I grew up in an Adventist home but didn’t really have a desire to know God until I went to university. I met a couple of students who were Baptists and they encouraged me to visit their church which I did once. And I really liked their worship service.
One of them gave me a free Bible which I took home and began to study. I decided that I wanted to join a church. There was a Baptist church, a ten minute walk from the townhouse where I lived with my mother and younger sister. I decided that I would attend it.
Many times, my mother and the rest of my family tried to persuade me to go to church with them but I declined because I always felt that the Adventist Church was too strict. They don’t wear jewelry and I like my big, dangling earrings. They’re not happy that I’m going to a Sunday church as they call it but I have to do what makes me comfortable.
I have been to an Adventist Church before and while most of the people are nice, there those who are judgmental and legalistic. They have a problem with people who aren’t vegetarians and they are not usually friendly towards people who worship on Sundays. I can’t deal with that. They are the reason why I stopped going to church.
So, one Sunday, I walked to the church. The greeters were very friendly. They handed me a bulletin and an usher showed me to my seat. I went in and sat down. It was a nice, big church. I flipped through the bulletin and I noticed that they had evening fellowship at 6pm. It was entitled, “Seek the Lord That You May Live“. I was interested in attending. And I was considering checking out their women’s fellowship which was the following Friday at 7pm. When I got home, I would visit their website to see what other programs they had.
More people were starting to file in and I heard a deep voice say, “Excuse me.” I glanced up and my heart skipped a beat. He was tall and absolutely gorgeous. Dressed in a dark grey suit which fitted him perfectly. He looked to be in his mid to late thirties. A smile revealed even white teeth. Long fingers held a bulletin in one hand and a Bible in the other. I realized that he was waiting to come into the row and to take the empty seat next to me. Apologizing profusely, I stood up since I was in the aisle seat.
After he moved past me, I sat down. “Thank you,” he said.
“You’re welcome,” I said, wondering if I sounded breathless. I couldn’t get over how gorgeous he was. Was he here alone? Was he married? I didn’t notice a wedding ring. I prayed that he was single.
“This is your first visit to our church, isn’t it?” he asked.
“Yes–yes, it is. It’s a really nice church.”
“Well, welcome.” He held out his hand. “Terah.”
I shook it, thinking how big and beautiful his hand was. “Daniella.”
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Daniella. I hope that you will be blessed by the service and that you will be encouraged to visit again.”
“Thank you. Have you been a member of this church for long?”
He nodded. “Yes. Ever since I moved to Canada which was over twenty years ago. What about you? Do you have a home church?”
“No,” I said, “but I’m looking to join a church.”
He smiled. “Well, you’ve come to the right place. Everyone here treats one another and visitors like family. You wouldn’t find a warmer group of people.”
“Yes, I felt very welcome the moment I walked in.”
The service began but as I sat there and listened to the special music or listened to the sermon, I was so conscious of him. I found myself hoping that I wouldn’t have to wait until next week Sunday to see him again. I know the week would drag and I would be going out of my mind, thinking about him and wondering what he was doing and if he was even thinking about me–“
“So, how did you find the whole worship experience?” he asked.
“I was truly blessed,” I told him.
“I’m happy to hear that. Does this mean that you will come again next week?”
“Good.” A brief pause and then, “Daniella, do you know how to skate?”
“Yes. Since I was eight.”
“I was wondering if you would like to go skating with me this evening and then for something to eat afterwards.”
My heart was pounding. He was asking me out on a date! I could hardly believe it. “Sure. What time?”
“After the evening fellowship which ends at 7. Do you live far from here?”
I shook my head. “No. It’s a ten minute walk from here to my home.”
“I’ll give you a ride,” he offered.
I thanked him and followed him to the parking lot. He drove a Mercedes-Benz. “How old are you, Drusilla, if you don’t mind me asking.”
“And I’m thirty-five. Does the age difference bother you?”
I shook my head at once. “No, not at all.”
“In case you’re wondering, I’m not married or in a relationship. My last relationship was four years ago. What about you?”
“I don’t have a boyfriend. I’ve never been in a serious relationship. I went on a double date with a friend and her boyfriend but it didn’t work out. I wasn’t into the guy although he was nice.”
We were outside of my house now. He smiled at me. “I’ll pick you up at quarter to six and we’ll go to the church and then for our date afterwards.”
“Yes,” I replied, my heart pounding. He had such beautiful eyes and his mouth…”I’ll see you later.” I opened the door and practically ran up the steps to the house. I opened the door and after closing it, I leaned against it, trying to catch my breath.
Fortunately for me, my mother and sister weren’t there. They were at my uncle’s place in Whitby and probably wouldn’t be home until after I had left which worked out perfectly for me. The last thing I needed for them to cross examine me about going to the Baptist church and my date with Terah. The rest of the morning couldn’t go fast enough. At last, six o’ clock rolled around. I quickly showered and put on a new turtleneck sweater and jeans. I pulled my hair back and wore my favorite earrings. I scribbled a note to my mother, letting her know that I had gone out and won’t be home until after nine or so. I said that I would call if I was going to be later.
Terah showed up promptly at five forty-five. He got out of the car and held the door open for me. He was dressed in a tan colored sweater, leather jacket and black jeans. The mere sight of him got my heart and pulse racing like crazy. “Hello,” he said, looking at me in a way that made my knees weak. I got into the car, catching a whiff of his cologne and off we went.
We talked about different things on the drive over. When we walked through the front door, we were greeted and I caught a few envious glances from the single women as we walked into the sanctuary. It was a great program. I was very happy that I went. However, I was really, really looking forward to our date. My heart somersaulted every time I thought about it and when we were heading to the skating rink, I was beside myself with excitement.
It was nice. There were lots of people, mostly couples and families. He and I skated side by side, holding hands. I was on cloud nine. We spent an hour there and then we went to Lick’s. Over veggie burgers, onion rings and milkshakes, we bonded.
We began dating after that. Of course, my family has a problem with me dating him because he was a Baptist. “At least he’s in church,” I retorted. “There are Adventists who are not in church. Instead of worrying about Terah and me, worry about Uncle Vincent who’s smoking and drinking socially again. He needs your prayers more than I or Terah do.”
After I said that, the objections to my relationship with Terah ended. And when we announced our engagement the following year, my family congratulated us. My mother even hugged him and welcomed him into the family. “I can see that you are a god-fearing man who truly loves the Lord and my daughter and that’s good enough for me.”
I didn’t find God in one church but I found Him in another. I now enjoy a loving relationship with Him. I thank Him everyday for His goodness and for blessing me with Terah, my wonderful and godly man. To God be the glory.
By the way, Terah, the family and I have been fasting and praying for my Uncle Vincent. He has stopped drinking. I believe that it’s only a matter of time before he quits smoking too. Praise God.