When sean proposed, I didn’t think I was ready. You may know this story already- that Sean knew what he wanted way before I did. A year into our dating relationship, Sean agreed to stop talking about getting married because it was stressing me out. So of course, three days later, he proposed. I think I said “are you kidding me?!” And “we need to talk about this” a few times before I actually said yes. Once he put that ring on my finger, though, I never regretted saying yes, and never second guessed that decision. I was able to rest peacefully and confidently in that decision, because of a moment I had earlier that day, while praying with Sean. We were in Golden Gate Park, thanking God for our year of dating one another, when God really impressed upon me a realization. God creates beauty. It’s just what he does, and he’s so good at it. I realized that God creates beauty, and even will create beautiful things out of not so beautiful situations and people. So that day, I decided to trust God that he would create something beautiful out of my relationship with Sean, regardless of ups and downs we would have in the future.
We were married two years and nine months. There were times that were a blast, and times that we really annoyed each other. I’m thankful for all of it. Sean was a man of incredible character, though he tried to hide it behind bad puns. He was selfless, hard working, and always, always positive. The only times I have seen him angry was when he felt there was some sort of injustice happening. Sean loved me in a tangible way. I’ll admit he could never really figure out good gifts to give me, but he really tried. What I appreciate more is how he continually sought to help me grow as a person and overcome challenges.
The past eight months, we had more challenges than we anticipated. God helped us to really take it in stride, one hurdle at a time. I have to say, Sean walked through cancer with so much grace and endurance. He was in more pain than I’ll ever know, and I never heard a single complaint. Chemo, nausea, losing his hair, sleepless nights and sleeping for weeks- Sean endured it with his head up, and the sole purpose of wanting to encourage anyone willing to listen. Sean knew we could rely on God to help us through even the worst of times, that God would create beauty out of the difficult and not-so-beautiful.
Can you see it? Can you see the beauty in this room- how many of us have been encouraged and inspired by Sean’s life? See the beauty of Sean walking fearlessly into death- with the incredible hope of seeing his savior. I feel the beautiful love of friends and family, stepping out to generously care for me. I see beauty in how God was with us at every step, helping Sean and I process the spectrum of feelings we have experienced this year. There is beauty in my marriage to Sean; God provided us both the perfect partner to walk this journey together. There is no doubt this is harder than I even know at this point, and none of this should have happened, but still there is beauty. God does that.