Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Kristy Speaks On How She Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: March 20, 2004

How she knew her husband was the one for her:

I was interning at a magazine and Roland came to visit for the summer. When I first met him, I thought, 'This guy is too serious.' At our first meeting, he advised me . 'If you did not come to work, you can go home...Yeah, that’s what I thought.' His version is a little different, but really how many ways can you say that differently and it sound any better? Anyway, we got over that first impression and continued to work together at the magazine.

While working there, we both decided to start looking for a car. Well, I was driving a 1995 Sky Blue Lincoln Continental (no air in summer and no heat in winter-LOL) and he was driving a Pinto...or something like that. One day he mentioned that he was going to start looking for a new car and I said something like, 'I need a new car myself.' And he asked me to go with him to the car dealership. So, I guess that was our first unofficial date: browsing the car lots.

We went out for the next few weekends, checking out cars and our friendship starting blossoming from there. Romantic? Not exactly, but we started talking on the phone more and really developed a great friendship. Shortly after that, he was preparing to go back to school in Ohio and we had to decide what was to become of our friendship. We decided to continue keeping in touch with one another to determine how we felt about each other after we were apart. Now, I would love to say that everything was awesome and we had no glitches along the way, but honestly, we were both figuring our relationship out. Neither one of us initially thought that we would get married. We actually both thought that we knew either who we were going to marry or what they would look like...and neither one of us fit that mold.

But the more we talked and visited one another, our plans changed and we decided to officially date. During that process, God showed us his desire for our relationship and we said, 'Yes.' We dated for three years, graduated college and got married in 2004. Looking back, we developed an awesome friendship that is a great benefit in our marriage. We have now been married for five years, have two kids (1 & 2 yrs old) and my husband is completing his last year of law school. I say all that to say, we all have plans of what our lives will be like after we get married; we think our knight is going to come and rescue us from our singleness, financial troubles and loneliness. But no matter whether married or single, God is the only source for peace. Marriage is great—with the right person at the right time!

What she loves about his mind: Roland is very smart and always interested in learning.

What she loves about his body: I love that he's fit and cares about physical fitness. And I love his smile.

What she loves about his spirit: He is a consistent, spirit-led man who desires for God to be glorified in His life .

Kristy's advice to single women about marriage:

“Life happens, looks change, finances have peaks and valleys and all of these can take place one after another or all at one time. So, it’s important to know that you’re getting married for the right reasons; to the right person God has for you. How do you know it’s the right person? God speaks. It might not be at the first date or at first sight, but God desires that we know His will. He will make it clear. Just believe in God's goodness and the performance of his Word.

Lee Speaks On How He Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: October 6, 2001

How he knew his wife was the one for him:

The first time I met Kimberly was at the skating center in Rivergate at a youth function. I had worked with the youth at our church for several years and I was transitioning out of that department and into working with the single’s ministry at our church. She had just moved here with her job from Atlanta and she had recently joined our church and was beginning to transition into working with the youth department. One of my lifelong friends, Arnetta Woodard, introduced me to Kimberly and asked if I could take her around the rink a couple of times. I said 'sure.' I did not think anything of it...actually, I thought she seemed nice and she looked so young that I thought she may have been a youth. After a couple of times around, she was very gracious and said, 'I am not that good at skating and you seem to really enjoy it, so you can just take me to the side on the next round.' I said, 'Okay' and that was it.

Fast forward about a year and I met her again, as I found out that we had lots of mutual friends in common. So, we became friends. She actually dated one of my old friends at that point, but they didn't continue dating when he moved to another city. So, time passed and we continued to be friends. Then one year I needed a date for our Pastor’s Anniversary Banquet. I had seen her dance, act and work with the youth at our church. I became increasingly drawn to her. So, I asked her if she would like to go to the banquet with me and she said she would let me know. See, I was proactive and asked her about two-and-a-half months before the event. So, a month went by and still no answer. I followed up with her and asked if she had made a decision and she said that she would go with me. Two weeks later, I said, 'Well, I do not want the first time we hang out to be at the banquet since there would be other people at the table and I did not want to be rude and ignore all of them, so maybe we should hang out before the banquet.' She said, 'Okay.' So, I took her to see Madame Butterfly, her first opera and mine. We went to dinner afterwards. I think we actually made it to the movies before the banquet as well. See, even white men have game. (smile)

It seemed like the more I hung out with her, the more time I wanted to spend with her. It got to the point where I wanted to give my heart to her and I could not. So, I broke things off with her and tried to come to terms with this blockage. It was a word from the Lord that I had received about a particular young lady being my wife and we had dated before for about five years. I knew that He had told me that she was the one. The only problem was she had since all that time, married someone else, divorced him and remarried. And all I was left with was what God had told me. So, I tried my best to process through that. I am too analytical some times for my own good.

I kept missing Kimberly though, and so I decided to call her again. I did. We talked on the phone from time-to-time. Months passed and we began hanging out again and I was growing to love Kimberly even more. Yet, I was still struggling with this word. So, it got to the point of where I had to make a decision because I did not want to keep stringing this woman along and it was not fair for her to be with a man who could not give her all of himself. So, we cried and prayed that night and God spoke to my spirit and told me NOT to make a decision to end the relationship until I spoke with three people. My response was, 'Well, if I can hear you tell me to talk with three people, then why can’t you just tell me what they are going to say?' He did not reply and His silence spoke volumes to me.

So, I shared that with Kimberly and we remained prayerful. I made the appointments to speak with the three people and each one of them gave me a piece of the puzzle to help me process through where I was. The one story that I will share with you that one of the individuals shared with me that brought me so much peace was that God changed His mind about a decision He had made to make Saul the King of Israel. So, God refused Saul as king (because of his disobedience) and chose David to be king, instead. For some reason, I had never seen it as God changing His mind, but He did. And so, what was revealed to me was that He (God) was taking me (the kingdom of Israel) from Saul (the lady he had spoken a word to me about marrying) and giving me to David (Kimberly) because she knew how to take care of the kingdom that was inside of me.

Well, that was all I needed to hear. But to further confirm His word, He also gave me a dream where I was on this operating table and I was cognizant of the fact that Kimberly was the surgeon. She cut me open and then left. Feeling abandoned I got up and put my insides back in and held them and went to look for her. As I started out the door, she came in and hurried me back to the operating table and I said, 'I thought you left me.' She said, 'No, I just need to get some tools that I needed to finish.' So, I woke up and immediately the Lord gave me an understanding of my dream. He said that I did not have to fear her finding out what was on the inside of me, because He needed to reveal that to her and I could trust her. He said that in order for her to get to where He needed for her to be, she needed what was on the inside of me and in order for me to get where He needed for me to be, I needed what was on the inside of her.

From that moment, I have never looked back. There is so much more, but I will stop here. We have been married now for nearly eight years and we have a three-year-old daughter, Princess Rose McGahey (that is another testimony unto itself).

What he loves about her mind: I like the way she processes details and makes sense of the world from her perspective. My wife was the council president and graduated valedictorian of her class in high school. She is extremely unassuming and brilliant. Although she has so much to brag about in terms of her intellect and accomplishments, that is not her way. That is one of the reasons why God put me in her life- to brag on the awesome woman that she is and all that she brings to the table.

What he loves about her body: Aside from the fact that she was the homecoming queen in college and after you get passed the fact that she is “5'5” with brown eyes and smile like the sunrise”, have you ever heard the song, “Brick House” by the Commodores (or I may be dating myself and telling my age here)? Enough said.

What he loves about her spirit: Try as you might, you will never find a woman more gentle, forgiving, nurturing, strong and the personification of First Corinthians 13:1-8.

Lee's advice to single men about marriage:

“Know who God is. Know who God says you are. Know what your passion and purpose are in life. Know how she is supposed to complement you and vice versa. Find the one who will treat you like a king, even when or if you have to live with her in the public housing projects (humility)-and once you find her, work hard to love her, protect her and provide for her the best palace you can- she deserves it...After all, she will be your queen!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Tyler Speaks On How He Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: September 2, 2007

How he knew his wife was the one for him:

I could go through a sequence of events that led up to me and my wife’s meeting but she covered that (see below this story); so let me get right to the moment that I knew I wanted her to be my wife.

We had spent a little over half a year getting to know one another with no talk of ever hooking up. Conversation is where it all began. Sure I saw pictures, heard her music, spent weird hours chatting online, a few phone conversations… right? I still had never met her face-to-face.

Finally, we met at a music conference in Orlando. The first meeting there was a ton of butterflies, but it was truly like seeing someone I’d known for a long time-I just had forgotten how beautiful she was. Fast forwarding through the days we spent together side-by-side, it hit me the early morning of taking her back to the airport. I literally felt nauseous that she was leaving back to Tennessee. In another day, I would be back in Michigan and the reality of I might be too scared to leave my home with my daughter and move 500 miles to a place I have nothing, started sounding like a sad love song in the was coming to an end and felt sick that she was leaving.

The ride to the airport, I bribed a friend to taxi us while we spent our last few moments together. We were both making promises to call, email and maybe even a couple of trips back and forth, but to me it wasn’t going to be enough. I decided during that ride to the airport that I was going to change my life and chase a dream with the woman I fell in love with. I went back to Michigan and 4-5 months later I took my daughter and myself to Nashville.

What he loves about her mind: I love many things about my wife and learning more everyday, so I’ll tell you three of her qualities and save the rest for myself. My wife’s mind is devoted to her familia. I not only love her, but I respect her for that.

What he loves about her body: My wife’s body…I love it all (come on, that’s a set up if I ever read one. LOL!).

What he loves about her spirit: A great quality she has is her unwavering faith in all things good which is a perfect balance for someone like me who for many years had very little.

Tyler's advice to single men about marriage:

“Stop looking for love… Instead practice what you would do if found it. When you want to become a better person because of someone, that’s when you know you should fall!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Krystel Speaks On How She Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: September 2, 2007

How she knew her husband was the one for her:

When I first met my husband, I was at the very end of a bad relationship. It was emotionally abusive and draining and after two years, I couldn’t take it anymore. I packed his stuff up, threw it onto his mama’s front porch and told him I didn’t want to see him again. I was done. I had a daughter to worry about, and so another disappointing (and possibly abusive) relationship was out of the question. This was my time to reflect and eliminate all of the noise in my life. I was NOT looking when I met my husband. But little did I know that my vow to never be in a bad relationship again would hold true!

I met my husband through an online artist community; kind of a precursor to MySpace Music. I was browsing the forums and saw a post from him that asked other artists to critique his music. So I critiqued, and asked him to return the favor. After that, we began to chat via email and IM over the next few months, and we both assumed it was platonic at this point. He was a single dad and a musician. I was a single mom and also a musician. But I would jump on the computer as soon as I got home to see if he was online. I knew that something was going on in my soul, but I didn’t yet understand it. Something felt different about this person, but still I resisted. It didn’t matter though; the seed was planted.

I didn’t tell anyone about my conversations with him, we just quietly and slowly got to know each other through these chats and emails. It’s amazing how a message can be read back over and over again, each time sinking in deeper and giving more insight into a person’s thoughts and values. He sent me a CD of his and I sent him one back. This was the only physical/ material connection that we had with each other at that point.

The physical attraction was there; he had seen pictures of me and I’d seen pictures of him and he commented on how he thought I was attractive, but we hadn’t yet met in person and we hadn’t yet spoke on the phone. He lived in Michigan and I lived in Tennessee. I knew he felt the same way. He hinted just enough to make me believe that his feelings were there as well.

One day, he emailed me about a music conference he was attending in Orlando. He suggested I go to it to network and...oh yeah, to meet him. I told him that sounded cool. I’d see what I could do. Inside though, I was determined to find a way by any means necessary to get to Orlando. I had to meet this man! I didn’t know what it would bring, and my friends and family thought I was crazy for even considering it: What if he’s some crazy stalker on the Internet? What if he doesn’t look anything like his pictures? I already knew him though. That seed had grown into something bigger and this trip would just confirm the feelings I had been trying to suppress.

On April 9, 2003, I arrived by plane in Orlando and took a cab to my hotel room. He said he would call me when he and his friends got to the hotel. Around 10p.m. that night, I got a call to my room. It was him! He asked if I wanted to get something to eat. Of course, I did. There was a knock on the door. I opened it and there he was. I gave him a big hug and a rush of emotion came over me.

Over the next three days, we talked into the early hours of the morning. By the time I left for the airport, we were figuring out a way for him to move to Nashville. That’s when I knew he was my husband. Four months later, he and his daughter moved to Nashville.

We were married on September 2, 2007 and honeymooned in Orlando, FL.

What she loves about his mind: His grounded and sensible nature. He helps keep me from making rash decisions and teaches me how to take things a step at a time. And he’s not materialistic. It’s his most godly quality.

What she loves about his body: His deep blue eyes. They’re so striking, I can see them from across a room and they take my breath away.

What she loves about his spirit: His self-confidence. When he’s able to tear up over a touching news story or TV show and not be embarrassed, I know he has confidence in himself and our relationship.

Krystel's advice to single women about marriage:

Ladies, listen to your God-given instincts. We too often ignore them for fear of hurting someone’s feelings or not acting as others would believe we should act. Don’t let fear hold you back from a joyful life, whether that’s with a new relationship or preventing a destructive one.

Chelsea Speaks On How She Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: September 7, 2001

How she knew her husband was the one for her:

I met my husband through his Aunt Rhonda. I began working with Rhonda in September of 1999, only two months after I took a pledge of celibacy and TOTALLY rededicated my life to Yahweh. After only three weeks of working together, she inquired of my 'status'. I told her that I was single and was not looking. She told me that she liked my spirit and thought I would be a good match for her nephew who resided in Massachusetts. We continued to talk and before the long, the conversation switched to a different topic, and that was the last that I had heard of her nephew.

In June of 2000, Rhonda informed me that she had had a telephone conversation with her nephew the night before and had mentioned me to him. She stated that she intended to give him my phone number, but had forgotten my phone number at work. She entreated me to call him. I totally refused at first...only to find his name, email address and phone number being shoved in my hand, and me being shoved into my office with a plea of a promise that I would call or email him that same day. After vacillating about if calling him would be appropriate and the right thing to do, I acquiesced to her wishes, and promised that I would send an email that day.

I prayed before typing and sending the email. My prayer was simple. 'Give me the right words to say, and if this is not YOUR will, don’t allow him to respond.' I received a response in less than one hour. The response was both funny and captivating.

Daniel began emailing me daily, and I continued to pray BEFORE RESPONDING to his emails. My prayer was simple: 'Give me the right words to say.' Daniel eventually requested that we meet online to begin our 'Instant Messaging' (IM) relationship. I was so impressed by the simple-yet-IMPORTANT factor that he would establish the meeting time, and always met me ON TIME. He was NEVER LATE. In fact, he was often WAITING FOR ME.

After two weeks of emailing and IM each other, Daniel asked if he could have my phone number so that he may call and hear my voice. (Yes, ladies…it took me two weeks to give up the digits.) You see, along with my vow of celibacy, I also vowed to move at a snail’s pace with whomever I became interested in. I’ll have to share my 'From Singlehood to Marriedhood' testimony at a different time.

The first telephone conversation was nerve-racking for me because it was then that I decided to reveal my vow of celibacy to Daniel. I decided to reveal this during our first telephone conversation because the phone call itself was personal in that we were hearing one another’s voice for the first time, which had a certain feeling of intimacy that IM and emailing did not have. Additionally, I decided to reveal my celibacy as a second part of my prayer, which was also simple: 'If he will not respect my vow of celibacy, then let this be our last conversation.'

After disclosing my vow of celibacy to Daniel, he simply stated, 'Well, I’ll have to think about that.'

The conversation continued and two hours later, we were saying goodbye. Although I was unsure if I would ever hear from Daniel again, I was sure that I had done the right thing of disclosing my celibacy to him. Daniel emailed and called the next day. We continued emailing, IM'ing and talking on the phone for another four weeks before he even saw a single photograph of me. By this time, Daniel, in his own words, stated, 'I don’t care if you look like Sha-Nay-Nay, because you have a brotha sprung already. After all, Sha-Nay-Nay needs love, too.' Isn’t that the most hilarious thing you have heard!? We laughed for days about that, and sometimes still laugh about it! Ladies, it did not matter to Daniel what I looked like because he was truly getting to know ME first, as opposed to the exterior of me first.

To make the long of a story short, Daniel decided to propose to me in August of 2000 (Yeah, you did the math right). He proposed only two months after receiving my initial email. We decided to elope because most importantly, that is what I have always wanted to do, and secondly to minimize negative feedback from relatives, friends and associates. Daniel’s single request was that we have a formal wedding that would be officiated by a pastor. Our wedding date was September 7, 2001---the weekend of Labor Day. Daniel flew from Massachusetts to California on September 6th. Our INITIAL meeting in the airport was magical-yet-surreal. All we could do was smile, grin, hug and kiss one another. Others knew we were in love. Passersby would make nice comments about how good we looked together, how happy we looked and how much we beamed. We planned the perfect wedding. IT WAS A DAY THAT I SHALL NEVER FORGET AND NEVER WISH TO REPEAT WITH ANYONE ELSE.

I knew Daniel was my husband when he consistently displayed the following characteristics: Respect for my time, respect for my choices and respect for my relationship with Yahweh.

What she loves about his mind: I love that he is able to say “I’m sorry.”

What she loves about his body: I love my husband’s hands because they are magical, and I love the way his eyes squint almost shut when he laughs really hard.

What she loves about his spirit: I love the way he holds me when I don’t want to be held (when I am angry).

Chelsea's advice to single women about marriage:

Know and understand the definition of crazy. Essentially, the definition of crazy is doing the same thing, expecting different results. So, if you are tired of entering into dead-end relationships with men, only to end up feeling empty, used and lonely, link up with Elohim. Give Him ALL OF YOU. Commit yourself to His ways and take the leap of faith to make the necessary changes in your life, so that you may be perfectly aligned with Him. He will provide the man that you need. And always remember, as my 99-year-old grandmother would say, “What’s for you, you going to have and nobody else, ‘cause it’s for you, honey.”

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Guinness World Records' Oldest Living Married Couple...

After 84 YEARS OF MARRIAGE, Herbert and Zelmyra Fisher are still going strong...

James Speaks On How He Knew

Wedding Anniversary Date: November 27 and December 1, 1973

How he knew his wife was the one for him:

Corlis and I met in 9th grade. She was 'the new girl' at the school who was from out of town and had moved to Baton Rouge, LA. We were in the same home room and she wanted nothing to do with me. My twin brother and I were class clowns and ran with the 'jocks'. My best friend, Anthony had crushes on Corlis and her friend, Terri. They were both skinny as pool cues. When my father found out that I liked 'that skinny girl', he said her legs looked like 'socks on a rooster.'

Corlis really had nothing to do with me for about a year. That may have been because I would go to the window of her classes and tell her I was going to marry her. I was stuck on her. I had an old girlfriend of mine arrange to have Corlis come to our neighborhood for a visit so I could meet up with them. We got to walk together and talk. Later that summer, one of our classmates had a pool party at her house and we met up there. While we were sitting around talking, Corlis came and sat on the carpet at my feet. I've never stopped loving her since that night.

We met in 1969 in 9th grade. I was 13 and she was 14-years-old. We started 'going together' in 10th grade in 1970. Corlis' father was sent to Vietnam (he was a career Army officer) and she left Baton Rouge and went to her hometown of Des Moines, Iowa. This was our 11th grade year. Corlis graduated early from high school and returned to Baton Rouge to attend Southern University while I completed my senior year of high school.

The summer following my high school graduation in 1973, I was determined not to let Corlis get away again so I rented her an apartment. She was 18 but I was only 17-years-old. We leased the apartment in her name and I worked a couple of jobs to take care of her. I turned 18- years-old during my freshman year of college. This was October, 1973.

We were married in November of 1973.

We've been married now for thirty-five years. There are tears in my eyes as I recall this for sharing with you. I love her so. She has always been able to bring into my life, my personality, my decision making, my undertaking what I was lacking. My love for her has made and continues to make me a better man. We were both mature for our ages, yet we both needed another to bring the strength and security needed to face life. We've been facing life...loving life...doing life together for just about all our lives.

What he loves about her mind: I love that she's never let me push her around in life. She's been clear and honest about what who she is and what boundaries she's established. This makes me respect her - her tenderness and her firmness.

What he loves about her body: The softness of her heart toward me and others has softened my soul so that I've lost the need to protect myself from her.

What he loves about her spirit: I TRUST Corlis. Many women do not understand that so often men who love are just as afraid of being hurt as women are. For 35 years Corlis has not betrayed my trust. For that I am infinitely grateful. Some men consider themselves blessed for finding the woman they believe they can live with. I'm blessed because I've found the woman I can't live without.

James's advice to single men about marriage:

“The true joy in marriage is in giving to one whom you trusted to spend your life with. No matter what I give to her---even when it's in short supply (time, money, energy, etc.)---God always gives me more of it than I had before I gave to her.”