While I was at a nine week summer project called Kaleo, God opened my eyes to the fact that there are a lot of Godly women in the world. At this point in my life I had only been a Christian for about 8 months or so. I had been dating a girl for about three years and we had broken up a few months before this because she did not believe in Jesus. We remained friends though, which was really an unhealthy decision. I had hoped that she would eventually come to know Christ and outside of that I wasn’t emotionally mature enough to continue a relationship like that as friends. In my mind I had come to the conclusion that no girls would like me other than this girl. I thought that because I came from a poor family and grew up kind of lower class that no girl from a stable Godly family would like me. As I shared this with the leader of the group I was in, he really encouraged me to break off my friendship with this girl and not talk to her at all. At least for a season. After I did that, it was like God opened my eyes! I was living in a hotel with 120 Godly college students, half of which were beautiful women. God showed me that my perception was off. By the end of the summer I had made a lot of new friends. Some of them were pretty girls who were way classier than any I had been around before AND they loved Jesus. After the summer with this new realization it was like my eyes were opened up to all of the Godly women around me and it turns out some of them liked me… who knew! For some reason though, I felt a sense of urgency about the situation, like I needed to choose a mate and get married quick. There were a couple of girls who I knew were interested in me and I was interested in them. So during a prayer meeting at church, I knelt down and prayed that God would show me who I should pursue (and in my mind, who I should marry). As I knelt there with my head in the chair, trying to stay awake, I started to daydream.
I was daydreaming that I was running a race of some sort. There were a bunch of runners and the course was roped off like a marathon with a big crowd cheering everyone on. As I was running along I noticed a really pretty girl up ahead in the crowd. As I got closer we made eye contact and she started smiling at me. In my daydream I had a kind of x-ray vision to be able to see the character of her heart and it turns out that this girl had a heart of gold. She loved Jesus, was really kind, etc. So I stopped and said “how you doin?” and started talking with her. But then I remembered I was running a race, so I told her goodbye and kept running. After about half mile or so I saw another girl. We made eye contact and she smiled at me. This girl was more beautiful than the last and her heart was even more pure than the last. So again I stopped and said “how you doin?” and started talking to her. Then it hit me again… “I am running a race, I have to keep going”. So I took off again. About another mile or so later I saw another girl who was even more beautiful and had an even better heart, but I remembered I was running a race. So I smiled, and kept going. A little later in the race another runner, a girl, caught up with me and started running about the same pace as me. She was pretty, her hair was a mess from running, she was really sweaty, but still really cute. Then she started to pass me. I wasn’t having it. I wasn’t going to let this girl beat me, so I started running a little faster and got a little in front of her. Then her eyes glanced over towards me with a playful yet determined grin and she picked up her pace a bit, caught up with me and then got back in front of me. I glanced back at her with a little smile and then passed her up again. Before we knew it we both were running faster and harder than we had ever run before toward the finish line of the race we were in. At that moment in my day-dream I felt like God said to me, look next to you at this girl. When you find someone who is running the same race as you and can help you run faster and with more effort towards the finish line of THAT race, then that is someone you should think about marrying.
I snapped out of my daydream with a sigh of relief. I didn’t have to choose someone to marry right away. I could just focus on getting to know Christ better and figuring out what race I was even running. As my relationship with Christ grew, my heart began to grow more and more towards finding ways to help kids and families break out of the cycle of poverty and come to know Christ. I started spending more and more of my time focused on that finish line. Then came along Lisa Asbury. I met her with a group of friends one day and thought she was pretty, but didn’t know much else about her. About a month later I was preparing to go to Bolivia on a missions trip with my church. At one of the info meetings Lisa happened to show up (she didn’t even go to the same church). Anyways, I really got to see her heart in Bolivia and how much her heart broke for the kids living on the streets, as did mine. Over the next few years I got to know her better and quickly realized we were running the same race. She really encourages and challenges me to stay focused towards the finish line that we are both on.