When Isaac Maina, 31, met Faith Mwende, 30, during a church service at CITAM Valley Road in 2012, she was just another worshipper. So how did this relationship escalate to marriage? They share their love story with HENRY KAHARA.
They say love can be found anywhere and so it was for Pastor Isaac Maina and Faith Mwende. Both were serving as missionaries at CITAM Valley Road when they met and before long realised they were meant to be an item.
“I joined CITAM Valley Road in 2012 and immediately joined the missions ministry. Coincidentally, Isaac happened to be the group leader. Together with other members, we attended many missions and it is in the process that friendship between us started,” Faith starts off the interview.
Isaac, who had been praying for people to join him in the ministry, was glad when Faith became part of the team. She proved to be instrumental as she sacrificially gave her all to ensure the missions they undertook were successful. Slowly but surely, the pair would be drawn to each other.
“Ours was not love at first sight,” reveals Isaac.
Their friendship would be given a major boost after a mugging incident that saw Faith lose her personal belongings including a phone. Isaac recalls that in 2013 Faith was robbed along Waiyaki Way and it happened that she called him for assistance.
“The first person I thought of calling for help was Isaac. I had memorised his number so I used a Good Samaritan’s phone to call him. Since he was far away from Nairobi, he sent his friend to pick and drive me to my house,” Faith narrates.
When they met in church the following Sunday and Faith recounted how the mugging happened, Isaac didn’t hesitate to give a brand new phone he had bought the previous week. “I gave her the phone as I knew she desperately needed one and left myself with an old one,” says Isaac while acknowledging he had a soft spot for Faith who had become a close friend and with each, his feelings for her deepened.
It was not until later that Isaac opened up to Faith about his feelings for her hoping she too had similar feelings, but she just asked for time to think about it. “I decided to give her all the time she needed and after some months came back and told me the feelings were mutual,” says Isaac.
Dowry payment and wedding ceremony
“The process of starting our courtship and marriage journey was not easy as, at the time, I was a student pursuing theology but God came through for us,” says Isaac who is now a pastor at CITAM Rongai.
The couple says they approached every step leading to their marriage with prayers, as they did not want to engage in any culture that contradicted their Christian beliefs. They prayed and worked together for dowry payment and other traditional celebrations, as they wanted God to guide them through.
“If you want your marriage to work from the word go, make sure you work together with your partner. This helps to make things easier for both of you,” advises Faith.
Although the couple didn’t have money for their wedding, friends, and people they had served in the church supported them. “I was an intern pastor at the time and so didn’t have resources. We had a fundraiser but the money we got was not enough. Some of our friends offered their services for free and this reduced the wedding expenses,” says Isaac.
Faith says the wedding preparation period helped them to learn the art of sticking together through thick and thin. “Even before we took our vows on August 29, 2015, at CITAM Parklands, we had learned to be a team and to shield each other against any blows coming our way,” she remarks.
They advise couples entering marriage to keep their trust in God and seek advice and guidance from mature people who have similar values like them. They further urge them to always honour God with what they have including their bodies, as God honours those who honour him.