In Chapter 43 of Epic we shared the story of Ryan Otto – a guy who so wanted to be married, but was too afraid to even date. God worked in some pretty surprising ways to show Ryan that He had placed that desire in his heart. Ryan had fallen in love with Mary Jane.
Because he was a college pastor and M.J. was a student, he didn’t think it would be appropriate to have feelings for her. What would people think? Ryan decided to wait until she graduated to let her know how he felt. But a mutual friend told M.J. about Ryan’s feelings. Her response was not positive. In fact, she wasn’t sure she ever wanted to speak to Ryan again.
Mary Jane had an idea of the type of man she would marry and “pastor” was no part of it. So when she learned that her friend and college pastor had feelings for her, she was shocked. What would people think? She asked Ryan if they could talk over a cup of coffee. She let him know that she did not have feelings for him, but that she treasured their friendship. They committed to remaining friends.
Ryan was disappointed but he trusted God was in control. He was determined to give M.J. space. But in the coming weeks, she began sending a text here and there. He was surprised, and a little confused. And he wondered if maybe she really did have feelings for him. When they saw each other at ministry events, she seemed so happy to see him.
Mary Jane had been certain that Ryan didn’t fit the type of man she would marry. But he was a man after God’s own heart, and that was very attractive. She began to recognize that she felt excitement every time they talked. She wondered if maybe God had a different plan for her life. So she asked God for clarity.
Did she have feelings for Ryan? Was this the guy God had for her? She prayed, and then something very surprising happened. Was it God? Was it a coincidence?
Hear Ryan and M.J. Otto’s story in Chapter 44 of Epic.When God writes your love story - Ryan and M.J. Otto Part 2