Our Story: Treasure of Love

Chapter 2
I'll Follow, I'll Wait

Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day. Psalm 25:4-5


I remember a particular late-summer day in 2004 when my father sent me to pick up a load of sawdust for our garden. While driving I was soon deep in thought. What am I going to do with my life? Will I get married? If so, to whom? How will I decide? I thought of friends who were struggling with these decisions. Some had gotten married and found themselves in a life of misery. Others didn't seem to care, yet they enjoyed dating around. But that didn't seem right. One had dumped his special friend just because her health broke.

Suddenly, the question hit me like a thunderbolt: What would you do if you were that person?

What would I do? I'd always imagined that someday the perfect person would come along: someone perfectly beautiful who would be everything I ever needed or wanted and would do everything they could for me, without hindering me in any way. Now I realized what a selfish person I was! I had wanted someone who could be everything for me without any thought of being anything for her at all! What if I did marry the perfect person and a few years down the road she wasn't perfect anymore? What would I do then?

I tried to shake the question. I'm nearly twenty-one, but I've got school ahead of me. I'm not worried—I know the right one will come along at the right time. But the questions wouldn't go away. Finally, right there on the road, I made the decision. "Lord, when You lead me to the right person, and I know that she is the right one for me, I will go forward, no matter what she is like on the outside, or what challenges may be in the path."

Peace filled my heart. This was a new way of thinking—I would follow God's leading and base my decision on His will rather than on my own feelings, likes, and dislikes. I didn't have to worry about finding the "perfect one."


Those early college years were filled with a busy schedule of classes and colporteuring. Yet I had hardly begun my first semester before I suddenly found myself in physical difficulty. I didn't know what was happening, but I began experiencing a lot of back pain which drained my energy. My muscles became tense and I soon had difficulty keeping up with the college program. Even worse, it affected my ability to colporteur, because I couldn't carry a book bag door-to-door. Visits to doctors, physical therapists, and massage therapists didn't provide any clear diagnosis or help. In spite of frustrations, setbacks, pain, and depression, God spoke comfort to my soul. I was able to accept His will, even if I were to be disabled for life.

Kind friends helped me with massage and hydrotherapy. By God's grace I regained a little health and was able to function—though at a slower pace. My teachers helped me to adjust my college load to a level that I could manage. I cooked at colporteur programs, worked as a ground leader, and led colporteur teams instead of carrying a bag and knocking on doors.

Through all these experiences, I learned to trust God, and He gave me strength and grace to make it through. In the spring of 2005, I accepted my first job working for a church in Decatur, Arkansas. They had purchased several thousand copies of The Great Controversy, and they needed someone to distribute them to every hotel room in the area! While I was there, the church invited me do a series of nature talks for their church campout. Little did I dream where that adventure would lead!

In May of 2005, I graduated with an Associate degree in Personal Ministries. What should I do now? Opportunities were not lacking—I had already turned down fifteen job offers from conferences, churches, and schools around the country. Because of health struggles, I needed some time to rest and recuperate before embarking on any career. So homeward I drove, back to Washington State, stopping just long enough in Decatur to give the nature talks.

The summer flew by, but one question was first and foremost: Where does God want me to be? What does He want me to do? At twenty-two years old, my life was dedicated to His service, yet I still didn't know where! Yes, I was still busy, using every opportunity to further His work, but I wanted to see the bigger picture. This song spoke the language of my heart, and I sang it often—I'll follow, I'll wait.

My mind holds a myriad of thoughts every day
Of what's in the future, is this the right way?
Who will I marry, and where should I go?
What's my vocation? Must I not know?

Lord I'll follow; Lord I'll wait.
Lord I trust You to lead in the time You create.
Where should I go? What should I be?
Lord I will wait always on Thee.

Oh use in my life Lord, this period of trust.
Draw me much closer, send trials if You must.
Make all my heartstrings in tune with Thine own,
So I'll be ready when Your will's shown.

Lord I'll follow; Lord I'll wait.
Lord I trust You to lead in the time You create.
Where should I go? What should I be?
Lord I will wait always on Thee.

I knew that until I was sure of my direction in life, I couldn't think about a relationship with anyone. How can I know that God is leading me to someone if I don't know what I am called to do? A relationship would only distract me. I would be tempted to start in the work he was doing and convince myself that it was God's calling. I committed to not set my affections on any young man until he informed me of his interest with my parents' permission, and I was ready. My prayers increased as the summer progressed.

During the summer I had more opportunity to correspond with friends on the Internet, and this soon became a ministry. Many friends and former classmates would call and email me asking for prayer or encouragement. Among them was Daniel, who by this time was developing a real interest in missions.


Yes, I was surprised at how quickly my interest in missions and ministry grew. I'd sent an application to Adventist Frontier Missions (AFM), a pioneering organization spreading the gospel to unreached people groups. When they responded and enthusiastically encouraged me to become a student missionary, I accepted the call to serve as a student missionary in Namibia. Naturally quiet and shy, I wasn't sure how I would survive months of fund raising and then a year among strangers in Africa. Yet God prepared the way by sending me on a two-week mission trip to Cuba. This helped me to experience missions first hand, giving me confidence to continue fund raising and training.

I sent an email to my friends, including Kristina, asking them to pray for our group in Cuba. After returning, I continued a busy schedule of classes, fund raising, and speaking appointments. About a month later, I received an email from Kristina: "Daniel, are you still alive?" Poor Kristina, she had been praying for our trip, but never heard that we had gotten back safely! I replied right away, telling her about our experiences.


By the fall of 2005, I began to see just how God was answering my prayers. In October, I received a phone call from the church in Decatur, Arkansas, asking for more nature meetings! This was quite a surprise, but made me very happy for another opportunity to share. During the meetings, many church members asked me if I did this full time. "No!" was my quick reply. "I just do this for my local church and as a special favor for Decatur."

For now we see in a mirror, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I have been known. 1 Corinthians 13:12, RV

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