How did you go about dating or courting your wife? When did you know she was the one for you!
Four years ago, I was working as a missionary journalist and living in Chile.
I had a lot of time to myself there, so I decided to start an art project. I began illustrating each chapter of the Bible and posting my drawings to a blogging platform I had just discovered called tumblr. (That’s how this blog began.)
It wasn’t long before I found that tumblr was as much a social network as a blogging platform, and a small group of Christian bloggers from around the world formed a friendship with me.
One of those bloggers was a curly-haired Canadian girl named Ashley - and I quickly developed a crush on her.
So I did the mature thing and sent her flirtatious anons. :P Then I posted this picture I drew of her, hoping to get her attention:
We began chatting on facebook and got to know each other better. And by the time my service in Chile ended in 2011, we were talking every day. I moved back to the States, months passed and things between us became more romantic.
We wanted to meet IRL before making our relationship official, but different things in our lives forced us to wait for more than a year. It was weird because we knew each other better than anyone, but still hadn’t actually been together in person yet. Finally, in November of 2012, we met in Seattle for our first date.
I knew, before getting there, that if Ashley was the same in person as she was online, I would marry her as soon as I could. And to my joy, she was.
I told her I love her, and she said it back. And we began making plans to be together.
A month later, I flew to Canada to spend Christmas with her family. Unfortunately, we got into a car wreck on that trip. But it was a bonding experience in a way, and it showed us that we could get through anything together.
Not long after I returned home, Ashley did some research and discovered a heartbreaking reality: The legal process for marrying across the border is time consuming, complicated and expensive. …So we started right away.
In the meantime, Ashley came to visit my family in April 2013. On her first night in Colorado, I took her hiking up a mountain to look at the city lights. There, I got down on one knee and asked her to run away with me. SHE SAID YES! (And my buddy got it all on camera.)
It would be four more months before the government finally got around to moving Ashley’s case forward. We submitted more paperwork. She went to an interview. And I payed more fees.
And finally, she was approved and given a K-1 fiancé visa!
I drove two days up to Canada, helped her pack her things and then moved her to Colorado.
For the next two months, Ashley stayed with my parents (who live nearby) and we planned our wedding. The visa only gave us 90 days, so we had to work fast.
Then, we flew up to Seattle and, on November 9, 2013 - the anniversary of our first date - my dad married us on a beach of Bainbridge Island.
We honeymooned in a cabin at the base of Mt. Rainier. Then drove back to Colorado and moved her stuff into my apartment.
We’ve now been married three months. We’re active in our church. We spend time with family. And we hike whenever we get the chance.
Most importantly, we’re working together to serve God and those around us - And we’re together.
The government still hasn’t fully processed Ashley’s immigration. (In fact, its offices have screwed things up at every step, and if you could pray for this process, we’d greatly appreciate it.) But God is with us, and we trust Him for our protection and provision.
And that – by the grace of God – is how it happened.
So it all kind of unfolded here on tumblr, and people who’ve been following us for a while got to watch it happen - which is pretty cool.
Peace, love and Jesus,