Jimmy McNeal


May 17, 2016

My Bride

Three years ago today I had one of the most life changing experiences of my lifetime. Staci and I had an all day date that consisted of brunch, shopping, driving, early dinner, a "random" vineyard tour, me asking for her hand in marriage, a shocked yet full of excitement reply, us taking communion together, prayer, photos, my confession of how I planned it all, another drive, an unforgettable party with family and a turtle, late night conversations friends, and a really sweet time of prayer with Staci.

Today marks 3 years of an incredible journey. From wedding planning to parenting 16 months later. It has been a journey for sure. Although it hasn't been an easy 3 years, it has by far been 3 of the most blessed years of my life. As I sit here today I think of moment after moment of God shaping and molding Staci and I through both trails and triumphs. Neither of us are necessarily the same people that walked into this covenant, but we are better people because of it. I'm not giving up on her and she's not giving up on me.

Marriage has been one of the most difficult things that we have ever walked through, but God saw fit that this would be the way he wanted to sanctify us. Neither of us take our single years for granted. We look back at them and are thankful God allowed so many things to shape our views and show us more of who He is. Marriage is just a different context of that sanctification now. It's neither better or worse, but it is good. God gives good gifts to His kids, and Staci has been a constant gift to me in ways that I would never have imagined. 

I look at my wife and see my best friend, my companion, a great encourager, a consistent helper, mother to our son, the woman who makes our house a home, the woman who challenges my insecurities, points me to Jesus, prays for me often, and just loves me so well. I truly love Staci. There is no other woman in the world that I would rather be with than her. She, to me, lives out these words from Proverbs 31 with intentionality and constant conviction.

"She is far more precious than jewels. The heart of her husband  trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life." - Proverbs 31:10-12

I read these words and I'm humbled to call Staci my bride. She knows she's not perfect, but I honestly believe she is perfect for me. God perfectly chose her to be the woman who would point me back to himself often. 

Staci, I am so humbled to call you my bride. You are far better than the wife I prayed for in my teenage years. I write this to you today as a husband who is amazed by God's grace in his life. In many ways you are a constant reminder that God loves me. Not only do you show me his love through your actions, but I see his love through the blessing you are as my bride. Thank you. I love you and I'm honored to call you mine.

your second love, 



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