I can’t imagine that my fiancé and I are the only couple that have had to or will struggle with this major decision.
When Jeffrey and I started going out I knew we would have to cross that bridge at some point, but I wanted to believe that it would be an easy decision to make. It has not been easy. It is true that Jeffrey and I were both raised in a Christian church, but where my church has a baby room, his has a daycare. Where mine has an orchestra, his has a worship band. His has a gym and mine has a fellowship hall.
Clearly his church has its bragging rights, but the one thing it doesn’t have is the hymns and the people who I have grown to love dearly. This is what has made the decision so hard for me. That and all the memories that I have accumulated in my small church. However, I know that this decision has been no easier for Jeffrey. I have come to terms with the fact that Jeffrey would never truly feel at home at my church. It would hurt our relationship and our worship experience for me to force him to come to church with me, just to make me happy.
Lately as I’ve thought and prayed about this situation, I kept coming back to the story of Ruth. Particularly the words that Ruth speaks to her mother-in-law Naomi, after the death of her husband. Naomi was returning to Judah and was planning to have Ruth return to her own family. However that was not what Ruth wanted, so Ruth said to Naomi;
“Entreat me not to leave you,
Or to turn back from following after you;
For wherever you go, I will go;
And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
Your people shall be my people,
And your God, my God.
Where you die, I will die,
And there will I be buried.
The Lord do so to me, and more also,
If anything but death parts you and me.” (Ruth 1: 16, 17) NKJV
It’s kind of scary how clear that passage is, but after praying about it again, I have found a sense of calmness, an inner peace. I know that no matter where life takes us, my place will always be with Jeffrey at his side. However, that does not mean I will completely cut off my ties with the Church of God. We are a family after all, we never say goodbye forever!