Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Our Walk with Purity week 3

 This week Our guest post is from Alexzandra Jaramillo!
I HEART her to pieces and I really think you all will enjoy this story!
This is her....
Isn't she beautiful?? She has a beautiful story to go right along with it :)
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Jesus has been working on my purity for a long time! It’s not short, but I promise I tried to sum it up the best I could!
January 2011: My first semester at Calvary Chapel Bible College! After two years at UNM I was so excited to give my mind FULLY to whatever God wanted to teach me. I cannot say that I am surprised that the first thing He brought under examination was the purity of my relationship. I had been engaged for 5 months, “dating” for 2 ½ years and completely enamored by Jordan for almost 4 years. The progression of our relationship was VERY slow.
Early 2006:  We met while preparing for a missions trip, he was new to our youth group and honestly I was anything but interested romantically. We ended up spending a lot of time together however, and the more I saw of his character the more interested I became.  There was such a contrast between what I saw in him and what I saw in most of the boys I knew at that time. He would gladly inconvenience himself in order to help any of us, this became especially apparent on month long missions trips when EVERYONE is exhausted.  I wasn’t sold yet. Our friendship grew but we only talked at church. It was so easy with him though, I could be completely ridiculous (to the point of serious embarrassment) but he was always amused. Anytime I had an objection to him something would happen that would completely silence it. For instance, one week I became upset that I hadn’t really heard him verbalize his faith enough and it was important that I did.  To my surprise that next Friday he shared a devotional at a youth event we had. I always tell him that what caught my attention was the Jesus I saw I him. I found myself asking God for a man like Jordan. I remember praying fervently “God please, I want to marry a man like him”. I also began asking God if he was “the one” but the only answer I could be sure of was that I needed to wait and keep my focus on God. God was asking me to let Him fill my thoughts, to let Him satisfy me during this time. He wanted the purity of my mind. We were young and I have no problem admitting that I wasn’t so good at the whole patience thing, if only I would of know how much of it God had in store for us.
April 2007: A series of events led to our acknowledgement of interest in each other but go figure the only conclusion we came to was that we were in no place to start a relationship and that we would wait and see what He would have us do. I can’t say that I expected my parent’s reaction. They were… …let’s just say protective. They played hall monitors at church and were anything but thrilled. We weren’t doing anything wrong but in order to be obedient to my parents we didn’t talk as much as we had before, sometimes only because my mother would find reasons to call me into whatever room Jordan was not in.
Summer 2008: My parents were still warming up to the idea and we were in a constant struggle of choosing to submit to their authority. We had to learn that in order to honor God we had to honor them. Jordan had felt for a while that God was calling the direction of his life towards the military. He joined the Marine Corps and left for boot camp that September. We had become really close however we remained friends who were committed to waiting for each other in order to see where it might lead. Still, Jordan leaving was hard on me. Boot camp was my first real lesson in patience. God taught me so much about Himself and the role He wanted to play in my life. He helped me to understand that as long as He is with me I am LACKING NOTHING.
December 2008: Graduation! One of my best friends was also close with Jordan, with my parents’ permission we flew to San Diego for his graduation from boot camp. Nothing crazy, we only stayed for two nights. There were so many things in my mind! He did NOT expect us there. He told me later that when we saw me in the crowd he almost couldn’t even march straight. I’m impressed, I could barely breathe. Still, no permission to peruse a relationship, no declaration of love or anything physical.
April 2009: Finally! We had my parents blessing. We ran with it! He was stationed on a base in Twenty-Nine Palms, California so the extent of our relationship was e-mails, text messaging, and phone calls. Looking back I am so grateful that we took it sooo slow. It was a really sweet time of getting to know each other and being able to practice patience together. I am so glad that my parents gave us boundaries. That summer while he was home for a holiday he told me that he loved me after I went with him to a picnic with some of his family friends. I didn’t exactly respond gracefully. I hit him in the side and did not say it back. It wasn’t because I didn’t want to. I did! But I know the kind of person he is. He is a thinker! So opposite of me! He thinks through every important decision he makes and when he said this I knew it was something that he took very seriously.  I did not want to respond out of emotion or just because of what he said. He left shorty after and I had to wait almost two months to respond the way I wanted to. I had decided to wait until I was with him again to tell him so during that time anytime we got off the phone he would tell me he loved me and I would say “okay, talk to you later”. I FELT SO BAD but he assured me he understood.
A lot happened during the next year and a half, our relationship was growing while he was in training and I was working on my AA. Looking back I know that God had us exactly where He wanted us. Being in a long-distance relationship was hard! As far as the purity of our relationship I wish I could say that it did not progress but that wouldn’t be true. We began holding hands and eventually kissing. At first I had no reservations. As long as kissing was the farthest we went we agreed it would be fine. He hadn’t had a girlfriend before me; he can honestly tell me that he has saved every bit of himself for me. It is such a gift! BUT, I never responded when the subject came up. I had struggled with the subject of purity long before Jordan was in my life. The reality of my need to be cleansed was what brought me to Jesus in the first place. I grew up knowing about HIM from stories but I learned of His importance in my life only after I had chosen to give myself over to sexual defilement at a very young age. There is a word in the Greek language that comes to mind, “Epignosis” is translated in English as experiential knowledge. My Epignosis with Jesus came out of my longing for purity. God taught me that HE IS THE SOURCE OF MY PURITY and I now knew why it was that I needed a Savior. Jesus brought my restoration, He was my righteousness now. It was a long struggle for me to tell ANYONE, I didn’t until around two years after it happened. I had certainly not discussed this with Jordan yet. My biggest fear was that he would feel that I had in some way deceived him. That was in no way my intention. I had had a friend who ended up in a sexual relationship a while before we started our relationship. I remember talking to her about how it started. She told me that it began because other boys would tell her inappropriate things and she would relay them to him just out of outrage. I didn’t want our conversations to even hint at anything sexual much less talk about sex. I asked the advice of women I trust and they confirmed my thoughts and advised me to wait on telling him and trust that God will prepare his heart.
January 2010: Our first Deployment! Well, I didn’t actually go anywhere but Jordan was in Asia for 7 months. It was another lesson in SERIOUS PATIENCE, another reminder that God has to be my EVERYTHING or else I am nothing [except pathetic]. My heart had to choose to say “blessed be the name of the Lord”. HE does not disappoint.
September 2010: He proposed!:) I was breath taken! He did it in the Sandia Mountains during sunset, it was AMAZING. I could hardly say anything!!! But with a ring on my finger I could be confident that it was out of necessity and the need for honesty that I tell him. After asking for advice and praying that God would prepare his heart I told him we needed to talk. It was HARD admitting to him that I had not waited for him. Jordan waited patiently as I stumbled over words and apologized to him. Then the sweetest thing happened, once I was done speaking he told me that he already knew and that God had helped him come to terms with it. He even shared a verse with me that God reminded him of, 2 Corinthians 5:17 says “Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, ALL THINGS have become new” then he prayed with me. I had asked Jesus to prepare his heart and HE did! Not only did He give Jordan insight HE helped his heart and used him to bless me more than I can even express. GOD IS SO FAITHFUL! Because my relationship with Jordan had no similarities to anything that I has experienced before I thought that we were in the clear. Our relationship was very good. We had Bible studies together and were involved in ministry (him in California, me in New Mexico). We weren’t going any further than kissing but there had always been a verse that I desired my life to echo and I knew deep inside that our actions were not in any way profitable.
 In 1 Corinthians 6:12 Paul says “All things are lawful for me but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful me but I will not be brought under the power of any”.
And again in 10:23 “All things are lawful for me but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me but not all things edify”.
I know that during that time there were times that we were brought under the power of our lust and our own self-gratification. I also know that it made is so much more difficult for us to be content.
Now back to January 2011: The school is located in Murrieta, California. I had planned on attending Bible College since middle school. There are actually campuses all over the world, but it was my mom who wanted me to start closER to home. It had to be God because I couldn’t of planned it better myself! I had 4 whole months living 2 hours away from my fiancĂ©! God is SOOO faithful.
 I had stepped into a “Holy Land”; everything around me was directed and focused on the Bible and will of God. Jordan however lives in the complete opposite of my new home. Marine barracks, to put it nicely; he is surrounded by godless men living for whatever gratifies their flesh. Jordan was going through a dry season in his walk with God right when I decided to clean house inside of my heart.  God had to reveal our own hearts to us in order to show us where He desires them to be. God began showing me that unless He is the reason for everything in my life there should not be room for it. Not gonna lie, I had a relationship crisis! I knew it wasn’t where it needed to be and I tried with everything in me to make it “holy”, I failed. It wasn’t until I was reminded that it is HIM who brings about our righteousness that I found peace. But with this we both knew that our physical relationship was not honoring to God. It was not edifying God or each other. I struggled with this. I did not want to give kissing up because of my pride. I believed the lie that if we stopped now we would only be ½ way pure because we had already crossed that line. I had already given my virginity away and then became restored and I did not want to admit that I was once again in need of restoration. Thank God that HE wouldn’t let my conscience rest until I submitted.  I am so glad that Jesus opened my eyes to the fact that HE desires our purity more than we do. He makes us white as snow! I am so in love with the God fearing man God has given me. Our walk with purity is nowhere near finished. Our wedding date is in 2013! I know it seems CRAZY! Alright, it is CRAZY but Jesus is using this time in our lives to teach us so much about Him and each other. He is allowing us to be perfected. It was not our idea to wait until he is out of the Marines and I am finished with school but it is OUR DESIRE TO TRUST IN THE WILL OF GOD. He has never let me down or disappointed. HIS ways are better than mine! I am so excited to learn what He has in store for us! We have a lot of self-control to exercise but it is not our own strength we are using and I am confident that HE is strong enough!
                Thanks for sharing your time with me!:) ,
                                                                                                Alexzandra

2 comments:

  1. Truly amazing and such a fantastic reminder of God's ultimate power! Thanks for sharing!

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  2. thank you for you sharing this incredible story! you and Jordan are walking in His will & His light. i am married to a Marine: married for 9 - but he's coming up on 13 years! i completely understand what you have gone through - distance-dating, barracks living for craig, deployments --- and now a 9 year marriage, children, recruiting duty and so much more - but we continue to seek God's favor & all of the blessings He has poured out on us every time we turn around. may you continue to seek His favor for your life as you await your wedding day! in Him, Aimee

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