerning my single life is that God doesn't need my help finding my future husband. Reading your story, I see there were times where you could have tried to go ahead of God but instead you surrendered your desires to the Lord. How did that protect you in the long run when you did eventually begin your relationship? Well there were times where I tried to do things my way, and I ignored the red flags God gave me about the particular individual. In the end, I had to break soulties and heal. Its very dangerous when we dont surrender to God and wait for the right season to enter into a courtship. Once I surrendered these decisions and allowed them to be led of Holy Spirit I entered into the courtship with my one true love! My fiance, meets my expectations and does it exceeedingly and abundantly! But then again, that't the kind of God we serve!
What would you say to someone who's waiting for her future husband, but may be tempted to "throw in the towel"? How would you let her know that her waiting will be worth it? I would ask her to stand on these scriptures, and commit them to memory. At any time she feels like throwing in the towel, I would ask her to confess the word of God until she truly believes it and will not doubt! These were verses that encouraged me during my time of waiting. No matter what Believe God’s Word! Its true! Don’t settle for a counterfeit mate because you will be miserable in the long run. It’s better to be SINGLE and Happy, than to be MARRIED and wish you were SINGLE. Wait for God’s best, you DESERVE IT! Do not grow weary in well doing, you will reap a harvest if you don’t faint. (Galatians 6:9) Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalms 37:4) Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33)
Find out more about Jennifer's book,
Dried Tears: A Woman's Guide to Overcoming (here)
Photo Credit: (Engagement photos), Leonard Poteat; personal photos, Jennifer Lucy