Interview with the Newlyweds (Daniel’s Story)

Today’s post is super special because I got to interview my friends, Daniel and Faith, about their love story. The following is Daniel’s interview, but Faith’s interview will be posted next week. I added a verse 1 Corinthians 7, which he mentioned at the end of the interview. I hope you enjoy this post!

Tell me a little bit about yourself!

I grew up in Maryland. I’m 23 years old, and I graduated from Lancaster Bible College with a bachelor’s degree in Pastoral Ministry and Biblical Studies. I’m currently earning my Master of Divinity, which will hopefully allow me to continue working in youth ministry.

How and when did you meet your wife?

Faith and I grew up together. We started attending the same church when my family moved to Maryland. She has been one of the few constants in my life. It almost feels like we’ve always known each other.

How did you start dating and how long did you date before you got engaged?

It took me until my final year of college to realize that Faith was a female that I could date. I looked at her one day, and it was different than before. And I knew that I wanted to be more than friends.

She went back to her college and I went back to mine, but we kept in contact and eventually had our first date over fall break. By the end of that weekend, we’d decided to be a couple but then returned to our respective colleges. We dated for 9 months and 10 days before we got engaged. We were engaged for 5 months and a day. We’ve been married for about 21 months.

What was the best part and the hardest part of dating?

The best part of dating Faith was that we never ran out of things to talk about. She just gets me in a way I didn’t know was possible. I love doing things with her, no matter how mundane they are, because she makes them interesting. In general, the best part of dating is when you finally find that person you want to spend the rest of your life with. It’s awesome to experience life with someone else and see their perspective on things.

However, the ugly side of dating is that in every relationship, you’re either going to marry that person or eventually break-up. A failed relationship leaves scars and can change things about you. I know that my wife is still having to deal with hurts and bad habits that I carried into our marriage from my previous relationships. Also, it was very difficult to be a long-distance couple. We did our best to remain in contact, but I wish we could’ve experienced life together more while we were dating.

When and how did you get engaged?

We got engaged on the compass of a local island on July 28, 2018. I had prepared a little speech but barely got through it. I said, “We are at a point in our lives where we can go anywhere and do anything. I want to know if you will go a direction with me?” I’d barely gotten on my knee before Faith tackled me, but she did say yes.

What was the best part and the hardest part of being engaged?

The best part of being engaged was knowing that Faith was my person and that I was going to be with her. But our engagement wasn’t fun in the slightest. We were long-distance again. We were both trying to finish our final semesters of college, and I couldn’t find a job for the longest time. I wasn’t handling our relationship or the wedding planning well, so we fought most nights. I couldn’t wait for it to be over. When we finally graduated and were back together, it was amazing to just hold her again. Despite all that had happened, I wanted to be with her and wanted her to be with me.

What were your physical/emotional/spiritual boundaries while you were dating and engaged?

We both knew that we were waiting until marriage. Two specific rules we had were that we wouldn’t remove any clothing or be in horizontal positions. Being long-distance did put strain on our boundaries. When we were with each other, there was definitely a strong desire to go farther than we should in the physical sense, and being engaged didn’t help that. But we reminded ourselves constantly why we were waiting, both for biblical and personal reasons.

Honestly, we’re not a great example for setting spiritual or emotional boundaries because we both knew early on what we wanted from the relationship. As a result, we were very open with each other from the beginning and made it a policy to be honest. We relied on each other like a married couple long before we were married, but we knew that that was where we were going.

When and how did you get married?

We got married on December 29, 2018 in a smaller church with an older-style chapel. We were married by the now-retired pastor of the church that we attended as children. We both liked the more traditional vows, so we stuck to a more traditional service. Almost everyone who was important to us was in the wedding and was involved in either the reception or the service. And Faith looked amazing. Was the day perfect? No, but it allowed us to start a greater part of our lives, and that was ultimately more important than anything else.

What is the best part and hardest part of marriage?

The best part of marriage is hard to nail down. I married my best friend, and it’s like having a sleepover all the time. We build pillow forts, stay up late, watch movies, go on trips, and just spend time together. I’ve never gotten sick of her company. I’m always with her, and we get to do life together.

The hardest part of marriage has been the learning curve. I didn’t realize how selfish I was until I got married. Suddenly, I couldn’t just schedule things whenever I wanted. I had to consult Faith on scheduling, finances, chores, and more. And I have to take care of her, too. There are consequences when I hurt her feelings, and I had to learn how to care for her in that way.

If you could give readers one piece of advice about dating and marriage, what would it be?

Marriage is a good thing. Otherwise, God wouldn’t have created it. But it won’t fix all your problems or fulfill you. It doesn’t make life easier, but it does make life harder in some ways.

Don’t be in a rush to get married. This sounds so simple, but there’s a reason that Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 7 to not seek after marriage. In singleness, you have so much freedom to serve others and spread the gospel that can never be achieved again. So don’t waste your singleness pining after marriage. Make the most of this time. Don’t focus so much on marriage that you waste the opportunities that God has given you now.

But I say to the unmarried and to the widows: it is good for them if they remain even as I am; but if they cannot exercise self-control, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion. (1 Corinthians 7:8-9 NKJV)

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