Our story is a combination of coffee, running, and a whole lot of grace + God’s perfect timing.
I moved to Texas the semester before I graduated college to student teach, spring of 2013. As soon as I moved to Texas I started attending my church, Faith Bible. Little did I know this was just the beginning of God’s perfect plan for Matt and I.
That semester was one of the most challenging for me because I left everything I knew behind in Iowa and moved my whole life to Texas. I was on a journey to find myself, but what I found instead was God’s grace and a personal relationship with Jesus + a husband.
I spent that entire semester working hard at being the best student teacher I could possibly be. I literally spent every evening creating lessons and activities that were engaging for the students that I was working with. There wasn’t a whole lot else for me to do since I didn’t know anybody in Texas, except my roommates. During the free time that I had (which was a lot because again, I was pretty isolated) I spent my time engaging in a bible series that my church was doing. They were set out on a journey to read the bible in a year. They had fancy guides and everything! So I set on that journey too. This season of my life was the most shaping for my faith and walk with Jesus. I had always gone to church and believed in God growing up but there was a disconnect between believing in God and walking in personal relationship with Him. It wasn’t until I spent the majority of my time digging into time with the Lord that I realized that God longs to be a part of everything we do in our daily lives. That’s walking with Him.
The entire semester of student teaching I did not really make any friends or get to know many people. I believe it was God’s way of calling me closer to Him and to grow into the person he desires for me to be.
After finishing student teaching and graduating college I spent my summer back in Iowa. In the fall, I moved back to Houston, this time downtown to the Heights. I jumped back in attending Faith Bible even though it was now a 45 min – 1 hour drive. I was hooked and unwilling to give it up.
It was a few months into my first year of teaching and I was determined to get involved at the church where I was growing the most, Faith Bible. That was when I looked up their small groups on the website and found the group called “college-ish” a small group for those who were in college or just out of college. I emailed the leader, my now husband, to get more information.
When I showed up at the church to attend my first small group, I was nervous about meeting new people but I was definitely determined. I had gone long enough without community in this new city.
As I walked into the room where the group met I was greeted by my ever so handsome husband, Matt. His first words were, “ Oh, so you’re Abby! The girl from the email.” I wasn’t really sure how to take that comment but I smiled and laughed.
We all went to Denny’s to hang out afterwards, because who doesn’t want some breakfast for dinner? Am I right?! I was instantly bombarded with questions about myself and my interests and how/why I moved to Texas. I’m not one to love being the center of attention so I turned bright red trying to answer all the incoming questions from the already group members.
After the first group, through answering questions over pancakes, Matt and I realized we had a lot in common. Some of those things being our love for running and our favorite coffee shop, Agora. But… at this time there was no spark or interest it was simply a blooming friendship.
Shortly after my attending my first group meeting, Matt and I decided to grab coffee one night at Agora because that was a common bond for us. I was under the impression it was simply just get to know you and chat over coffee as a newbie to the group. I even called my best friend, Abby, to tell her frantically, “I hope this isn’t a date, I don’t think this is a date, I don’t even know if I like him!” She always tells me now that she thinks I did like him and that I was only in denial.
Soon enough that one coffee turned into more coffees and running together. When we realized we enjoyed each other’s company so much he asked me out on our first official date! We spent the afternoon in Houston eating at Niko Niko’s and then riding our bikes through Herman Park, not to mention our first date was on his birthday!
After dating for 9 months, we knew it was a total God thing and that we were made for each other. He recreated our first date, got down on one knee, and asked me to be his wife!
Matt was my answered prayer! God knew exactly what he was doing when he moved me to Texas.