The day of our engagement was surreal and extra special, because Deacon Hermon and I had not seen each other since the first day we met and here we were getting engaged six months later in front of our priests, parents, siblings, relatives and friends. It was amazing! The world as we know it would call us crazy, but what the world didn’t know is Deacon Hermon and I did not get engaged by the standard of the world. We put God first and did everything by God’s standard. We wanted to please God and not the world.
At our engagement celebration, I couldn’t believe if this was really happening. It felt like a dream, because I had waited for this day patiently and after being introduced to so many guys that were not compatible to what I was looking for, it often made me feel like this day would never come. But by God’s grace it really did come. I learned one of the best lessons in my life that day. When you put God first and you are obedient to God. He blesses and when He blesses, your cup overflows with His amazing blessing.
What a blessing it was for mine and Deacon Hermon’s paths to have crossed. God truly orchestrated the way we met. Both Deacon Hermon and I, were at a point in our lives where we had given up on marriage from all the divorces that we had seen and the way some married couples talked to each other with disrespect and no love in their heart. The year we met, Deacon Hermon was planning on going to the monastery to become a monk. I felt like I was in a tug of war, because I wanted to wait on God, but I also felt the pressure from everyone around me to get married.
One month, before I met Deacon Hermon, there was a young gentlemen I was introduced to. He was a Doctor, an Internal Medicine Doctor to be exact. He flew from the state he was from and came to meet me and wanted to get engaged right away. I personally didn’t care how much money he made or how big his house was or the fancy car he was driving. I wanted a Guy who put GOD first, not his career and definitely not worldly things. I politely told him, he was not the one for me after he told me, he goes to church only when he can and sometimes on Easter and Christmas. I’m sure many of you can understand when I tell you, the family that introduced us and everyone that knew about him thought I was crazy for saying no. They couldn’t understand why in the world I would say no to someone who was such a nice doctor. He was sweet and kind, but deep down inside I knew he was not the man God had for me.
My faith and religion, was something that I would never compromise and I would never dare give up for anyone. My number one requirement was, he had to be a man who was after God’s own heart and who was strong in our Tewahedo Orthodox faith, but he certainly didn’t have to be a deacon. I didn’t set out to find someone who was a Deacon. Deacon Hermon, being a deacon was an added bonus from God. Our amazing Heavenly Father knew the desires of my heart and He kept telling me, to wait patiently I have exactly what you need. I patiently waited and He blessed me with a Godly man that He had made just for me. Not only was he a strong Tewahedo Orthodox believer. He had Christ in his heart and he had the fear of God. He didn’t want to do anything displeasing to God. So he honored and respected me from the moment we met.
And now that we were engaged, we would be permitted to spend time together. It would allow us to get to know each other and to see if we truly wanted to get married and spend the rest of our lives together. This is what’s called the “Dating Period” in our Tewahedo Orthodox faith.
To be continued …