James1.17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.
Luke turned back to that verse again. James, chapter one, had been the topic in their Bible Study group last night, and verse 17 had jumped out at him. His thoughts had gone immediately to Tess, and he’d looked over at her, wondering if she had sensed it, too. Not evidently.
Now he was prepping for their next Bible study already. They only met once a week, but God was tapping him on the shoulder. In Chapter two, it happened again: For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it. Luke knew that: he’d known Jesus as his Savior for ten years now, and had jumped into God’s Word with both feet, no turning back. Today, though, he was seeing this verse with a new perspective. He was thinking of Tess, and he was pretty sure God had brought his thoughts there. To know what to do, and not do it – that would be to dishonor God.
Luke and Tess had met as sophomores in a study group – Shakespeare, of all things. She’d helped him limp through that one, and, although from almost antithetical backgrounds, they’d found in each other kindred spirits. They shared all kinds of interests, from sports (he had a pretty good batting average and she had a mean hook shot) to coins (both their fathers had had coin collections). From friendship had come deeper feelings. Now, both in their last semesters, they had tailored their classes and activities to spend as much time together as possible. Luke had known for the past year that Tess was The One; had known with all his heart, without a doubt. He’d prayed about it often, and it was during times like right now, when he was talking with God, that he knew it the hardest.
Tess was skittish, though. Luke could understand that. She’d had a rough time of it in her home, growing up with alcoholism and divorce and death. Luke was excited at the joy and peace he saw in her as she grew in her faith. They’d talked about marriage several times, of course. At first, just skirting the perimeters, dabbling, speaking in the most general of terms. More recently, conversations had turned much more personal, and timelines had been touched upon. Tess still seemed evasive and nervous.
Luke knew God must be working in her heart, just like God was working in his. When he thought of asking Tess to marry him, his heart jumped, and he had that sharp feeling in his gut that he always got when he knew it was God. Was it time? Now?
Luke folded his hands over his Bible, and bowed his head. “Lord, I think You’re telling me that it’s time to ask Tess. You know my heart, and you know how much I want it – I think You put that desire in me. I’m praying, Lord, that You are also working in Tess, and that this is Your perfect timing. If it isn’t, if I’m reading You wrong, please let me know. I don’t want to do something really stupid. ‘Cause You know I do that.” Luke’s thoughts drifted to several times when he’d really bungled it, and he groaned. “Please, Lord, just direct me. I need you. Amen.”
The next night was their date night.
To be continued…