my Best Friend

In Uncategorized by Chad40 Comments

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills,
from whence cometh my help. My help cometh
from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”

Psalm 121:1-2
God has blessed me with many
faithful friends in my life; friends that have inspired me and challenged me to
be a better man, a stronger Christian, and a faithful servant. I have friends
that have corrected me because they genuinely care for me and friends that give
me wise counsel when making hard decisions. I have friends that are always
looking out for me and are willing to lend a helping hand in time of need. I
have friends that make sacrifices on my behalf, just because they wanted what
was best for me. These friends will always be my friends. God has used them to
make me what I am today. These friends have challenged me to be all that I can
be! I am so very grateful for every person that God has brought across my path.
But I am especially grateful for one
friend that has become more than just a friend to me! This friend has not only
been faithful, genuine, wise in counsel, sacrificial, motivating me to do my
best, but SHE is so much more to me!!
She is truly the greatest blessing in my life! I am so honored, privileged, and
grateful to be courting Miss Erin Bates, my forever friend. 
For the LORD God is a
sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that
walk uprightly.
Psalm 84:11
I met Erin
at a banquet two years ago. During the past two years, I have gotten to know
her family, friends, and more about her; I knew in my heart that this was the
Girl that I desired to pursue for the rest of my life. I fell in love with Erin. My family was able to spend time getting to know
their family during occasional visits. We agreed as a family that the Bates
were one of the sweetest and most encouraging families that we had ever met! We
hit it off so well! The summer of 2011 was when I really knew that Erin was the Girl for me. But there were areas in my life
that I had kept for myself and not surrendered to the Lord. God knew I needed
to grow in these areas and keep Him preeminent in my heart and life. Erin was the person that really challenged me at this
critical point in my life to do whatever it took to be ALL I could be for the
Lord. We spent about a year seeking the Lord, serving in Ministries, and
spending time with our families. This past fall, I was able to spend some more
extensive time getting know the Bates. We made so many memories together! I
asked Mr. Bates if I could have his permission to court Erin…and
he said he thought that might be a good idea. =) LOL I was so excited! I
decided to make a surprise visit to Tennessee
and ask Erin if I could court her… She
actually said, “YES!” =) I was so happy! God has answered so many prayers, and
He has made so many hopes and dreams become a reality!! I am truly grateful for
all of His goodness!
Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before
God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 62:8
As Erin and I seek the Lord for His
best for the future and what He has for Us, please keep us in your prayers! I
look forward to updating y’all on what He is doing! It’s been an adventure for sure…and
I think it will always be an adventure! =) I love Erin
and I am so grateful for her love, patience, and trust in the Lord. She truly
has challenged and motivated me to be the man that I should be! I am so grateful
that our paths crossed!! We are both looking forward to what God has for us together
in the future!
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and
lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he
shall direct thy paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6


    1. I commented on Erin's family blog as well…

      I am so glad to see that y'all aren't afraid to have gotten to know each other first and show your obviously deep affection for everyone to see. Youmake such a beautiful couple and your being so sweet and caring so much for her already will give you a great start on top of the Lords foundation He has built for you. It is so adorable that you are openly happy to have each others company! I know this is a huge blessing in multiple ways for you both. It's so great that you have found each other and have the opportunity to grow both in your faith and love for each other on your journey together. Good luck and God bless, Erin and Chad!

  1. I commented on Erin's family blog…

    You and Erin look so natural together! Such an attractive couple. And your growing in the Lord together can only be good for your lives. You seem like such a sweetheart and a genuine, caring man. I'm so glad you have had such opportunities to know each other seemingly well and to be so openly affectionate. Many others could only dream to have that even after marriage and that's sad! It seems y'all are multiply blessed to have found each other!
    Good luck and God bless in everything in your lives!

  2. Awww…Chad, you are definitely my best friend too! <3
    I am certainly the most blessed girl in the world! Thank you for the wonderful memories and the spiritual example you have shown! I love you, Chad! <3 <3

    1. Erin,
      You and Chad are so Sweet, to each other! You both set such good examples!!! Thank you for all you do, for the world.:-) Can't wait to here more!

      In His service,

  3. truly blessed by yours and Erin's commitment to God. what a blessing to read the beginning of a journey! May the Lord richly bless your relationship.

  4. I followed you over here from the Bates family blog. I just couldn't help it. Congratulations to you both! I married my best friend 12 1/2 years ago at the ripe old age of 19! He is still the love of my life and it is amazing how God has worked in our lives.
    Many prayers for you and Erin as you seek God's will and enjoy one another in this phase of your relationship!

  5. Awwwe! Congratulations! I have followed the Bates family a bit. I had to comment here as I saw you post on their blog.

    My husband's name is Chad. We have 6 children and it is sweet to see a young couple! We got married when we were 18 and 19 years old. We have had 6 children. I am 28 now and he is 29!!!

    May the Lord bless you both. I know He will as you are honoring HIM!!!

    So exciting.

    Jessica Argon

  6. Dear Chad,
    After my son benefited from you as his counselor at Journey to the Heart some years ago, I've been following your blog. In addition to benefitting from your meditations and work for the Lord, I was anticipating the day the Lord would bring you a helpmate. What a beautiful and godly woman Erin seems to be. I'm overjoyed for you both!
    May the Lord bless you as you continue your life-long journey in pursuit of Christ.
    Kindest regards,

  7. I was very encouraged to see the blog on the Bates' website about you too. May God continue to guide you in every step.

  8. Congratulations Chad and Erin!!! You don't know me, but I adore the Bates family! I will most definitely be praying for you both as you enter a new stage of life!

    God bless!!!

  9. Congratulations! May God bless you both with many years of love, health and happiness together! We are a relatively new ATI family and hope to be able to meet you all someday. We will remember you in our prayers!

  10. Mr Chad,

    Congrats!! I have know of the bates family for a while now and am very happy for you and Erin!! I'm praying that Gods will be done in your lives. I noticed that your both wearing rings in the pics, are the purity rings? I have kinda been investigating purity rings and was just wondering??

    Praying for you,

  11. Chad and Erin: Thank you for sharing your love story with others. You are pursuing this in such a Godly, Christ-centered way. Great things are in store for you both. Thanks for your opennness and honesty, and for setting such a fine example for all the young folk who are truly desirous of doing things God's way, and waiting for "His" best. Many blessings be bestowed upon Chad and Erin, oh Lord, from God our gracious Heavenly Father.

    In Him, Mrs. Penny Hook

  12. CONGRATULATIONS Chad and Erin! – God is so good! You sure got a good one Chad! – We will be praying for you as you enter this relationship.

  13. Congratulations Chad. I'm sorry that I only just now saw this, but I hope you two have a wonderful life. I'll never forget how you helped me on the Journey. God bless!

  14. Congratulations! It is exciting to see God working in your life! I laughed when I read how you said Mr. Bates said "I think it might be a good idea" – I can picture him saying that!
    2 Tim. 1:1-7

    God bless!

  15. My one question is, and i hope not too forward. So how are you at cooking?
    So happy for you both. Erin seems so sweet and beautiful inside and out. im sure shes more beautiful in person. 🙂

    1. Author

      LOL! No!…I don't think it's too forward! =D Contrary to what many people say and joke about, Erin actually can cook! LOL…and…yes, I can cook too! =) But eating is definitely not high on my list of priorities! (GRIN)…I am sooo blessed with Erin, and I know we are going to have so much fun learning together! =)

  16. Perhaps a little belated, but congratulations! I met Erin briefly at Nashville last year, and although we didn't talk long, I was impressed by her Christlike spirit of humility and friendliness. God has amazing plans for you, and I pray He will abundantly bestow His richest blessings on your lives!

    Best wishes and prayers,
    –Phil.1:27; 3:7-14

    1. Author

      Thank you James! Yes!!! She is a phenomenal pianist!! She amazes me! As for engagement, we are taking one day at a time! =) We are excited about the future!!

  17. What a beautiful couple!!! By the way, I'm not sure if this is a appropriate question, but how long usually is the courtship process? Many blessings, Corrie

    1. Author

      Thank you so much Corrie! I am truly blessed!! I am very overwhelmed at God goodness to me through Erin's life! =) The timing of every courtship is going to be different and tailored for the couple. =) Some choose a very short courtship, and others will choose a more extended period of time depending on the needs of the specific couple! =) The goal of Erin and I's courtship is to grow closer to the Lord, and in so doing we will grow closer to each other and learn more about each other and develop a vision for the future together! =)
      I hope that answers your question, Corrie!
      God bless!

      ~ Chad

  18. Congratulations to you BOTH! What a wonderful, exciting time in your lives.

    As a 45 year old woman with 2 children I must admit, when I first learned of 'courting' I rolled my eyes a bit, thinking the idea so old fashioned. After researching the principles of a Christian courtship I find it admirable. Courtship allows a young couple to build a relationship based on friendship, honestly and true purpose. You are learning about each other, taking your individual goals and weaving one life plan in which each person is fulfilled and can become a true 'helpmeet' to their partner. I wish I'd followed this practice as a young woman. I would absolutely encourage any young person to follow this alternative to casual dating. Being able to focus only on one person allows you to give 100% to developing a beautiful relationship that can last a lifetime.

    May God continue to bless you and Erin on your journey. I will be praying for you and your families.

  19. Congrats to you both!!
    What an encouragement you are to young people to follow in the Lords path and guidance! I have been married almost 7 years now. My advice to you would be to take the first year slow. Listen to each other.. Be extra thoughtful.. And never give up on date night.
    God bless you both!!

  20. Hi,
    A UK watcher of 19 kids and counting here. Have seen the Bates in a few episodes and was just looking them up and was directed to this blog.

    courting is a lost art over here in the UK. Very much a dating culture. It makes for a sad heart to see and participate in. Its so uplifting to see this practice is still being participated. Its important that young people respect themselves first then they can respect others. The same is said of love.

    A long and stable marriage awaits any couple that take such consideration and care before embarking on a life long commitment.

    Good Luck & blessings! Xx

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