So, the love story continues….although at this point, I wouldn’t yet call it a LOVE story. I was still not exactly loving Louis, but it had only been a little over 3 weeks, right? Not sure I believe in the whole “love at first sight” thing. But, anyway. Louis and I had date night every Sunday night. It was awkward sometimes for me. Still is sometimes. What in the world was I doing dating (now married to) a pastor. I am NO where near pastor’s wife material. Aren’t they the ones who lead women’s ministry, wear pink and act prim-and-proper? Aren’t they the ones who model a Proverbs 31 Woman? Not exactly my style, right? So, that in itself was a bit much.
THEN, Louis had to go and invite me to his official installation service at his church (where he had been an interim pastor for a few years) on January 20, 2007. Do I go? Do I not go? This is weird! Who am I to him at this point? It’s going a little fast! But, I went! Thanks to Florence for going with me!!!! It’s funny now to think I met his 2 good friends, Bob Fitch and Chic Silver…sitting right behind me…for the first time. I remember Bob insisting we hug….because “we’re huggers”. (btw – glad I was there for it!)
The kids were getting to know Louis and checkin’ him out. I was Miss Marti, you know, a surrogate Mom in many cases. So they weren’t too sure about it. Not to mention…it was different….different than what most of them experienced. Louis was a total gentleman. Treating me with respect, he opened the car and house doors for me (still does actually!!!). Needless to say…he didn’t spend the night with me. And we hadn’t even kissed. The kids actually got to watch Louis court me…and they had many questions about that as they watched us. I’m glad that we got to show them how it can be….how it should be.
So, I had prayed for a change of heart, and got it on our first Saturday night date! For some reason, I got to see the real side of Louis Williams, and I liked it. After eating dinner and listening to John and Kim play (yes..they were the first to meet us as a couple!!!). Although it was a “school night” for Louis, we stayed up waaaay to late considering he had to preach the next morning. But, it was fun.
Trust me…this is leading somewhere! Stick with me.
Sunday night date night comes along, and we decided to stay close to home and throw something on the grill. For a number of reasons, we didn’t get around to eating until late. The kids were already back from youth group and 2 of them, Tony and Mike, were hanging out watching football and doing laundry (theirs! Not mine!) Louis was getting ready to check the meat one more time…and was walking through the breakfast nook (the windows on the right side of the 1st floor). This is when it all began. Gunshots…and a lot of them…went off. It sounded like it was inside the house.
I had heard shots before….but from a distance. Not so close. We all hit the floor. I was on top of the boys, calling 911. Louis, who saw the muzzle flash reflect off the window, crawls over to the windows to look out. This is when he saw one man on the ground and another one on top of him, beating him. With the police still on the phone, I crawled to the ½ bath where I could see better…and the victim was now alone on the ground. After calling out to let Louis know, Louis and I proceeded to go out the back door, to do what? We had no idea. We just knew that a guy had been shot just feet from the back door…and we needed to do something
If you are late in coming to the story…you MAY want to consider reading the past posts….go to the bottom and click Louis and Me! This is where you will find each post in order…telling the story of how I met the other ½ of my pair!
OK…picking up where I left off in the story of how I met the other ½ of my pair.
So…I had asked the Women’s Bible Study on Faith to pray. Which they promised me they would! I was still believing in what God had told me….that I would meet the other ½ in December. My buddy Marc had confirmed it stating that he felt I would meet someone in 4th quarter. Again…we could both be right!
Early December comes, and Marc asks if I had met “him” yet. I responded no, not yet…God still has another 21 days. He hung his head hung LOW! I had never seen him quite like that before. He starts apologizing to me….telling me that he thought he had heard the Lord correctly….thinking that I wasn’t going to meet him. I would have NOTHING to do with it. Telling him NOT to give up…that I was STILL believing. That is what God told me…and I am holding Him to it. I may not have mentioned this before, but when I prayed….I kinda gave God a deadline. Having heard that you should pray specifically, I prayed that I would meet him by the end of the year. Then, God said it would be in fact be December.
Previously, Don Coleman had told me about this guy that he thought I should meet back in the summer, but he never called. Other than that…there had been ZERO interests! But, I was believing!!!
At that women’s study, I had the great pleasure of meeting my now good friend Jennifer. On Saturday, December 22 we went to dinner after church. We were just getting to know one another and were just hanging out when she asked if I had met “Mr. December” yet. I obviously said No. But I was still believing…God still had 9 more days! We laughed at the Mr. December idea and continued to eat. Then, Jennifer paused, set her folk down and said…so, I’ve been praying about this…and I think I am supposed to tell you. There’s this guy….
I was like WHAT?!?! This “guy”? She continued to tell me about him. I sat there and shook my head “No! There’s no way! He’s not interested!”
I couldn’t believe it. My new friend Jennifer was sitting across the table telling me about the SAME guy that Don Coleman told me about months prior! I just KNEW it was the same guy….and I said….JP, he’s not interested. Don’s already told me about “this guy” (I didn’t have a name at this time!). Jennifer was convinced that it couldn’t be the same guy. She didn’t think that Don and “this guy” knew each other. So, I got Don on the phone. Once I filled Don in on our conversation, he simply asked…what’s his name? And Jennifer told me….Louis Williams. Lo and behold, Don AND my new friend from the bible study were telling me about the SAME GUY!!! 6 months apart!!! Needless to say…we were a little in shock!
So..the first thing I do is google him….NOTHING. Yes guys….we google you!!!! So, be careful what you put out there. Ladies..you do the same! LOL.
The rest of the night, I kept saying…Jennifer, really? Is this for real?
Long story short….Louis had spent some time with Don back in the summer sharing his heart. A few months later he had dinner with friends Becky and Lowell. Becky felt called to pray for Louis that he would meet his “God Woman”. She is a busy woman, mom, wife, volunteer and professional. Becky doesn’t have time to be a matchmaker, but she mentioned to Jennifer that she was praying for Louis to meet someone. This was shortly AFTER I shared the “Mr. December” with my Bible Study. Rather than jumping on it, Jennifer took time to pray about it first, which I sincerely appreciate.
Now it’s 12.22.07 and Becky and Jennifer went to work to get Louis and me connected….just a couple days before Christmas….when folks are busy, traveling, prepping for the day. But, I think we all had forgotten about the December deadline. Plus – I was now kinda freakin’. Could this ACTUALLY happen?!?!?!? Really????
Side note: Now, before you think too poorly of Louis….there had been a break down in communication back in the summer. THAT is why he never called. But, later you will learn that God’s timing is PERFECT!