I was helping teach a Bible study for teenage kids at a small church in Covina. The pastor’s daughter brought her along, they were friends, to a church leadership meeting at his house. It wasn’t long before her sparkling eyes caught my attention. It was August 28th, 1997.
Quickly finding out where she worked, I rearranged my routine to include daily trips to the Starbucks, where she made lattes for the pretentious Glendora crowd. Within days, we were chatting up a storm, so much that her boss would harass her to work instead of talk. As her birthday approached, I invited her to attend a concert at the Long Beach Symphony Pops. She declined. Being her birthday weekend, she was already committed to celebrate with her family. In fact, she was booked all weekend. However, on her actual birthday, she was free. I quickly secured the date, and the rest is history!
I was already attending the Long Beach Pops, because several of my friends were performing. One such friend, Steve Mirau, caught a ride home with me afterward. During the drive, I told him that I had this weird feeling that I was going to marry Deanna. I just knew.
Before Christmas that year, we were engaged. September 19th, the following year, we were wed.
The journey has been amazing, and I wouldn’t change one bit of it. Even some of the pitfalls have produced some of the most wonderful experiences for us. I can recall one instance when I hurt her, and her grace filled response broke me to tears as I saw my wife BE Jesus to me. Her forgiveness and grace was unbelievable. Outside of Christ, this would not be possible.
That goes for our entire marriage. Outside of Christ, it would not have been possible. The Lord’s gift of Deanna, to me, has been the most wonderful, life-changing gift. It approaches my own gift of salvation, in value.
Deanna, I love you.