So....

I'm feeling a little sentimental. Today is a special, extremely special day for FOUR dear people in my life. On the East Coast, Leigh Hood & Gray Ladd are getting married and here in Puyallup - Jimmy & Faythe will be united. Let's start with one couple at a time:).

While she is now so much more - I met Leigh when she was a youth & I was her youth leader. I immediately loved her spunk and recognized that if I could get her to think I was cool, the rest of the Shandon Youth Group might follow. I'm not sure if the others ever caught on - but Leigh and I became almost mildly inseparable pretty quickly. During college, I'd spend a lot of nights at her house - watching Law & Order and talking baby talk to her bed, which is quite possibly the greatest bed in America. I grew to love her family, her spunk, her heart for Jesus, and her high-strung nature that made me laugh for hours. During the most type-A years of my life, knowing someone that was more intense than me was really helpful. The thing is - Leigh does EVERYTHING intense... this wedding, her Jesus, and loving others. I've learned a LOT from her and I'm dying not to be there.

When she told me her & Gray were dating - it all made perfect sense. He had helped lead her small group when she was in high school, so to some the age difference threw them off... but I totally understood. Only Gray can meet Leigh's intensity with extreme love & sensitivity. Only she can be so passionate to express to him what an amazing guy he is. From the minute they started dating, I was so glad to know they'd definitely get married - and their union is one that I intend on learning a good deal from.

I met Faythe when Nick and I were out here interviewing for this position. Debi, Miles, and all the Musicks were anticipating her visit greatly and so I knew she was something special. We only spoke a few words that day - but a few months later when I saw her for the second time, sitting at Debi's kitchen table, God spoke to my heart and told me that she really needed to be our assistant. I was back at my house next door, on the phone with my sister, when Debi walked in and I jokingly said, "So do you think Faythe would ever move in here and be our assistant?". Debi only looked mildly surprised when she replied..."That's exactly what she just told me she wants to do".

Over the past three months, I've come to grow intensely thankful for this couple. Faythe - with her passionate heart for Jesus and people, and Jimmy - quite possibly the nicest man alive. My favorite memories with them include laughing at our girls, watching them dance together, Jimmy coming over every morning and making Faythe get dressed, Jimmy telling us that we didn't know anything about dance & he really did, Faythe explaining to me what a true 'wanker' is & the first time I called Jimmy one. Tonight at the wedding, the memories only expanded: First, they walked out of their ceremony to a DC talk song. Then, as I was dancing with Faythe at the reception - she quietly informed me that Jimmy had asked her to meet him in the restroom. I love it.

Anyhoo - I'm so thankful for these four people. The world is richer for having them, my life is better for knowing them, & the Kingdom is advance because of their obedience.