Before Forever: How Do You Know That You Know?

Before Forever: How Do You Know That You Know?

by Byron Weathersbee, Carla Weathersbee


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It was impulsive of me, I know, to go out on a limb and write what I did in that postcard after only two dates with Carla. At the time, however, something inside told me that she was the one.

But could I trust that little voice inside? If anything, I should have distrusted it, for I’d only recently broken up with my high school sweetheart. So what did that little voice and I really know?

// Can we trust that voice inside that tells us he or she is the one? //

Carla far exceeded anyone I had imagined would come my way. Spring term had just ended for us at the university we attended when she left to work at a camp for the summer. I can have a pretty one-track mind and so using a blank postcard that a friend of mine had brought back from a recent trip of his to Hawaii, I jotted a note to Carla along with the cryptic note "82884WWBTAOWD" tucked away in the bottom right-hand corner. It looked like a postal code, and no one but me knew that it stood for "We will be there after our wedding day: 8/28/84." Inside I was sure I knew what I wanted, but outside there wasn’t a chance I would let anyone know.

As much as I was drawn to a life together with Carla, I didn’t yet want her to know it!

That was pretty bold of me (or maybe psycho), considering it was three years prior to my projected Hawaiian honeymoon.1 But I was so smitten by Carla I could have penned the note with my own testosterone. Rereading that postcard today you can tell that we didn’t know each other all that well, but every encounter I’d had with Carla (all two of them!) left me more captivated by this woman.

One of those meetings was at "Rock n’ Roll," one of those crazy guy-girl college functions at a skating rink, where the small group Carla was leading and the group of guys that grabbed me decided to gather. Truth be told, I had looked forward to skating in circles about as much as being chained in front of the home decorating channel. But like most hot-blooded college males, at the time I was willing to make an exception if the prospect of picking up a great woman was involved.

As a joke, the DJ played one of those junior high "couples only" songs. It was at that point I realized Carla was the one. Not really the one to marry—just the one to ask to skate. My heart was racing as I built up courage to ask Carla. As trite and cheesy as that may sound, my hands sweat more than an evangelist at a summer tent revival when I’m nervous. So for me to ask Carla—whom I didn’t really know—to skate with me while holding my sweat-slippery hands took some big-time courage.

(Don’t laugh. All of us have personal insecurities held over from 7th grade.) I didn’t want to gross her out, but I also didn’t want to let the opportunity slip by, because in the vernacular of the early 1980’s Carla was what my friends and I called a "godly fox."

What a stupid phrase. At the time, however, that saying was "off the hook." Carla had me "crazier than a mug," another phrase with the shelf life of about a month.

And though the way we say it changes more often than a university freshman changes majors, the experience down through the centuries remains the same: I soon fully believed Carla was the one.

She was the most beautiful, most Christ-centered, most amazing woman I had ever met. Put bluntly, I was deeply infatuated with her.

Married people often tell singles in that twitter-pated state of mind I was in that spring, "You’ll know whether she’s the one."

"But how?" you naturally ask when you begin getting serious.

"Oh, you’ll just know."

"But how?!" you may think. Often, no one will give you a better answer than "You just know that you know," another stupid phrase that needs to go out with 1980’s parachute pants.

Yet in spite of all I didn’t know then, and as presumptuous as my hidden Hawaiian love note was, Carla entered my life somehow as an answer to a question my heart had been asking for years. Something clicked in me when I met her, and I knew that if she was not the girl I would marry, then my future wife would probably be someone an awful lot like her. That much I already knew.

If only "knowing that you know" were easier.

But that’s precisely the point, we think. Knowing whether she or he is the one isn’t easy for a reason. It’s difficult because the journey God is leading you on is one that will search you to the core. "Knowing that you know" isn’t as simple as browsing the Internet to match your online personality profile with some pre-selected mate.

Instead it’s a journey that will challenge your faith, deepen your trust, and refine who you are in the process.

You see, this journey isn’t only about seeking a yes or no answer to marriage. It’s about something much larger, where God’s Spirit mysteriously touches our lives and we find God wooing us through our search to "know that we know" into a relationship with Him more beautiful than the very thing you’re seeking by picking up this book.

That journey is what this book is all about.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781936417759
Publisher: Pilot Communications Group
Publication date: 08/25/2008
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 228
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Byron and Carla Weathersbee co-founded Legacy Family Ministries in 1995 to prepare pre-engaged and engaged couples for marriage. In their free time, Carla loves to jog, though Byron sees it as something you do when your life is endangered or you’re in trouble with your coach…so he watches tons of Sports Center to get his heart rate up.

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