The Lauren and Nathaniel Story


We wish we could give everyone a fully detailed account of how we met, grew, and at last have begun preparations for life together. Maybe we will write a book… But in the interests of time, propriety, and the fact that everyone is asking us for details and we are putting off telling them, we thought we should provide a short synopsis of the Lauren and Nathaniel story!In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. And even before that time, He chose us to be in Him! We are so grateful to our Lord Jesus Christ for our many spiritual blessings, our adoption as sons, His freely bestowed grace, our redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, the revelation of His will, our inheritance, and the seal of the Holy Spirit! (Eph 1:3-13)

Nathaniel tells his story: I was born in 1984 and raised as the oldest of four in a dedicated Christian home in Kansas. I was educated by my parents at home for 19 years. Among the many wonderful lessons my family has taught me, the two most important are to love the Lord my God with all my heart, soul, mind and strength, and to love my neighbor as myself. (Mark 12:30) Our world has a very skewed viewpoint on what love is, especially between men and women, and so my family earnestly taught me what the scripture says about romance. Through understanding passages like 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8, 1 Corinthians 7, Hebrews 13:4, 2 Timothy 2:22, 1 Corinthians 6:14-20, Matthew 5:27-30, 1 Timothy 5:1-2, I committed to not only saving myself sexually for the woman I would one day marry, but also saving myself emotionally. I have endeavored to wait until the safety of a commitment was in place to fall in love with any girl.

Lauren… I was also born in 1984, about 8 ½ months after my dear Nathaniel. I was raised by loving, conservative parents in Texas with my younger brother. No one in my family was a Christian until I was ten years old. My mom was the first to come to know the Lord Jesus Christ as her Savior and shared that new faith with our family. During that year, with my parents support, I walked the aisle at church, said the “sinner’s prayer,” and was baptized. Nothing changed, however—I didn’t really love or trust God, I just knew I didn’t want to go to hell. It wasn’t until I had a concussion playing softball at the age of 13 that God “knocked some sense into me” and showed me my need of Him. I had always been successful in school and sports, but for at least a month I saw utter failure in both realms because of my head injury. That was a blow to my pride. Being helpless in those areas made me humble, and hearing that my grandfather had been praying for me made me think, “Maybe God can help.” It was at that time that I first began to pray, and after a few more difficult trials over the next few months, I surrendered my life completely to Christ as Lord, truly trusting Him by faith. God used my physical helplessness to show me my spiritual helplessness—that I was dead in my sin and in need of a Savior—or else I could never enter God’s presence. God turned the direction of my heart completely around in that next year—changing my interests and desires, my goals and my dreams. I began attending Countryside Bible Church in Southlake, Texas where I learned from God’s word and received a solid foundation in the Lord that has blessed me to this day and will continue to do so for the rest of my life. As to purity, my parents had always had the no-dating-until-you’re-16 rule, for which I am quite thankful. By the time I turned 16, however, I had read I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris, and, well, I kissed dating goodbye before ever saying “hello” to it. God has been so good to protect me and teach me from His word concerning purity and the precious gift of marriage. He has guarded my heart and my body so that I could present both complete to my husband. Praise the Lord!

Nathaniel continues: After being home-schooled through my high school years, and neither dating nor becoming in any way romantically involved with any girls (though I won’t deny that I had a few crushes through the years), I left my family home in Kansas, in August 2003, to study electrical engineering at a college in Arkansas. I was warned by a family friend not to get tangled up with any college girls, and had every intention of getting my degree and returning to Kansas to find a wife under my family’s guidance. I thought college would be easy—I could have lots of girls as friends, but there would be no danger of romantic involvement with any of them, because they would not be what I was looking for. Their very presence at college meant they were pursuing a career, rather than being a worker at home as described in Titus 2:4-5.

Lauren: I had the same idea when I went to college. I had let go of old crushes, and I’d bought into the myth that all the godly guys went to Christian schools. I was convinced that I would go to college for four years, not be interested in anyone, and then return to Texas and maybe meet someone through church…

Nathaniel: On just the first Saturday after arriving at college, however, a monkey wrench was thrown into our seemingly flawless plans. I met Lauren through some mutual friends (Tim and Jered) at a concert. After the concert, the group of us was invited to watch a movie with another group of friends. I knew a little about the movie and declined to see it.

Lauren: Yeah, and that’s what first caught my attention. You see, we hadn’t been introduced yet, hadn’t said a word to each other. I just saw him there and figured he was Jered and Tim’s weird friend (which was correct, by the way). But when some girls invited us to see a movie, and the girls turned away, after I had shared regret over seeing the movie in the past, Nathaniel chimed in, “Yeah, I saw the cover of that one and knew it wasn’t worth watching.” >Insert intrigued look on my face< I thought, wow, that’s some discernment! Then we introduced ourselves and started chatting…

Nathaniel: Instead of going to watch the movie, we all went to Tim’s and then Jered’s dorm room and hung out for the evening, having a very spiritually stimulating conversation.

Lauren: Nathaniel didn’t remember the date all of this took place, so I’ll fill you in. 🙂 It was Saturday, August 23, 2003. I ate a hamburger that night for dinner. The concert started at like 9pm. I must have finally met Nathaniel at about 10 or 10:30 that night. Nathaniel wore an off-white T-shirt and shorts. I had on a black T-shirt, jean capris, and pink flip flops. And I wore my hair in a pony tail. We talked about Veggie Tales, home schooling, worship music, Bible quizzing, cults, evangelism, computers, purity, our families…………..If you want more details from that night, you now know who to ask! 😉

Nathaniel: It didn’t take very long for us to realize that we had a lot in common. We participated in the same campus ministries, had the same friends, were looking for the same type of church, and more importantly had many of the same beliefs and convictions. As we became better friends, we spent more time together in conversation, attended the same church, and inadvertently began arriving and leaving activities and programs at approximately the same time, even if we weren’t “together”. In the flurry of romance and match-making that happens at the beginning of the college years, we received a lot of pressure from friends and observers to start dating like everyone else was. We remained firm in our convictions that this was not the appropriate time for a “relationship.”

Lauren: I was pretty much on the same page as far as not starting a relationship, but the difficult thing for me was answering an all-important question: If I’m not dating, how do I go from “just friends” to engaged???? I still figured there had to be some interim period, courting or whatnot, but after thinking and praying about it, I began to question if that was really the answer. I didn’t see courting in the Bible. I’d eventually come to the conclusion that perhaps there would be a “talking” period, in which the possibility of marriage was seriously discussed without playing with each other’s emotions. Then, if the decision was for marriage, the engagement would start and romance could finally go into action—and such engagement would last no longer than a year. LOL, some plan! I probably wouldn’t have minded if the “talking” had gotten started any time after October 2003!!! Yeah, so that would have been fast…but God had other plans, as Nathaniel intended to finish school before ever getting married. So we remained friends, not pursuing a relationship and seeking to wait on the Lord and stay guarded emotionally. That was hard at times, but the Lord was good to guard us Himself.

Nathaniel: He sure was. On only one occasion in four years was the specific application of our principles even spoken of to each other. Our first semester, some mutual friends were doing door-to-door evangelism in town, and Lauren asked me if I was interested in participating. I replied that I thought it was a good idea, but that she and I should not go together, since so many people were trying to pair us up, and that type of a relationship was not what we were looking for right then. Lauren agreed.

Well before this time, quite a quandary had developed. While we were committed to not being in a “relationship,” we had become very interested in each other, and were spending disproportionate amounts of time with each other (usually in a group or talking over instant messenger). But we never talked about “us.” During our freshman year, we became very close friends, probably too close, and made some decisions that were not the best. Most notably, in October 2003, we teamed up to sing a duet together at one of the campus ministries’ coffee house programs. Lauren had wanted to sing one of her favorite songs, “Be Unto Your Name.” She asked around, but it so happened that I was the only one who actually knew the song and how to play it on guitar, so I agreed to do a duet with Lauren. For two people who were trying to avoid being paired up, this was awfully suspicious. Especially in light of our color coordinated blue and black outfits…

Lauren: Yeah, that pretty much made it easier for others to suggest things…

Nathaniel: By our sophomore year, I realized that I had inadvertently drawn Lauren’s heart, and inappropriately awakened love before its time. (Song of Solomon 3:5) With a lot of prayer, I spent the next three years trying to undo what I had done in one year. The Lord graciously provided Lauren with some godly girlfriends, and lessened her dependence on my friendship.

Lauren: Though it was still hard!

Nathaniel: We were able to back away somewhat, and be a lot more careful with our friendship. Yet through those three years, we continued to get a lot of teasing and pressure from our friends, although most of it was a carry-over from what had happened freshman year.

In the mean time, our families had met in February of our freshman year. My sister Abigail became fast friends with Lauren. Over the next 3 years, Lauren made numerous trips to Kansas to see Abigail, whether I was there or not! Our families also took a couple trips to visit each other. In December of 2004, in the middle of our sophomore year, unknown to either of us, our parents began discussing the possibility of us being married. A very significant outcome of these conversations was our parents and families continued to support us in our determination to follow the Lord and focus on our schooling undistracted by a romantic relationship.

Lauren: I didn’t even know that until we started writing this story!!!

Nathaniel: During the summer after my junior year, 2006, I began discussing with my dad the possibility of marrying Lauren. Proverbs 24:27 says “Prepare your work outside, And make it ready for yourself in the field; Afterwards, then, build your house.” It was largely this verse that had prevented me from starting a romantic relationship (building my house) while still in college (preparing my field). However, by my final year, my field was nearly prepared, though not really producing anything yet. My dad recommended that we do some Bible study together on the subject of marriage. I agreed, but circumstance prevented us from starting the study until Christmas break of 2006-2007. Over Christmas break, at the recommendation of my dad, I broached the subject to the rest of my family, one at a time. During my final semester, my dad and I searched the scriptures for direction in acquiring a wife in a godly and God glorifying way.

These Bible studies were an exercise in patience for me—having studied these things off and on for 10 years, I didn’t feel like I was learning anything new! But I resolved to trust my heavenly Father to work through my earthly father, and bring everything about in the right time.

Lauren: Meanwhile, God was working on me…The waiting and wondering process was truly a time of refining for me. I had some rough edges and some trust issues that God wanted to smooth out and get straight. A few girlfriends (including Jacinda and Abigail) really helped me during this time, as this last semester was extremely challenging—having to let go of any dream of marrying Nathaniel, and then having to pursue a career (a pursuit in which I felt rather directionless). I wrestled hard with trusting the Lord’s provision and timing. I finally gave it all over to Him, though I still hurt and wondered. Doing what is right doesn’t always feel good. I really had to let go. And I didn’t like it. I wanted to hold on to my dreams. I’d made a decision to trust the Lord for the present and the future—I knew He was good regardless of what He had for me. But it still hurt to let go. In fact, I cried over letting go of Nathaniel, having to say good-bye to him when we graduated, still not knowing what I would be doing in the next few months as I hadn’t accepted a job yet…and that cry came only 2 or 3 days before he proposed…

Nathaniel: The Lord DID bring everything in the right time. On April 23rd, my dad and I ended our Bible study with the weekly “What shall we cover next time?” There was no real answer and nothing left to cover. On April 29th as we began the study again, I asked “What do we have this time?” My dad answered, “I don’t know, what do you think we should cover?” I thought it was time for some practical application! My father gave his blessing and we planned the next steps.

Lauren: God’s timing truly was perfect. Working through Nathaniel’s dad and his sister Abigail, the Lord kept Nathaniel from proposing when he had originally planned, much earlier in the semester. But by waiting until the weekend before finals week, that allowed the Lord to complete the work He was doing in me in that season of singleness in my life! He had taught me to trust Him even when it didn’t look like things would turn out the way I wanted, even when it didn’t FEEL GOOD to trust! He made me cling to Him! And so I could praise Him all the more when He sent Nathaniel to me at the proper time! 🙂

Nathaniel: Lauren’s father, Mike, was in Boston on a short term job assignment, so my original intention of making a personal visit to speak to him was eliminated. So on Tuesday, May 1st, a very nervous Nathaniel called Mike and asked to marry Lauren, if Mike would give his blessing and Lauren her consent. The blessing was given, along with many other wonderful tidbits of fatherly wisdom, which helped to calm my frazzled nerves.

That week, I began the very new and exciting task of arranging a proposal for Lauren. It was very strange for me who had been militantly single to purchase an engagement ring and make a reservation for a dinner engagement, or rather an engagement dinner, at a local restaurant. It was very strange to even say the word “engagement!” But the big challenge was to get Lauren into a private setting, where a proposal could be made. Since we had avoided being alone together, and had never gone out on a date, this required a lot of cunning indeed. Lauren’s dad proved invaluable: he directed her to go alone Saturday night, May 5th, to a local restaurant to sample some of the food and make a reservation for a graduation lunch the following weekend. When she asked for the manager, the manager led her to a table in the back corner of the back room, where I happened to be sitting. The manager immediately left, and Lauren sat down with a stunned “Hi!” At this point, there was no room for small talk, so I started in cold turkey.

“Lauren,
You have been one of my best friends for nearly four years now. As the word says, ‘A friend loves at all times’ and also ‘There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.’
You have been an exceptional and encouraging example of Christ at work. There is none like you. ‘My dove, my perfect one is unique!’
The word also teaches that an excellent wife is a gift from the Lord and ‘He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord.’
So, Lauren Virginia, will you marry me?”

Lauren: I said “Yes!” three times, but Nathaniel only heard the last one! After that we sat at the table and giggled for a long time. It took us about 10 minutes to even be capable of reading our menus. We ordered food, but neither of us could eat.

Nathaniel: As Lauren had described above, for years I had also wondered about a transition period in between “friendship” and “engaged.” Should there be a time for frank discussion before a commitment is made? I felt like after 4 years of friendship with Lauren, I knew her pretty well. Sure there were plenty of things I didn’t know about her, but I was confident that there was nothing more I needed to know about her to make this proposal. My concern, however, was whether or not she knew enough about me, to make a wise decision. A lot of what goes on in typical dating relationships is trying to make yourself look as good as possible to the other person—basically lying! The last thing I wanted to do was convince Lauren that I was perfect. I didn’t want to ask her to marry me, based solely on what she knew from our friendship. With this in mind, I wrote her a detailed letter describing my personal struggles, failures, and negative personality traits. I gave her this letter after the initial proposal. It was excruciatingly painful to watch her read and learn more about me than any other person knew. She could crush me right there, turn her back and leave. But at least I was being honest. When she finished, she looked up, thanked me, and informed me with strong conviction that her answer was the same. She would marry me! At this point, I gave her the ring.

Lauren: After our first ever conversation on the status of our relationship, we left the restaurant and called our parents and grandparents to tell them the good news! Then we went to the home of our Sunday school teacher and told them.

Nathaniel: The following morning we made our big splash with our friends. It was a Sunday morning, and our Sunday school teacher was out of town, but had asked me to lead the lesson. I had agreed, but in all the engagement activity, I had neglected to prepare anything from the word at all! So I taught from a passage I had spent a significant amount of time studying: 1 Thessalonians 4, on biblical principles in romance and finding a spouse. It was kind of an odd discussion, but people eventually got into it, and we had a good time. Towards the end of the class period, I brought up the subject of practical application. “So let’s say I want to marry, oh, say, Lauren, how should I go about it?” The room went dead. Most people looked away, Jacinda prepared to strangle me, and some just stared incredulously. The taboo subject had been raised! And not by just anyone, but by Nathaniel himself! And not just with a few close friends, but in public in Lauren’s presence! Lauren graciously broke the awkwardness: “I think you did a pretty good job of it last night!” and flashed the ring! Then the tension broke and screams, shouts, congratulations, and high-fives were exchanged. “Nathaniel and Lauren are finally engaged!”

Lauren: On Wednesday, May 9th, 2007 our engagement was formalized with a brief public betrothal. A betrothal is a vow to marry, and to protect ourselves for marriage. While it has no legal recognition, it is binding, unlike an American engagement, and can only be broken by divorce.
The most fascinating thing about betrothal, and about our relationship, is the clear parallels to Christ and His bride, the Church. A betrothal was sealed with a glass of wine, just like Christ passed at the last supper. The groom left saying something like “I go to prepare a place for you, that where I am, there you may be also!” (John 14:2-3) These parallels are amazing, and worth studying. We intend to develop them even further in our wedding!
Following are our betrothal vows.

Nathaniel:

“Lauren Virginia:
Before God and these friends, I, Nathaniel Paul Scott, pledge, promise, and vow to love you and to give myself up for you. When God allows, I will take you as my wife, and no other. I betroth you to me for the duration of this life; Yes, I betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, In lovingkindness and in compassion, And I betroth you to me in faithfulness. Nothing but death or the return of our Lord Jesus Christ will release me from this vow.
By a truth, I promise to marry you, and remain faithful to you as long as we live. I promise to protect you and your purity by having no physical contact with you until the day that we are married. I will never be alone with you out of sight of others, in order to protect your blameless reputation until the day we are joined as one flesh in holy marriage.
I also promise to never love you more than I love my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I promise to never ask, require, or in anyway coerce you to love me more than your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
If you will take this cup, in full and unhesitating consent to marry me, and accept my vows, I will go to prepare a place for you, I will come again, I will receive you to myself, that where I am, there you may be also.
I love you Lauren, and will continue to learn to love you, and to love our Savior more as we seek to reflect the relationship between Christ and His Bride.”

Lauren:

“Nathaniel Paul, I make a promise to you today, before our friends and before the Lord, that when the time comes I will marry you and be your wife. I will use the next few months to prepare to love, serve, support, and honor you as my husband, understanding that nothing but death or the Lord’s return can release me from this vow I am making to you today.
I can tell you that I love you, and I promise to love you always. I will go through this life with you as the Lord leads.
As you go to prepare a place for us, I promise to wait patiently, trusting the Lord and guarding my heart, mind, and body for you and you alone. I promise to maintain absolute physical purity during this time by refraining even to touch you, and I promise to protect you and to be above reproach by not spending time alone with you out of the sight of others. I will seek accountability from close friends and family.
I look forward both to learning to love you more and learning to love our Lord more as we seek to reflect Christ and His church in our betrothal and marriage.
I love you, Nathaniel, yes, I will marry you.”

In conclusion, God took us down some paths that are very different from the ones that most people choose. They were very difficult too—staying friends for 4 years with the person that you anticipate marrying some day, even in the face of pressure from many other friends, was NOT easy. Watching our friends in blissful romance relationships often made us lonely and wishful that our day would come soon. But now that our day has come, we are extremely grateful to the Lord for keeping us just friends through that time. We were enabled to focus on serving Him, keeping up with schoolwork, and maintaining our purity for our future spouses. It wasn’t easy, but it was right.

Nathaniel and Lauren wrote this account during their engagement and then were married on September 15, 2007.

12 Comments

  1. kaysie said,

    AWWW! That was just precious! (and very encouraging for someone like myself.)
    Thank you for sharing your story. 🙂

    God bless you both.

  2. Katy said,

    Wow! That is so inspiring and very encouraging 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing your story!
    Blessings!

  3. princessesindisguise said,

    Praise the Lord! What a beautiful story!

  4. nobody416 said,

    SOOOOOOOO GOOD!!!!!!!!! Wow… that is great. *sigh* I don’t even know what to say. Well happy first anniversary a week or so early!

  5. Bethany said,

    What a beautiful story! Oh, and congratulations on your upcoming anniversary. 🙂

  6. Thanksgiving | The Ort Family said,

    […] whole group – (L-R) Ana Marie, the Do'Ouro family, Georg and Martha, Nathaniel and Lauren Scott, Paul Stefan, […]

  7. Anna said,

    So encouraging! What is the song called that is played in the video at the very end? It’s so beautiful!

  8. Pearls and Diamonds said,

    Hi Anna, the song is called “Love Never Fails” and it’s actually put out by a home church in Canada–they have many praise songs like that available for free download on their website: http://www.christourlife.ca

  9. Esther said,

    What a precious story! It was so encouraging to read how you both wanted to not get emotionally involved with each other’s hearts. I know that there are still people who have the same mind view, but they seem so few and far between. Keep up the encouragement, I know I need it….

  10. tina said,

    What an amazing story! Congratulations on your 2-year anniversary 🙂

  11. And Who Are You? « Pearls and Diamonds said,

    […] two most popular posts ever are the pages “The Lauren and Nathaniel Story” and “About Lauren and […]

  12. Alyssa said,

    Thank you for posting your story! I have been convicted about dating and since been searching for the ‘in-between’ and it was so helpful and encouraging to hear your story. Thank you!

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