I have always yearned to have a Catholic spouse; to raise kids together, to grow old together, to have fun together, and most of all, to worship together. But, I loved God so much as a young girl that I asked Him once if I should become a nun to marry Him. There was a lot of silence. I took this silence to mean that the Lord wanted me to have a Catholic husband too, just as I desired.
I once heard that marriage should be a marriage of three, with Christ at the center and that your role is to help your spouse get into Heaven, to want the greatest good for them. That’s exactly what I had felt for so many years. I wanted to learn how to sacrifice for the good of my husband.
Before I met my husband, Todd, I prayed for him. As I do now with my friends who yearn for a spouse, I would pray, “Lord, if it be your will that I be married, please bless my future husband today. Please give him peace and let him grow in faith. Prepare him to be my husband. I pray for his salvation.” I also surrendered my desire for marriage to the Lord, entrusting it to Him, so that should I be given the gift of a husband, it would only be because God willed it. Praying in this way grew my trust in the Lord. I knew He loved me and that was enough.
Now that Todd and I have celebrated our first wedding anniversary, I reflect on what a gift he is to me. The Lord clearly spoke to me about this vocation. He placed it on my heart as the thing I wanted most but, I also gave it back to Him. So, when I finally came to the Lord in complete freedom, the Lord set a path for me to Todd.
I was asked to play the role of Eve for a “sculpt” during in the Healing the Whole Person Conference. As we acted out The Fall, I was struck by how difficult it was to be torn away from Todd. The darkness and sadness in being separated from the Trinity was magnified by not having Todd at my side. Todd and I prepared well for our marriage and we prayed together faithfully, and of course still do. So as startling as it was not having him at my side during this dark time in the sculpt, I was struck even more by hearing the pain he was in as he was separated from the Trinity too. It again confirmed for me my vocation as a wife, that I should always pray for his salvation, and that I desire to do what it takes to help him be in communion with God for all eternity. This is the desire of my heart, from the time of my youth until now, and it burns more fiercely and specifically for the husband the Lord has given me. This is how I know that I’m living the vocation God has for me.
Mrs. Danielle Cooper
Works of Mercy Coordinator, St. Michael the Archangel Parish