It doesn't seem possible that a year and half has passed since college graduation, but there has been so much life-change during this short time.
The next day, I went to Europe to tour seven countries in a little less than a month with three of my dearest friends from JH Ranch (Arrington, Hannah, and Emily).
Very quickly after my return, I fell in love with that handsome, godly man, Austin. Everything about our relationship has been a picture of redemption, and we just knew it was right (perhaps I'll blog about it in more detail later). We got engaged in November of 2009 on Monument Circle.
And married October 2, 2010... which happens to be the same date I accepted Christ back in 2002. photo credit: Cassidy Dawn
This is the part, where I really want to pick the story up. The Lord faithfully provided a job for Austin, so we moved into an apartment in Indianapolis after the wedding. A week after our honeymoon, Austin was laid-off. Business was bad, and he was the last one hired, so the first one to go. His initial response was relief. It wasn't until later that he thought "oh, crap!" Thankfully, once again, the Lord provided a job... a temporary job, but a job nonetheless. As he was applying for more permanent positions, lots of doors seemed to be slamming in our faces. It just wasn't making sense that he was being turned down by so many companies that he was over-qualified for.... except that the Lord, was once again, at work in directing us. We were seeing tons of things we shouldn't do, but we weren't certain what we should do.
In the mean time, I had been thinking a lot about Austin's passion for Latin America. He spent a summer in the Dominican Republic serving with a ministry called Students International. I love seeing the way his face lights up when he talks about his time there, and it's always been obvious that we would love to go back. I was hesitant to mention how much the Dominican had been on my mind because I didn't want it to seem like the backup plan. One night, as we were listening to a sermon online, I felt this overwhelming sense of peace to just bring it up to Austin. We decided to pray about going overseas for missions.
We e-mailed the leadership in the DR, and just asked them to pray for us as we were praying about going. The next step for us was seeking godly wisdom. Austin & I talked with his parents the next weekend. Both of their responses were big confirmations! His dad said, "I want to urge you two to pursue it with fire! Austin, I've known you were made for missions since you were 10. I've never told you because you needed to hear it from God on your own." His mom said, "The Lord finally told you? It's about time." My mom, also, was not surprised.
As we have continued praying about what is next, we've sensed a peace from the Holy Spirit what we are called to serve with Students International. At this point, we aren't certain about where or when we will go. The most likely candidate is Nicaragua. We have finished our application, and we'll take a short-term trip in April. Please pray with us as we continue praying about what's next for us newly-weds.