I was 18, just moved out of my mom's house, working at a coffee shop. I wasn't doing much. I had been a Christian for just over a year, was trying to figure out how to live a Christian life and how to be grown up. I was attending church at the Burn Vineyard, going to lots of Bible studies, and I was feeling very content and happy in life.
One summer day, I went to visit my friend at her work. She worked at a deli, owned by a friend, her brother. As I walked in, I saw a guy standing in line and God spoke to me clearer than day... He told me that guy would be a HUGE part of my life. Well, since I was happy and content in life, I decided to ignore Him. (Does that ever work? :) ) I went on with what I was doing, visiting with my friend on her lunch break. I even went so far as to make fun of the guy. Then he came up to us. I was thinking, "Oh no, oh no." He told us he was new in town and he asked where we went to church. (He had seen my friend with a Bible) After a little conversation, he left. I thought, there that's done.
Oh no. Over the next few weeks, I proceeded to see him EVERYWHERE I went. He would smile, and I would try to smile back, but I was not happy. Finally, he showed up at an event at my church. I was with my "cool" friends and did not want him to interfere. Of course, he walked right up to me and I was forced to introduce him. Looking back, he says, I was new in town, I wanted to get to know people. I had met one person (yes, me) and I thought she would act like a Christian and be kind and welcoming. Instead she was rude and standoffish. (Yes, I was.)
Next, he began going to my Bible study and hanging out with my friends. I was aghast the night he walked into my work with a bunch of my friends. They thought he was neat, and I decided to put a stop to it. I pulled my best friend aside and said, "Please stop hanging out with him. When I first saw him God told me he was going to be a big part of my life. Now I know why, he's going to stalk me and kill me." Yes, I said this. I had decided that since I was happy and didn't want new people in my life, this must be it. This must be why he was everywhere I was. ( No, of course it couldn't be that we lived in a small town and he only knew a few places, and these just happened to be the places that I hung out)
My friend, of course, didn't believe me...I didn't really believe myself. Then one night while I was working, in he walked with his brother. He came straight up to me and asked, "Why are you so standoffish?" I said, "I am not! I am the nicest person in the world, everyone says so." He responded, "You may be nice to everyone else, but you certainly aren't nice to a Christian who is new to town and is trying to get to know people." I knew he was right, but I couldn't admit to it. Instead, I decided I had to prove him wrong. "I am nice. Want to hang out when I get off work?"
That night after work I went to Denny's with him and his brother, still trying to deny what I knew, but God was definitely softening my heart to him. For the next week, we spent time together constantly. After that week, I was working again, when someone I worked with said to me, "There's someone here." I looked out from the back to see who it was and it was him. Right then I knew, and there was no point in denying it anymore. I said to my co-worker, "That's the guy I'm going to marry." As soon as I said it I felt total relief, and realized how in love with him I was.
After work that night, we were talking, and he asked me what God was saying to me. I said, "Um, we're going to get married." He replied, "Yeah, we are."
That was that. We both knew, we were both elated. It would be difficult, I knew. He had a 6 year old son, so I wasn't just going to be a wife, but a mother, and remember, I was only 18. It was wonderful though. We decided not to postpone, we wanted to begin our lives immediately. So, 5 months after we had met, we officially became James and Amy Hughes.
Ian was with us from the beginning
Then came Layla
Soon after, Josiah
Next, the twins
I think God knew what He was doing. :)
And Happy Birthday Liam Wahl! Two years ago we spent our anniversary in the hospital awaiting your arrival. We love you and your beautiful mama!