Monday, February 3

A LOVE STORY: SARAH LOWE

My sweet friend, Sarah, is sharing her love story today. Sarah is one of most kind, tender hearted people I've ever met. We both cry a lot and love marshmallow popcorn a little too much. and I'm blessed to call her one of my dearest friends. You can find Sarah at Our Hope Reclaimed and here on instagram.
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Hey y'all! So excited to share on Danielle's blog here for "A Love Story"!
I have loved reading other people's stories over the last few years, so I am honored to share my own...

I am Sarah, and my man is Parker.
We celebrated 10 years of marriage last August, and still can't believe it has been so long!
(yep, I was young when we got married...I was 20 and he was 25.)
To say it's been a crazy journey might be a little bit of an understatement.
But through it all...God has been good.

I consider our journey to be one of love growing because of hard times.
And seeing that love grow, through it all, is what makes it our love story.

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backtrack to Fall of 2002...
I came home to Dallas from my sophomore year of college at Baylor one weekend in September.
I went that Saturday night to the home of my spiritual parents/mentors who were hosting a worship and prayer time.
Parker, who was also close to this couple, had come home from law school in Oklahoma that weekend too, and was at this worship night.
Afterwards, some of us were hanging around in the kitchen and we started chatting. I had heard this guy's name before from Joe and Kim (our spiritual parents). He was cute and we were def flirting a little bit. I didn't know it at the time, but he already had known who I was, because he had inquired about me before to Joe and Kim! I didn't really remember meeting him before (oops), and then it came out while we were flirting that I didnt even know he had gone to the same high school as me (double oops)! I mean, he IS 5 years older. ha!

Later that night, we exchanged emails and Instant Messenger names (umm, hello does AOL even exist anymore? we are getting old, people.)
Back at Baylor two days later, I got an email from him, we chatted online a bit, and we then exchanged numbers. (why we didn't just do that in the first place, i dont know. Trying to be cool with IM and hotmail accounts, I suppose).
We talked... all. the. time.
For hours at a time. At all hours.
The 6 hours between us (me in Waco, TX and he in Norman, OK) forced us to talk.
Sharing life, stories, dreams, passions, goals, struggles, and just our day without seeing each other in person much was hard, but it was such a great foundation for us.
And the cool thing is, it is still our favorite thing to do...just sit and talk about anything and everything.
(I love that my man is a good talker. And a good listener. God knew I needed that, ha)

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Then the whirlwind of falling in love and getting married began!
so here's our timeline...
-September: met
-October: first date at the A&M vs. Baylor football game (he drove down. oh, and he met my parents at this game/first date!)
-November: he told me he loved me and then kissed me for the first time...at an A&M game...which was SO special to me!
-late November: I drove to Dallas one night after classes to tell my parents in person that I was in love.
-December: both in Dallas for school breaks, had a very nerve-wracking dinner with our parents to tell them we wanted to get married.
* here's a cool God-story...We suggested getting married over the coming summer but my parents said no. I was in the middle of college and I needed to finish first. Well, that would've been two more years of long distance, and then another summer while Parker took the Bar Exam. So we were crushed. BUT a few weeks later, my parents came to us and told us that the coming summer would actually be better for them and they were supportive! amazing.*
-March: Parker asked my Dad for permission and his blessing to marry me.
-April 11th: Parker proposed, at an old "castle" museum he rented out that looked over a lake in Oklahoma. On a balcony filled with pink tulips and a picnic of my favorite foods...under the stars. It was a complete surprise and totally magical, I really thought it wasn't happening yet. And he secretly video-taped the whole proposal. Which I love now...but bc I had no idea it was happening, well, I just did not look very cute. ha!
-May: decided to leave Baylor and transfer to Oklahoma while Parker could finish law school there.
-August 9th: we tied the knot!
so yes, we did it all in about 11 months. and I wouldn't have it any other way...except maybe a little faster! :)

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I remember the main feeling I had that day...
I could not WAIT to walk down the aisle to him.
I really could've cared less about everything else.
I just wanted to be his wife more than anything in the world.

(below is us in happy shock, right after we walked out of the ceremony!)

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During the ceremony, and while we walked out down the aisle as a married couple,
we worshipped to the song "Blessed Be Your Name"
The chorus of this song says "You give and take away, Lord blessed be Your Name!"

We had no idea how we would have to learn for this to be our heart's cry over the coming years...
While a lot has definitely been given, a LOT has been taken away.
And we are still learning to say "Lord, BLESSED be your name!"

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(more of our story is on my own blog, but here's a little snippet...)

From the get-go, we dealt with numerous health issues, some of which were pretty scary. 
Lots of surgeries and hospitalizations, including me being in the hospital for two weeks, just two months after we got married.
Some really difficult financial times, where we literally lived on faith because we were negative in the bank account.
Several traumatic deaths, including both of our dads who died suddenly/quickly.
Some major challenges in our faith to be different than how we grew up, which caused lots of questioning of our identity in Him.
3 really tough miscarriages.
And depression, grief, anger, miscommunications, and lack of connection due to all the hard stuff.

but.

We have learned that God was for us through it all.
He really is.
And that is where our love story GREW, and where we learned what true love is and what it can endure.

While hard stuff still happens and always will, we have also been given so much...
Good health for the last several years.
Restoration of finances and trust in Him as our provider.
(And during those hard money times...we saw Him provide in crazy supernatural, cash-envelope-in-the-mail kind of ways, which was awesome in helping grow our faith)
A desire to serve each other and support each other's dreams.
A job and move to another state, where we love living.
A renewed understanding of who we are in Him and as His children.
and last but not least...
two gorgeous little girls, Abigail and Bethany.

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(above is us completing our first Triathlon together...a really cool feeling!)

There were lots of moments where we both wanted to throw in the towel.
Where Satan would lie to us and speak discouragement about our marriage and our circumstances.
Where we felt stuck.

But we didn't. We have fought through, and see the fruit of it now!
We sought help when needed, to work through things, and learned to let things go that needed to be let go.

It is a constant, daily choice to pursue love...in whatever relationship in our lives!
And so we are still learning to do that. To pursue and serve each other,
and love each other though hard stuff.
God has brought restoration and we are so thankful.

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And, it hasn't all been just hard stuff that has written our love story...
we love doing life together!

Like I said, we love to just sit and process our days, our goals, our struggles, and whatever else.
We ask each other for advice on things all the time.
We are pretty good at encouraging each other and speaking truth without hesitation, which I am grateful for.
We love to watch TV together. We have "our shows" that we like getting cozy for and watching together after the little ones are down.
We love to eat Mexican food together. And pizza. And chocolate. (hmmm.)
We both love to play loud music and just get lost in it...whether it is worship, Garth, or Mumford.
We love cheering on our Aggies and going to football games together!
We love being outside.
We dream together a lot about having a place in the mountains. Or on the beach. whatever. :)
We love to just breath in our girls and try to take these days of their youth really slowly because we know they are flying by.

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Our love story...
It has been scripted with lots of heartache, loss, and struggle.
And also with lots of restoration, growth, and love.
I never would've written it this way when I was a 20-year-old in love.
But now? I wouldn't want it to be written any other way.
And I am so thankful...because I know the One who is authoring our love story, so I know it's gonna be good.

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4 comments:

  1. so honored to share this here! it was such a blessing to me to go through and write it all out! :) love you friend.

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  2. Wow, now this is an amazing love story and a testament to God's faithfulness and love!

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  3. What a great story, I love that end line! Love Sarah, what a sweet person, inside and out!

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