“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-5
“There is no fear in love; for perfect love cast out fear.” John 4:18
Fast forward to those wonderful high school years, mine began in 1970.
Ah, the 70s! Disco, The Carpenters, Fleetwood Mac, Chicago, America, James Taylor, bell-bottom pants and jeans, jumpsuits, mini-dresses and skirts, streaking, leisure suits, pet rocks, CB radios, the Hustle, and 8-track tapes. However, for me it was meeting the boy of my dreams and falling hopelessly in love.
Mike McGinnis was someone I had known of for several years, yet when you are in 10th grade and you see a tall, blonde-haired, blue-eyed 11th grader looking at you and smiling; your heart just sort of stops and you sigh just the slightest bit. Then you start thinking about him all the time, and you are just hoping he will call you and ask you out. Then the day comes, the phone rings, and you hear his voice. “Hi Lynne, this is Mike. I am going to ride out to the mall tonight and buy the new America 8-track tape and wanted to know if you wanted to ride with me. We can grab something to eat.” Ok, Lynne, do not respond too fast, you do not want him to see how excited and eager you are to go out with him. “Sure, that sounds great, Mike.” That was the beginning of our high school romance that lasted 4 years.
We had been dating for a month or so when Mike became curious about my faith and church. His home environment was different from mine, and Mike immediately noticed and started asking questions. The conversations began about God and my faith. We would talk for hours about my faith, the Bible, and God. He even started talking to my father about his faith and wanted to know more. Soon he started coming to church with us, and then he began talking to our minister about becoming a Christian. God’s plan was right there working the whole time. I knew that if we ever got serious, my parents would question Mike not being a Christian. Yet, God worked through us and to Mike, and one Sunday morning he walked down the aisle of Eastlawn Baptist Church and made his public profession of faith. It was amazing. Soon Mike was baptized, and the change was immediate. I remember when we went to the store and bought him a bible to use for studying and his daily devotion. He was so excited. I remember the way he would reverently read it and underline with such precision each bible verse that he wanted to remember.
Our relationship took on a deeper meaning, and in 1975 Mike proposed on Christmas Eve in his parents’ living room. We were married on August 14, 1976. Not everyone was excited about us getting married because we were both still in college. There were doubts as to whether we would finish school. Those doubts though were soon wiped away. Mike and I were both determined to finish school and pay our own way. So, we both worked full time and went to school full time. It was not easy, but it was so worth the journey. God’s plan was for us to be together, and Mike and I were both set on following His plan.
College graduations meant starting to work in the real world. Another life change, and another part of God’s plan. God does not promise us that His plan will always be easy. I have found that when we have trials and challenges in front of us, we tend to strive harder and become more determined to be successful towards our goals and God’s directions. Life began to present more obstacles and challenges, however, Mike and I just looked at them as something to make life more exciting. After all, “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.” (Newt Gingrich). Mike and I had already spent about 3 years working and achieving, we could only go towards the future with the same mindset.