Thursday, May 15, 2008

Official Explanations

Because so many people were wondering, I've decided to finally write and clarify my current situation. There has been much confusion as to whether or not I'm married, who I married, when I got married, why I got married, etc. I truly do apologize to those of you who are close to me, and who I have left in the dark concerning my life, with the excuse of being busy. As C.S. Lewis said "Be sure it is not for nothing that (God) has knit our hearts so closely to time and place - to one friend rather than another and one shire more than all the land." God has put you in my life to be my friends, family, teachers and mentors, and since He has been so gracious to allow me the privilege of having you as such, it is not my desire to spurn you and isolate you from me. I humbly apologize to any of you who have felt that I do not value you or the role you have played (and continue to play) in my life. Every person who I have ever met, even in passing, has had an impact on my development. I can only hope that you will know that you have affected me, and that your life has not gone unnoticed. Our actions mean more than we think, and the small choices we make every day make more impact in this world than we may ever realize. Humble gratitudes aside, I should get to the meat of this blog...

Last year I came to the realization that I had found the girl whom I would marry. I was deeply in love with a God-fearing woman named 박은지 (Eunji Park), and felt that I could not live without this woman in my life. Knowing that I would marry her, we began to discuss when we would get married. We decided that we would get married in the Fall of 2008, or in early 2009. However, as time went on, we really felt that we wanted to get married earlier (me in particular). The only reason we were going to wait until Fall 08 or early 09 was because of finances, but when we started seriously looking at the finances we decided that we could probably get married as early as May. So that's what we decided on. We booked the wedding hall and started ourselves on the path of planning a wedding. (On a side note, I'd like to make a small note about the difficulty in booking a wedding hall here. We booked it almost 6 months in advance, and it was the only available date anywhere near what we wanted.)

I had been looking to go home in early February and buy a ring to 'officially' propose to Eunji. However, as we got closer to the time, we began noticing some hiccups in the timing. I had applied and been accepted to a program that places English teachers in the public school system here in Korea. I had also been posted in Busan, which was important as this is where we'll be living (I've made a promise to Eunji that I would work in whatever city in Korea she wants to live in for the time that we spend in Korea before moving to the States to start studying for a Master's Degree. She's working in Busan at the Cambodian Consulate.). My new job demanded that I be in Korea during the last week of February, and I would be finishing my previous job in the middle of February. Contiguously, Eunji would be moving out of her place and looking for a new place to live from the 1st of March. This presented a housing problem for us. My work provided me with a one-room studio apartment or a housing allowance. I couldn't change from one to the other during the contract, though. There was no way that we were going to both live in an apartment the size of most people's bathrooms, and since we had to find a place for us to live in to start off our lives together, there was no way for her to find a place to live in for only 3 months. Aside from that there was also the problem of us becoming legally married. In Korea you cannot do the wedding license at the ceremony (for couples of differing nationality); it has to be done at the consulate or the embassy. Eunji works 6 days a week and I work 5. The consular is rarely at the Canadian consulate in Busan, and the Embassy is in Seoul, 3 hours away by bullet train. We weren't sure when we would be able to get legally married. All of these things working together on our minds presenting us with a problem, made us think that we wouldn't be able to get married in May after all.

Then Eunji told me that she would be able to go to Seoul on February 15th. So we decided that was going to be the day we got married. We also found a great place for us to be able to move into on February 29th. Everything worked out. We went to Seoul and were legally married on February 15th, 2008. There were no rings, no 'official' proposals, no ceremonies, just document giving, stamping, and receiving, and then we were back on the train to Busan that same night. Happenstantially (I love making up words), the first week of our marriage were spent with me living at my friend Will Copico's apartment followed by us living in different cities for the second week as I had to be in Daejeon for the orientation of my new program. Needless to say (funny that we say that right before we say something), the first two weeks of our marriage were rough. Now I've been living in the bliss (or difficulties depending on how you look at life) of being a newlywed. We have been adjusting to each other and I've been finding out just how much I put myself above other people. Who would have thought that to love your wife like Christ loved the church would be a difficult ideal to attain to? I found out soon enough.

Now my parents are here and we're anticipating our official ceremony, where we declare before everyone that we are committed to one another and are following the will of God in our lives by allowing HIm to join us together to serve Him. We have added to the stress of adjusting to our new lives together the stress of planning a wedding, trying to accent two cultures in a most sacred ceremony. We're really looking forward to seeing those of you who can make it there on May 31st to see us declare our love and commitment to each other publicly. For those of you who cannot make it, your presence will be greatly missed, and my heart will contain a certain amount of sadness and grief at the absence of those whom I cherish dearly. With every true thing in life, there must be a balance. Without sadness we would not know joy. It follows naturally then that in our time of greatest joy, our hearts will be aching for those whom we miss.


JMJ said...

Whatever the case, congratulations!

Have a wonderful married life together, as you both serve the Lord wherever He leads.


(PS, how do your parents like the Kim-Chi?)

Anonymous said...

Thanks to your blog, i was able to review how weve been planning on things haha
love you !

Angie and Jason said...

Thanks for the update! Congratulations to the Lenharts! (that's you guys, not your parents!)