In honor of our 8 year anniversary, I am sharing the story of how James and I met and how God guided our relationship. You can read part one here.
To catch you up, I met James, he shoved sausage patties in his mouth, I thought he was weird, hung out with him months later, thought he was cute and not so weird. God started speaking to me about our future, told me I would marry James and and told me on June 16th that our relationship would begin in three months ( est. September 16th). That is the short version 😉
Anyways, on to part two…
The next three months (summer break) I spent with Nikayla, Chaselyn, and our new friends from church. James was there every time we all hung out. We quickly became friends. We spent the summer getting to know each other, talking on the phone for hours, and spending nearly everyday together. The new school year started (my junior year) and on September 16th, three months to the exact date, James called me and told me he had feelings for me and ask me to be his date to homecoming. I was floored and overwhelmed that I really did hear from God! This has been a pivotal moment in my life since it has shown me God does speak to us and he keeps his promises.
The night of the homecoming we both shared our first kiss with each other and he asked me to be his girlfriend. And we lived happily ever after. BAHA! Not! We were still 16 year old kids. Nothing is ever happily ever after without some bumps in the road. We dated for a little while but then James came to me one night and said he wanted to end things. He said something about our relationship did not feel right. He didn’t know why but he felt that something was off. I was hurt. I knew God spoke to me. He gave me an insane amount of confirmation that he really was speaking to me. Way more then I could ever share without this being an insanely long post (when it already is).
At this point, James and I broke up. We still saw each other because we went to the same church and had the same friends. We didn’t really talk and we never hung out just us. A few months went by and James and I started to just naturally start talking again. We then started to build a deeper friendship without any of the dating pressures. We had a conversation about dating and what it looks like for the two of us. James told me that he feels that I am not the type of person he could date and break up with. That I was the type of person to date and marry. And I said ABSOLUTELY! You cannot just date me to break up with me when you get bored. I am not doing it. He then told me he was not ready for that type of relationship because we were only 17. He also said he didn’t want to date around with other people because it was pointless since he had feelings for me. At this time we decided to enter into a courtship. We didn’t know that is what it was called. It just happened naturally. I didn’t realize that we “courted” until I was an adult and another adult told me. Ha! That night, James and I decided that we would intentionally spend time together and see where this relationship could go when we were ready. We would not date anyone else, we would be committed to each other, but we were not going to become boyfriend and girlfriend until we wanted to get married. Now looking back, the reason our relationship felt “off” to James, is because God was calling us to court. He had a different structure that he wanted us for and we just needed to figure that out.
We did not share with many people what we decided because there was a lot of pressure coming from our peers and people not being supportive. So, to most people, they thought we were really good friends. Which we were, however, the mentors in our lives, our parents, and some close friends; they knew the type of relationship we had was more than just friends.
The next few years James grew to be my very best friend. We were there for each other during all life’s craziness. I moved out of state for college, to Florida, and James took a gap year and spent it in California with his sister and brother in law. We were on opposite sides of the country but still spoke everyday day. We only grew closer, even though it was really hard to be so far away.
One day after James and I got done video chatting, James’ mother came to him and asked him about us. She told him that he would have to make a decision. He couldn’t keep us in this lingo stage. He either commits or walks away. At the time, I had no idea this conversation happened. Because around the same time, I called James myself and told him something very similar. I told him I wanted to know what his intentions were with me. We were 19, almost 20, I was at college, and I got asked out on a few dates and had to say no to all of them. I told him that if he didn’t want a future with me to tell me so I can walk away. I was speaking out of frustration because I still knew in my heart that God told me that I was going to marry James.
A few months went by and James called me after he got done with work and I got done eating dinner. It was a normal time for us to talk since there was a three hour time difference. This call however, was different. He called me and told me that he loved me and wanted to marry me. He then asked me to be his girlfriend.
A few months later, I was home in Ohio for the summer and James surprised me by flying to Ohio and he proposed. A year later we got married on June 27, 2009 at the same church we met. During our ceremony I couldn’t help but praise God for his promises on our lives. Our marriage isn’t perfect, we are not perfect. We have been through a lot of crazy things in the 8 years that we have been married. But, the one thing my marriage has shown me, is God is alive and he always keeps his promises. I wouldn’t choose anyone else to be married to and walk through life with. I am one blessed lady!