A Newlywed’s Most Important Engagement and WW Linkup!


Exciting things are happening at the Steffaniak household! Our family is growing. No, I am most certainly not pregnant! 😉 But we truly are adding a sweet young lady to our mostly male brood! Yippee!

Our oldest son, Jordan, popped the question to Sarah, his sweetie, on Saturday, January 17th. It was a foregone conclusion months before the special day—since these two love birds are quite the proactive planners. Good for them! So we’ve been waiting with baited breath to let the whole world know!

Jordan was blessed with a full-time position as a loan processor at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, starting in January of this year. He still hasn’t quite finished his MDiv from Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, but he can finish up what’s left online. And with this new job, Sarah will be able to go to Liberty tuition free next year (her senior year) after their summer wedding. God’s blessings just keep pouring down!

It’s so exciting when a couple is just starting out, but often that excitement quickly gives way to stress, disappointment, confusion, not to mention, butting-heads with our fiancé’s.

What?! . . . No way! . . . Yes, way!

I wish I could pour all of the wisdom Gary and I have learned over the years—often the hard way—into Jordan and Sarah’s hearts and minds! But like most things, our adult-children {seems like an oxymoron, right?} will have to learn the hard way as well.

But in God’s amazing and mysterious economy, that’s a good thing!

If we didn’t have to face disagreements, money troubles and the ordinary challenges, plus unpredictable trials of life, then we wouldn’t learn to trust God. And if we didn’t learn to trust Him, we wouldn’t come to know His amazing grace and perfect peace—even and especially in the midst of the messiness of life.

If there’s one thing that I would tell Jordan and Sarah as they navigate the incredible challenge of marriage—as well as all the rest of the engaged and newly married couples out thereit would be to . . .

Look to the Lord to be your one true love, especially when your “bride or groom” is not living out their vows quite like you hoped they would. Remember God’s declaration . . .

“… As a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will your God rejoice over you.” ~Isaiah 62:5b

“‘For your Maker is your husband—the Lord Almighty is his name—the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth. ” ~Isaiah 54:5 {emphasis mine}

And don’t forget what your position in Christ is right this very minute . . .

“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.” ~Eph. 2:4-7 {emphasis mine}

[Tweet “So whenever you face troubles in this life, look to God to fill your empty and aching heart. “]


Looking to your spouse for that kind of love will leave you frustrated and discouraged. They just aren’t made to carry that heavy of a weight, but thankfully the Lord can and does!


What would be a bit of sage marriage advice you’d like to offer my son and his fiancé &/or other engaged/newlywed couples? 


Love birds2

I’m sharing some photos from our vault, as well as many from Sarah’s blog {yes, she’s a writer/blogger too and oh-so-gifted in photography among many other arts}. I know, I gush! So I’ll hush . . . and let you peruse to your picture-scanning pleasure! Ahh, young love!

Engaged1 550

Sealed the proposal with a kiss!

Sarahengaged 550family photo 2 550 cropJordan and Sarah1Jordan and Sarah4 550Jordan and SArah550Jordan and Sarah5 550


Joining with my friends at Giving Up on Perfect, Wifey Wednesday, Coffee and Conversation, Wholehearted Wednesday, and Whimsical Wednesday.

Now it’s time for Wedded Wednesday …

Check out our new WW button!

Find our other WW button code and guidelines here.

Messy Marriage

And don’t forget to include a link back here, because the easier people can find me, the more traffic I can send your way!


  1. Oh! My!

    These photos are so awesome … Gorgeous, Beth!! I am so happy for you all. We’ve found the guys our girls married have brought nothing but joy and delight to our family.

    May you find that to be true for your clan.

    Hugs for all!

    • Thanks so much, Linda! We are so excited about Sarah. I couldn’t have picked better if I’d done it myself! We look forward to entering that new world of “In-lawhood.” It seems like a very exciting and satisfying new place! 🙂

  2. Congratulations, momma! A wedding, how exciting!!

  3. Congrats my sweet friend!! What a blessing when our children choose to walk with the Lord in marriage. You must be so excited!! Thanks for the linkup too!!

  4. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser says:

    Hooray! Best wishes to all.

    My advice is this – scan and cover your sectors.

    No, it’s not just applicable to running a convoy through Insurgent Alley, and being able to quickly light up any threat…it does have a marriage application, too.

    Simply put…on the convoy, you watch your sector, and leave your teammates to cover theirs. You trust them.

    Same with marriage responsibilities. Do the things you’re supposed to do (decided buy mutual agreement), and put aside the temptation to poach on you spouse’s area of responsibility. If you’re asked for help, pitch in, but don’t take away the jobs they are to do.

    You take those away, and you erode their self-respect.

    Don’t even do “curiosity inspections”…TRUST, and keep to your own duties.

    And yes, I learned this from experience (in marriage…on the other, there’s no OJT, ’cause it gets you dead, quick).


    • You ought to write a book about marriage from a soldier’s vantage point, Andrew. There are so many rich metaphors that would enter in! And I bet it would be such a provocative title and idea that most husband’s would be snatching it up and urging their wives to read it with them! 🙂 Thanks for your kind blessings!

  5. Congratulations to you Beth and the entire family! I cannot wait to see the wedding!

    My advice would be that they always do marriage according to God’s word. If the obey His word, their marriage journey will be a lot easier.
    Proverbs 13:15 says Good understanding gives favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.

    Congratulations once more! Praise God!

    • Yes, finding God in those harsh reality moments takes soaking up God’s love letters to us. And the truths on how to live their lives and respond to each other in marriage are invaluable. Thanks so much for your kind words, my friend!

  6. Congratulations to you Beth and the entire family! I cannot wait to see the wedding!

    My advice would be that they always do marriage according to God’s word. If they obey His word, their marriage journey will be a lot easier.
    Proverbs 13:15 says Good understanding gives favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.

    Congratulations once more! Praise God!

    • Oh yes! I’ll be sharing photos of that blessed day, you can bet! It’s going to be a gorgeous location and wedding–set in an old 1800’s Amish barn with lots of rolling Virginia acreage to see all around! Thanks for your wise advice, Ugochi! It’s greatly appreciated!

  7. Congratulations to Jordan and Sarah! So beautiful! I was tickled to read “certainly not pregnant!” haha. it’s great to daughter, who blogs/writes added to the the family! Blessings to you and the fam, as you plan for the wedding!

    • I’ve always longed for a daughter–my family can attest. I don’t want to overwhelm the poor girl! She has a loving family of her own, but I do hope she’ll come to view me as a person she loves and trusts. Thanks so much for the well wishes, Ngina! I look forward to giving her your new book!

  8. This is so exciting! Congratulations! What a blessing to be adding to your family and to be able to share with them that God will always be there. Putting Him at the center of their marriage will honor Him and bless them when life gets bumpy. I can’t wait to hear more and of course I am looking forward to the day when I can announce the same thing for one of my sons. Blessings, friend!

    • That’s right, Mary! You’re a MOB too – “Mom of boys!” 😉 It truly is an exciting time, especially when your son picks out a gem like Sarah! I can’t wait for all that God will do in our intertwined lives in the years ahead. Thanks so much for your sweet words of encouragement, my friend! Hugs to you!

  9. Candy Reid says:

    Congratulations, Beth!! I know how excited you are as one my “man-children” recently proposed to his sweetheart (who also happens to be a photographer and a blogger!). We couldn’t be happier. 🙂 I’ll be sharing your article with my sweet daughter-in-heart (soon to be daughter-in-law) as I know she’ll appreciate it.
    I don’t have a marriage post to link up this week, but I just couldn’t let the opportunity to congratulate you pass me by. 🙂

    • Thanks so much for coming by and wishing us well, Candy! It’s good to know I’m not the only super excited mom with a wedding on the horizon! And I appreciate you sharing the post with your “daugher-in-heart.” What a great way to put it!

  10. What fun! Congrats!
    I would say my biggest advice is there will come a time where you are sadden and hurt by your husband. It can happen to different degrees of course. But as wives we have to remember if we believe we were brought to our husbands to be his help mate it is also our job to be forgiving and graceful even when we feel like we can not. Jesus has done it for us and we must do it for our husband. With that (seeing how that seemed a little negative) marriage is one of the best things in life- so enjoy it fully!

    • Yes, Jesus’ example of grace and forgiveness is so important to focus on, integrate into our hearts and marriages and extend to our partners, Cassie. I love that you have shared that very wise advice with them. I don’t see it as negative at all–it’s sweet when our forgiveness is fueled by the Lord! Thanks so much for adding to the discussion, my friend!

  11. Darby Dugger says:

    So fun! Congrats! She will have a great MIL! 🙂

    • Aww, thanks, Darby! I do hope so. I’ve seen the way a possessive MIL can be with how my dad’s mom was with my mom. I do so hope to steer clear of that. I’ve thankfully had a wonderful MIL, so it should be a bit easier if I follow her example. 🙂

  12. Elizabeth Spence says:

    Congratulations on a new future daughter in law!

  13. Mary Flaherty says:

    Oh, they’re adorable…you’re all adorable! My advice is something that I’ve only recently learned, from my second marriage (it took me awhile). You know you are truly loving as Christ loves when you realize that the hurt you feel from a disagreement is less than the hurt you know you’ve caused your spouse. That is when you must seize the opportunity for forgiveness-both giving and asking for it. Do not give the devil a foothold. Congratulations to Jordan and Sarah!

    • Aren’t they, Mary?! Thanks for that kind word about the rest of us too. 😉 That’s so true. Jesus transforms our perspective about our spouse and the conflict we’re facing in huge ways when we humble ourselves like He humbled Himself. What an amazing God we have! And yes, satan is probably trying his best already to “gain a foothold.” So we stand with prayers lifted up for them everyday and from here on out! They will need it!

  14. Love the pictures!! And so happy for all of you. I share your My Three Sons position in life and remembering adding our first (and unfortunately our only so far) DIL into the mix. I was elated to have another girl in the family! Love her even more almost 17 years later. Blessings to all of you! ♥

    • Thanks, Nannette! I have to say, I love the pictures too. There were many that I wanted to share but didn’t because I didn’t want this post to go too long. I can relate to the elation, my friend! It’s nice to have another female to add to the discussion around the male-dominated table. 🙂

  15. Gina Duke says:

    Congratulations! Such a sweet couple. God’s many blessings to them!!! Thanks for sharing. Loved the pics,too.

    • Thanks so much, Gina! Yes, they truly are sweet. I can’t help but smile when I look at these pictures and remember how much fun it was when I was first starting out with my, then, boyfriend, now husband.

  16. Congrats to an adorable couple! New marriages are such hope-filled, glorious gifts for us all! The pics are great and the bride will be beautiful!! And my advice…also learned the Very. Hard. Way…THINK BEFORE SPEAKING and REMEMBER YOU ARE TALKING/DOING to JESUS our LORD! All God’s blessings. So happy for you, Beth. Enjoy the precious moments leading up to the big day <3

    • Aren’t they, Sheila?! It’s like going to a wedding or seeing a couple get engaged reminds us of all of those glorious firsts–especially when the couple is seeking God as well as each other. I love your advice! I think it’s so true–we are loving Christ when we love our mates. Who wouldn’t be motivated to love Him?! Thanks for your sweet words, my friend! Stay warm up there in snowy New England!

  17. PS LOTS of good advice here on marriage. Thanks all!!

  18. JosephPote says:

    Beautiful pic’s coupled with sound advice!

    Thank you for sharing, Beth! And CONGRATULATIONS!!!

  19. Congratulations, Beth! Oh you said it perfectly above. To constantly look to the perfect One, our loving Father, friend, Savior who is with us through it all.

    • That has been what has given me the love that kept my marriage growing and “resuscitated” when it was on “life-support” years ago, Jessica. I just don’t know how couples manage to stay married these days without the Lord being their focus and source of love. Thanks for your kindness to me!

  20. Laurie Collett says:

    Congratulations to the lovely couple, thanks for hosting, & God bless!

  21. M Steinhardt says:

    I love these pictures Beth and Jordan & Sarah make a beautiful couple! They are fortunate to have you and Gary as role models AND most of all God! I think open, but loving communication is so important in a marriage. Of course no one gets it right all of the time, but persevereing and never giving up on communicating with each other and especially with our Lord, sure helps! Congrats and best wishes to all of you! So looking forward to seeing those Wedding pics!!!


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