Love Stories Countdown to Valentine’s Day #11:
God, I am NOT okay with You answering this prayer!

Their names have been changed to protect their privacy.

This is the love story of my two dear friends in Oxford. It’s quite cute because we, as Aaron’s church community, got to see it unfold before our very eyes! Aaron is a PhD student at Pembroke. When he arrived, he quickly (as in within 3 weeks) became part of our little circle of postgraduate friends who would hang out together. But, little did we know…..

Back in South Africa there was a lovely lady who was missing him quite a lot. Roberta and Aaron went to the same church back in Cape Town, but they never met until Aaron joined Roberta’s small group. I think there was a bit of instant attraction because Roberta wanted to take up running, and Aaron is a natural runner. He offered to accompany her on runs. Roberta was pretty smitten with Aaron, and I’m fairly sure Aaron was smitten with Roberta, but both of them individually heard “Wait” from God, so they said nothing to each other.

During a weekend away for their church’s small group community they prayed over Aaron as he was about to leave for Oxford. They specifically prayed that Aaron would find a loving and warm church community in Oxford. Roberta was experiences ALL THE FEELS, knowing he was leaving, fearing that he might meet his future wife in Oxford. She had written a letter (of encouragement) for him……….6 pages long. HAHA! When he dropped her off at home, she ran in to grab the letter but asked him not to read it until he left.

Fast forward to Aaron in Dubai’s airport on the layover to England, he opened Roberta’s letter. He thought it was a confession, but it wasn’t. In fact, I think he was really impressed that 6 pages were filled with nothing but encouragements for him (with no any strings attached). Aaron says that in the airport was the first time he asked God to give him Roberta specifically.

Back in Oxford all of us (Aaron’s church community) are happily bobbing, but unbeknownst to us, Aaron is messaging his church family back in Cape Town saying how their prayers for him have been answered as he’s forming a really good group of friends. This sends Roberta into a tailspin. “GOD, I AM *NOT* OKAY WITH YOU ANSWERING THIS PRAYER!” She was seriously fretting that Aaron would meet his wife within the next week.

Roberta goes crying to her flatmate who sensibly says “Do you think that holding in your feelings for Aaron is an attempt to control the situation rather than surrender it to God? Maybe you should tell him……”

Fast forward to Roberta half-confessing, half-crying to Aaron on the phone, and Aaron giggling (he wasn’t trying to be mean) because basically he was going to confess to Roberta that he liked her a week later…she just beat him to the punch. This was in November 2017. In March(?) or maybe it was May, Aaron messages me and says “Hey, fancy a walk?” I said “Sure”, but I must have also been messaging another friend at that time because a second later I said to this friend “My friend just asked me out on a walk. I think he’s going to tell me that he’s going to propose to Roberta.”

I guessed right. By May they were engaged, by September they were married. And we all got to meet Roberta in October (or maybe it as November)! It was really lovely to meet the woman who captured our Aaron’s heart. And she fit right into the group, like a glove!

So, we are doubly blessed to have her with us these 2+ years… and here’s to many more!!!

Love, February