I was invited by my friend Melissa of Glad Tidings By Mel, to share the story of how my husband and I met. Several others have joined in for some Valentine’s Day fun, and using the hashtag #AndThenTheyWereMine on Instagram, you can follow along and/or share a story of your own! I’m eager to read more tales about the early days of these relationships. It’s neat to look back at our story and see all that God has done. Here’s a bit about how we came to be!
I grew up in the Bay Area, CA but I attended college at the historic Tuskegee University in Alabama. In 2007 I moved back to California after completing my degree and working for a while. It wasn’t the smoothest of transitions, but as I looked for work and adjusted to being back home I knew I needed to find a church home. I didn’t grow up going to church, but after accepting Christ in college I became good friends with someone whose dad was a pastor in the area. I began attending that church, and that is where I first saw Kevin.
My first memory of him was seeing him up on the stage with the musicians and vocalists adjusting the sound for praise and worship. I’m sure we were introduced at some point, but he was so quiet and I thought he was very shy. I ended up being a part of the praise team so I came to know him as the sound guy, lol, and while we talked a little bit more as a result of that, it never went beyond that.
Fast forward a year, and he became a deacon at our church. During this time we’d hung out several times as part of a larger group of friends or at a church function, and I started to observe his humble character. He seemed like a good guy, and I believed he had a sincere heart for the Lord, but I still didn’t think there was anything more there. To my surprise he had apparently been observing me, and out of the blue he asked me out on a date.
We went to Starbucks, paid for ourselves, and it was so awkward! This was really the first time we were getting to know each other, but we fought past the weirdness and ended up having some great conversations. We agreed that we wanted to continue to move forward, went on some more dates (and yes he paid for those😉), and made things official pretty quickly. This was in October 2008, and just weeks after we made this commitment to be together he got cold feet and broke up with me. To say I was devastated is an understatement.
Things were awkward for a while. Our church was a small one and our home Bible studies were even smaller. We saw each other twice a week, faithfully, and the tension was definitely present. I was angry for the way he had abruptly ended things, but I’d be lying if there wasn’t a part of me that still thought he could be the one. In the meantime, my dad was battling non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and I knew that I needed to focus on God and what He had for me.
A year later, in October 2009, I went on a missions trip to Nigeria and this is where I received the call into ministry. My dad was in the hospital at the time, and before I left he shared a lot of things with me, including a conversation he’d had with Kevin without my knowledge. My dad had come to church with me and apparently at some point Kevin pulled him aside and apologized to him for the way he hurt me. I didn’t want to admit it, but my heart began to soften towards him.
A month later my dad died, and of all the people who were at his celebration of life (it truly was a celebration as he had accepted Christ as Lord and Savior just weeks before he passed away!), I distinctly remember Kevin embracing me with tears in his eyes expressing his condolences and telling me what a strong woman he thought I was.
That New Year’s eve he approached me after our watch night service and struck up a conversation. By this time we were back on good terms but my walls were up as I did not want to get hurt again. A friend of mine told me that she thought he finally came to his senses and was ready to pursue me, but I was in denial. From there he asked me out several times before I said yes, and it was only because it was to a movie I really wanted to see (Avatar, shameless I know🙈). But then God did something amazing.
We had some incredibly deep and honest conversations in which he revealed a real spiritual battle he’d been fighting during the time he first approached me. I had to be honest with myself and recognize that I probably was not as ready then as I thought I was, but we were both ready now to truly make things work. Kevin pulled out all the stops to show me that he had no intentions of hurting me again. He made amends with my family and friends who saw me hurting and quite literally swept me off my feet.
On March 6, 2010 he proposed to me on the beach in Half-Moon Bay, on May 8th we got married in our pastor’s home, and that August we had a wedding to celebrate our marriage.
This year I am so blessed to be going on six years of marriage with this man by my side and at the head of our family. It hasn’t always been easy but it has always been worth it. I learned so many lessons through our story and I’m learning them still. One thing is for sure though, our love story is most definitely my favorite. ❤️
Happy Valentine’s Day, and remember that God’s love for you is the greatest of all!!
EMBRACE HIS GRACE,