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I love life! I love the multifaceted things about it and about God.  I love to enjoy each day to it's fullest. I love my boys and I love change!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hope For Ruslan and Jessica Part 4

There were definitely times we connected on a fun level, but I never knew if Ruslan could tell how much I liked him now, because he was really good at completely HIDING his feelings, IF he had any for me??? We played a lot of volleyball on teams, Jeni and I hung out a lot at the pool with Ruslan and sometimes others too. Jeni and I attempted pushing him in, and found ourselves both in the pool and Ruslan with a hurt thumb or something. I pretty much always tried to be near him whether he realized or not, I didn't care, I just really liked being around him. I was always so interested to see when God was touching Ruslan or speaking something to him through different speakers who came to our school I wanted to know God's heart for him too. I was once again even more impressed with this powerful man of God. He was also an excellent speaker. We did this project where we were supposed to write about a characteristic of God, funny, loving, joyful , etc...and then share our insights with the class. We pretty much all felt shamed by our presentation compared to Ruslan's, he had a natural talent for speaking, I was so proud.

Also some really revealing shallowness on my behalf, I remember watching him play basketball for the first time and being unimpressed, and that was one of the first months of knowing him. I hadn't seen anything else yet, but I do remember wondering if I could like someone who wasn't good at sports, haha! (I hadn't seen him play soccer yet) Yes I had some vanity, big time! Thankfully God started revealing to me more of what really mattered.

Finally! It was a week before leaving for our outreach to China and all of our money had come in, which we were doubtful would happen. But miraculously both Ruslan and I received the rest of our money anonymously, and unexpectedly myself, from my Great Grandfather Poppy, whom I don't even think really supported the whole idea of what I was doing...but I knew he did love me, God is good.

I felt released to give Ruslan ANOTHER letter...DONT WORRY!, not a stomp on your heart type of letter, but a letter asking if we could at least still continue getting to know each other as friends and not lose that, which was really valuable to me. I also apologized for hurting him, and said some other stuff. I took the letter to him and asked if I could talk to him. This time I literally read it out loud to him telling him it was easier for me to read the letter so I wouldn't forget anything I wanted to say. I was really nervous and felt kinda cheesy, but I kept reading. I finished it up, and asked,

“So, do you think we could at least be friends?”

Not surprising, he basically said, “Sure.” and walked away.

I know I probably deserved that. But hey there was HOPE!.. I think.

The next week we left for China, Ruslan got stopped in Canada with visa/passport issues again, and he had to fly alone separate from the team, because he actually had to take a different airline. I was so bummed to be flying with out him, (he wouldn't arrive til late after us). I had already concocted a plan how to sit next to him on the plane, darn it!

You can see why sometimes asians would come up to me and start speaking to me wondering why I couldn't understand them! :) I guess I did kinda blend in

The next morning after we arrived in Hong Kong, I woke up and came out of my room anticipating Ruslan's arrival. As I was walking down the hallway I saw his shoes in front of the guys room, I could feel my heart flutter! “Oh, Lord, I so want this to work out?!!”

The first week there were a lot of emotions through out the whole team, people feeling culture shock, issues that weren't discussed with each other back at the base, team mates getting annoyed with each other, missing home, tired of eating peanut butter and jelly toast for every breakfast, 99% humidity and about 90 degrees, (I had NEVER experienced such sweating in my life!) yet still the excitement of being in a different country and bringing the Lord's presence. I remember crying one day in my room on the bunk bed, feeling like it was so hopeless with Ruslan seeing how he still gave so much attention to Jeni and wondering if he had deeper feelings for her. I felt like he WASN'T acting any different towards me, even after the note.

train corridor
We thankfully got to take a 30 hour train ride, I say thankfully because of what transpired. As I mentioned before no exclusive guy/girl relationships, so that also meant no alone time together. Well Ruslan was sitting at a table in the corridor of the train and there was enough space from the open bunks and train sounds that I could sit by him in the open and actually have some privacy. We ended up talking for about 6-7 hours straight! I was able to be totally honest with my whole summer process, and why the note, and where I was at now, how difficult it was to wait and trust God, and how much I was interested in him now. He also shared his side of things and that he did STILL have feelings for me, and that he had chosen to completely lay me down and had asked God to take away all feelings for me so he wouldn't be suffering throughout the school having hope for something he thought was completely dead. We shared our perspective on different incidents, I asked if he did like Jeni (I had to cover all the ground!), it was amazing! I felt like my heart came back to life! I was so excited and couldn't contain my smile from ear to ear.

Suffice to say, the next 4-6 weeks in China were pure bliss! It didn't matter that our bus broke down on our drive to the great wall, and that 8 of us had to push it, it didn't matter that Mcdonalds was like the best treat we could eat because of being so tired of chinese food, it didn't matter that one of our hotels was so bad we found toe nail clippings all over our half brown stained carpet that would become infested with cockroaches once the lights were out, it didn't matter that the guys stayed in the basement of the hotel with multiple other strange room mates,... Ruslan had feelings for ME!!! And he was starting to show them. Thankfully our hotels did get increasingly better as we traveled on. We had so much fun on this adventure together getting to know each other more knowing there was hope for our future...together. We did get talked to a couple times by the leaders, saying we were being a little too exclusive. We continued writing a couple letters back and forth through out that time as well. He even bought me a Mcdonald's ice cream one day, I had no money at that point so that was awesome! He knew the way to my heart, ice cream.

Ruslan standing by ME!!! :)
To be continued...


  1. I am enjoying reading your story :) It is fun "watching" you fall in love!

  2. Thank you Sheri! It's fun going through it all again in my writing, and knowing that I already ended up with him. It makes it a lot more of a fun story for me now. ;)

  3. Haha... ice cream is the way to your heart, eh? :) I also am enjoying reading your story.

    1. Yep yep you got it! :) Thanks for reading susan. Love you


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