Me and my dad go on bike rides twice a week. There is a trail that begins right next to our house, that runs alongside Alameda Creek. It's awesome time to hang with my dad, and we have fun talking together as we ride alongside each other. We've done it quite a few times - so many times, that I know how many miles we've gone by specific landmarks on the trail. 3 miles is Quarry Lakes, 5.5 miles is my buddy Matt's house, and 9 miles is the glorious halfway marker. At mile 5, there is a little picnic area right next to the trail. It's nestled behind a housing development, and there's a little parking lot next to the picnic tables, outhouse, and water fountain. On our way back home on our ride today, me and my dad stopped for some water. The headwind was really strong as we headed out towards the bay, so we needed some refreshment. As we rode into the picnic area, I noticed only two cars in the parking lot, parked next to each other.
I'm not going to specifically describe the two cars, but as I went to get my water I noticed that there was no one sitting in the one car, but there were two people in the other. They were kissing. My hope and prayer is that they just wanted to be romantic, but coming in two separate cars to a secluded park in the late afternoon makes it difficult to think that their intentions were pure. This broke my heart.
I was listening to a Tony Campolo talk that brought me to tears a few days ago, while he was telling a story about a kid named Teddy Pollard and a teacher named Ms. Thompson (Listen here.) Teddy was in elementary school, a "problem child" who has dealt with the death of his mother and an absent father, and the way that his teacher, Ms. Thompson, chose to invest in him and love him and the way in which Teddy's life is changed. The part that really got me was this, from a letter from Teddy to Ms. Thompson:
"...I'm going to be married in July - The 27th, to be exact. I want you to come, and I want you to sit where my mother would've sat. You're the only family I have now - daddy died last year."
Marriage is such an amazing thing - the mysterious union in which what GOD binds together no man can rend asunder - that when Godly people get married, it warms my heart. It pales in comparison to the great union that exists between GOD and his children by the righteousness of Christ, but to see such a gorgeous proclamation of commitment, LOVE, fidelity, devotion, and sacrifice. Not just in the marriage bond, but in relationships between brothers and sisters in Christ, and how mightily love flows between those who have been changed by the love of GOD. But when I see infidelity, sexual or not, it flies in the face of this glorious tapestry that Godly relationships can be, and it hurts. But I know that it's GOD's desire for his children to be pure, to be commited, to be holy. My hope is that one day, GOD willing, I can stand at the altar, before my GOD, my family, and my friends, and stand tall - free from shame, guilt, and fear. It's amazing how freeing fidelity is. Amen.
"It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you. For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life." (1 Thessalonians 4:3-8)
We'll be standing face to face, everybody in the place
Says "I know they'll be happy"
And as we walk back up the aisle
I will turn to you and smile Cause I know we'll be happy
And I will look to you and you will look to me
A million thoughts race through my head But my smile is all you see
And I will stand beside you, I'll hold your hand and say "You were worth the wait"
Though I often stopped to ask God why
I always knew that He was right
When He told me to wait for you
When I was weak and couldn't see the way
I'd look ahead and see your face
And God would always bring me through
I had so many chances to throw it all away
But I knew if I stayed strong I'd meet you someday
I'd kneel and pray and I'd ask God to keep you safe
Because I knew you were worth the wait
It seemed so very hard sometimes, but you were always on my mind
I couldn't bear to hurt you
So grab my hand and hold on tight, we'll run together through the night
Just you and I
We'll be walking side by side, I'll be yours and you'll be mine
And I know we'll be happy
I made the choice to wait for you, you made the same decision too
And I know we'll be happy
We had so many chances to throw it all away
But we both stayed strong and God brought our lives together that one day
Now I kneel and pray and I thank God that you are safe
You were worth the wait (Worth The Wait, Philmore)