For this man I prayed… and waited… and wrote… {Part 1}

Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of the marriage of James Russel Walker and Jennifer Lee Crawford.  On that day in 1992, our two individual lives became one, and a promise was made before God and witnesses that we would tough it out till death parts us.  Through better or worse, richer or poorer, and through sickness and health.  And in the last 20 years, every one of those challenges and choices to love through them have been faced head on.  As in all marriages, we’ve faced numerous times of both joy and sorrow, peace and difficulty… things that if we hadn’t been committed to God and to each other could/would have torn us apart.

Though I’m no  sage at this stage of life and matrimony, I wanted to share with you the one thing that I know has made a difference in our marriage.  It’s something that preceded even my meting of  James Walker.  And that thing is prayer.

From the time I was in my mother’s womb, my family prayed for me and for my spouse.  And over my growing up years, I too, learned to pray for my spouse.  By the time I was 13, God had called me to be a Minister’s wife, mother, and encourager of women through His Word.  I didn’t really know what in the world that would mean, but I began to pray for my ministry man.

I prayed and looked for him through high school, but he wasn’t there.

I prayed and looked for him through college… A Christian college where all kinds of preacher-boys attended… but he wasn’t there.

So I decided to start a journal to my future husband – in faith that one day I would find him. 😉  I wrote about significant things that were happening in my life, pretending that he was merely out of town and missed them.  (We didn’t have text or email back then… so writing letters was “normal” – grin.) I never let myself write “Dear ____”.  I wanted to save “Dear (insert name)”  for the day I knew my husband’s name.  So I prayed… and waited… and wrote…

I prayed and looked for him in the singles department of our large church… and couldn’t find him there (for a few years, at least).

So I continued to write to him.  I had purchased a beautiful leather bound journal and transferred the college-written letters into it.  Somehow having a leather “real book” made him seem more “real”.

I was getting desperate.  Friends were getting married all around me. So… like any Christian girl might do…

I finally gave up.  During my second year of teaching 2nd grade, I decided to marry Jesus, and live with Him as my husband and together, we would go on the mission field somewhere.  {What a noble plan!  However, this wasn’t God’s plan for me… but it is what I figured that I needed to do after so many years of praying and waiting and looking and writing to no avail.} I even told my boss, my school principal, that I would be leaving the next year for the mission field.  {Mind you, I was still sick – God had not yet healed me and I was barely making it some days.  Why in the world I thought I would get accepted into any mission program at that point, I just don’t know! Ugg!}  She wisely encouraged me to wait and pray, and gave me a printed copy of a quote from someone about waiting on and trusting in God.

So I gave up those plans and just kept praying… and waiting… and writing.

I prayed for my husband  every time I felt lonely.  I prayed for him when I would hear a great sermon or be convicted about something through my quiet times – I prayed that he would be convicted or taught the same thing too.  I prayed for him when I saw tragedy – prayed for his protection.  I prayed for his mind, his heart, his choices, his joys, his sorrows, what he was doing with his present time, his job, and his future.  I prayed for him each morning as I started a new day, and each night as I went to sleep.  Most of all I prayed for his walk with the Lord, and begged God to mold him into the Spiritual leader of our home.

I prayed… and waited… and wrote.

Part 2 ~ tomorrow.  🙂


About SmellingCoffee

I'm a Jesus-loving, husband-loving, family-loving minister's wife and mom to two college kids, making our home and serving our Lord in the Mississippi Delta. I study, teach, speak, and write for the greatest Boss in the universe. "Faith, Family, Food, Fun, and Living Life brewed in the fragrance of the knowledge of Jesus Christ in every place": That's what you'll find at


  1. Oh my goodness you got me in tears….
    Love your journal idea. Truly amazing.
    now i gotta go read part 2 ; )