Today is a Red-Letter Day - It's our Anniversary - 5 wonderful years!
This is a passion flower. They grow in our front yard. I show it here to remind us of the passion the Lord has for us . . . even to the desires of our hearts. Even though His passion for us is greater, the passion for our marriage is great. We love each other passionately and with that same passion we protect our marriage and family.
Rob told his pastor the first time he saw me: "Ooh, Pastor! Look at her. I like her!" To which his pastor replied, "Forget it Robert, she's way out of your league!" I saw him and read the incredible story of his accident and survival (I will be happy to send anyone who wants it a copy). Rob had been single a long time and wanted to settle down. He talked to me and I talked back, but I just thought of him as a nice man. I was widowed a year or two then and didn't want another man in my life.
The next year at campmeeting Rob and I talked a lot, but his interest in me went right over my head. I could only think of serving the Lord in ministry. My friend Arlene told me, "Penny, he likes you!" I told her she was crazy. How could a man like that even look a woman like me. I acknowledged that he was good looking, but beyond that I couldn't see it.
I will try not to make this a book, I promise, but it IS my anniversary, so be patient. In winter, I was scheduled to attend a servant's retreat. I spent all the money I had to repair my ministry helper's van. I called the pastor and told him I wouldn't be there because of money problems. I was sorely disappointed, because it had been a particularly rough 5 months - that's another story. A couple of days later, I was having a meeting with leaders from YWAM and the phone rang. "Penny, can you make it to Ventura? We will cover the cost of the retreat" I said yes, I could. I hung up and began to cry right in from of my guests. While I was getting the good news, Rob's pastor was convincing him to come to the retreat. I still believe their wives put them up to it. The rest is history. God changed my heart. Look who He gave to me. We were brought together by the Lord's own leading. We have been knit together by His love for us. Rob wanted a woman with a family. He surely got one! There were just 13 kids in the ministry when we married. He had a quick lesson in parenting. He is my best friend.
He has had to learn about and put up with my chronic illness. He hardly complains as he comes to my side to serve and support me. How I love him! If the tables were turned, I wonder if I could match is willingness?
This anniversary is a milestone for us. There were many who believed we wouldn't make it through the first year. Well, the first year was pretty stressful as we mixed Wasp with Chicano and also with Mexican culture. Just about our first anniversary, the Lord changed our hearts again and from the ashes of our past, a firestorm if you will, came a wonderful marriage.
I Love You, Rob!!!