Today marks one year of our changed lives in a new covenant of marriage.
2017 marked the change. Faylene had been a widow 6 years. I had been a widower for almost a year. Neither of us were seeking marriage. We had resolved separately and in our own ways that we would not have lives of leisure. We both wanted to be used of God for the remainder of our days. She had this assertion underscored on a mission trip to Africa. It happened to me on a trip alone to the Philippines. And, we had each resolved to move forward to see where this would lead us. She was determined, one way or another, to return to the mission field. I knew I was called to the Philippines.
God changed things. It was not passion or romance that caused it. He began to speak things to her heart. Three of her grown children had quietly and separately (without consulting each other) weighed in with their Mom a few months before. “Have you considered Roland?” She had put aside the statements — in a safe place before the Lord, who ordered her steps. I only knew to return to the Philippines for a large task of writing biblical creation curriculum and for the children and people I loved so dearly. Faylene was my good friend, and only a good friend.
In the space of one week in late April 2017, we knew we were to be married. We treated each other carefully during the short two-month engagement. We wanted no sin to mar the coming covenant.
When we were married on June 24, we wondered how all this was going to happen. God’s assurance was demonstrated over and over as we became “very married” quickly, changed homes, went to the Philippines, came home, and went back to the Philippines. Now we are in the US preparing the final sale of Virginia property to live in the Philippines most of the time and be in a “tiny house” in West Virginia with Grace, Faylene’s youngest grown child, and her husband, LaVon Wagler.
We have much work to do, and we are in love. We are humbled and thankful for the Holy Spirit’s actions in our midst. It is a day of personal celebration and thanks. We have talked and walked and loved and worshipped and prayed through the year, repeating the testimony of how two separate lives become one in a covenant intended and overseen by the One who loves each of us.
Thank you, family and friends, if you have been a part.