Thursday, 29 July 2021

our story (we just knew)

 Hello dear friends…I know I have been promising to share with you how my husband and I met, and today I decided to sit down and write our story.

Prepare yourselves for a rather long-winded tale…

 (And you’ll find some special news at the end of this post…)

 Let me begin by mentioning that I did not see this coming…I never imagined I would meet and marry the man of my dreams within a few short months…

 I had read stories about couples who just knew, but I honestly didn’t think it would be the case for me…

But, when the Lord writes your love story, one shouldn’t be surprised at how beautifully and oftentimes swiftly, everything falls into place.

 At twenty-three, I had reached a place of true contentment in my singleness, and had fully surrendered my desire to be a wife and mother to the Lord…

In September last year, shortly after my family moved to their own home in the countryside, the Lord opened doors for me to work at a small cafeteria in a little town about half an hour away.  Looking back, I don’t know what compelled me to accept the offer, considering all my dreams of being able to homestead on a much bigger scale were coming true.

 Off I went to live and work in the next town six days a week, spending Saturdays at home with my family.

 I milked cows every morning and evening, picked and preserved fresh fruit and veg, and cooked and baked up a storm, collapsing into bed at the end of each day, worn to the bone.

But I loved this new way of life and enjoyed being surrounded by Believers – young folk who truly desired to live a life edifying to God.

Not long after I arrived, a certain young man who came in on a regular basis for coffee and freshly baked bread and milk, caught my eye.

I discovered that he was the local bladesmith, almost thirty, and very much single.

I endeavoured to keep my interest hidden, (almost ignoring Rucus completely for the first while), although I did subsequently hear from my colleague, who also happens to be one of Rucus’ closest friends, that my knack for somehow finding work to do in the coffee shop part of the cafeteria just happened to coincide with the time Rucus was due to come in for supplies.

 A week or so later, the owner of the cafeteria, organised a movie night for his family (a complete set up as I later found out), and invited Rucus to join us.

After that evening, the two of us felt comfortable enough to at least exchange a greeting each day, but it was only a couple weeks later when he was again invited to join us for supper, that we had a few moments to chat before the rest of the family came in after doing chores.

Thereafter I noticed that Rucus would try and engage me in conversation more often (which wasn’t easy considering how busy I was), and I was surprised to find that we shared similar interests, and he didn’t seem to be deterred, but rather intrigued, by my interest in things such as gardening and animal husbandry.


Somewhere around this time I sensed that maybe, just maybe, he was the one I had been waiting for…

A couple weeks later, instead of going home on the Saturday, I stayed in town to photograph a sweet friend’s new baby girl. 

The photoshoot was scheduled for the late afternoon, so I decided to walk and visit another family in town that morning.  On my way, Rucus drove past me, and shortly before I reached my destination (a 3km walk from where I was living), he returned from town and stopped his car beside me to chat awhile. 

Secretly I was actually hoping that by some miracle I would pass him on the road that morning.

After talking awhile, he discovered I would be in town all day, and invited me to join him for a braai at mutual friend’s farm, provided my parents gave their permission, which happily, they did.

I was delighted to find how easy it was to converse with this man, and how comfortable I felt around him.  He made sure I was taken care of the whole afternoon. 

After the braai, we lingered in our friend’s living room and spoke the afternoon away.

I confess I was pretty distracted and shaky by the time I had to go take photographs, and couldn’t stop thinking of Rucus and wondering where this new friendship would lead…

 Throughout the next week I prayed constantly, and sought the Lord for wisdom, and on the Wednesday, I sensed the Lord asking me to pray and fully surrender my interest in Rucus to Him, asking that if he was the one for me, he would come for tea at my family’s home on the Saturday. 

I remember thinking how absurd an idea it was considering we barely knew each other.

Well, that Friday, Rucus told me he would like to pay my family visit the following day.  Only later that afternoon I realised with something of a shock, that God had answered my prayer…

 The next morning, I was on tenterhooks awaiting his arrival, and even scorched the Chelsea buns I was baking in my distraction, much to my sisters’ amusement.

Rucus ended up staying the whole day, spending the time chatting with my dad, looking around my family’s property and meeting all my siblings. 

We had some time after lunch to sit on the porch and talk.

 The next Saturday, I stayed in town again, organising to visit an old friend that afternoon, just in case Rucus planned to see me again…which he did.  He invited me to go on a walk with him in the morning.

We spent hours walking through the apple orchards which were in full bloom, talking the entire time, and stopping to sit and chat some more beneath the non-existent shade of an old dead tree and.  There are very few trees out here, apart from apple and pear trees!

 On the way home, I was pretty convinced that this man was the one I would marry, and shortly before our lovely walk came to an end, Rucus stopped and asked me if he could court me.

I didn’t even hesitate to answer yes, but said he should ask my dad for his blessing.

 Rucus wasted no time and went to speak with my dad the following day.  

Again I was on tenterhooks while at work, wondering what the outcome of their chat would be…

 That night Rucus and I texted back and forth (we had been chatting each evening via text messages for a week or so already), and I was delighted to hear that my dad had given us his blessing to begin a courtship.

Rucus mentioned that he hoped for a period of around three months for a courtship, certain that by the end of that time we would both know if we should take the next step.

 I am going to pause for a moment here to mention that the family I worked for, whom I trusted, had known Rucus for many years. 

He actually came to faith while visiting them.

I knew that, had they had concerns about his character, they would have been quick to let me know, so our relationship could progress a lot faster…


We spoke throughout that week, and Rucus came to visit me at my family’s home the Saturday.  That afternoon we attended a braai which we had both been invited to, this time as a courting couple.  All I can remember is that the two of us only had eyes for each other. 

We went for a walk afterwards and spoke about so much, including some of those tough questions…  All the while we were seeking the Lord for His guidance.

 I was on cloud nine that evening when I went back to work…I was fairly certain our courtship would end in marriage.

Little did I know how soon, though…

The next Saturday, after another long walk, talking the whole time and asking each other some difficult questions, Rucus said that he wanted to marry me…

Again, I didn’t even hesitate…I said that I would be honoured to be his wife.

Upon returning home, we sat my family down and asked for their blessing to get married.

 We simply knew that we were meant for each other.

We both experienced so much peace, and were thankful when permission was given for us to become engaged.

 Rucus made my engagement ring which he gave me the next day…a simple sterling silver ring which I wore with joy.

It was wonderful to give him a hug for the first time and be able to hold his hand.

 Our news was met with much joy by almost everyone in this little town…many people had even thought that the two of us would suit each other long before.

Everyone saw the hand of the Lord in our relationship and rejoiced that God had seen fit to send Rucus a wife (he had been waiting for many years), and that a wedding would soon take place…

 Rucus asked to set the date for April third, and I gave notice at the cafeteria, agreeing to work till the end of the busy season.

I didn’t think I would make it through the next four weeks…

I worked harder than I ever knew I could, spoke with Rucus on the phone till all hours each night, and drove home to my family every Friday evening with Rucus, so we could spend as much of the Saturday together as possible. 

By the second week of January when I packed up my belongings and left to spend three months at home before getting married, I was beyond exhausted and eager to have time to rest and have more time to spend getting to know Rucus.

 Before I bring this rather lengthy tale to a close, I would like to share with you that I only truly fell in love with Rucus a couple weeks after he put that engagement ring on my finger… 

I am thankful that we didn’t base our relationship on feelings alone (of course there was some attraction!), which fade all too quickly, and that we had no physical contact whatsoever prior to becoming engaged…

 Personally, I think that by making the commitment first, trusting the Lord to be the One guiding you both, it is much easier to allow the other person in, knowing that you are building a relationship which will last a lifetime.

 We both knew without a shadow of a doubt that the Lord was the One orchestrating each tiny detail of our relationship, and we had peace every step of the way…

I found it so natural to share my deepest feelings – things I had never spoken of with anyone - with Rucus, knowing I could trust him completely, and that he would soon be my husband.

 We actually only had our first proper “date” (we went out for coffee), a month after we got engaged.

 Our story may not be the most romantic of tales, but it is beautiful.

Each day we grow in our love for another, and praise the Lord for the way He brought us together.

 What can I say…we just knew. 

And now for the piece of news promised at the beginning of this post…we have a little one on the way!

Baby Coetzee coming January 2022.