Shannon here: Inspirational fiction author, Joi Copeland shares her proposal story, plus a chance to win a copy of her debut novel, Hope for Tomorrow. Every time you comment on any post dated May 28 – June 1, your name goes in the drawing. Deadline: June 9th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Joi:
Chris and I had been dating for a year and a half. We had talked about marriage already. It was just a matter of when, where, and how long to date until the time was right. Chris decided he was going to take me on four special dates in the month of September and October.
We went to San Diego, to the Griffith Observatory, and two other ones that honestly escape me. On the final date, he had me dress nicely. We went to the church he was leading worship at that Sunday morning. Right before we left, Chris sang a song about being glad, “Joi is not a boy.” My roommate got a big kick out of that one!
We drove to the Ritz Carlton for afternoon tea. My grandmother started my tea cup collection in 1996. She gave me a tea cup that belonged to her grandmother. Chris knew my love for tea, and had planned for us to have a lunch tea.
The room was beautiful and big, if memory serves me right. Tables were scattered around the dining area. There was a big mirrored wall on one side and huge windows on the opposite. We were seated right next to the huge windows overlooking a gorgeous landscape of a stream with willow trees right beside it.
Earlier that day, Chris had given me a gift bag to hold. He told me not to peek (which I could have because he left me alone quite a few times, but I didn’t). We enjoyed a scrumptious meal of several different types of tea sandwiches, scones, and yummy desserts. The tea wasn’t too bad, either. Finally, Chris said we should go for a walk along the path that led to a bench.
As we neared the bench, another couple was seated there, enjoying the view of the stream. Chris was frustrated that someone had taken the bench we were headed towards. I kept telling him not to worry, we could find a new one. Nope! That did not work for my boyfriend.
He left me alone with the gift one more time. I sat down on the grass and prayed God would still Chris’ frustrated heart. I began to question if this was the day he was going to ask me to marry him. I quickly erased the thought from my mind. I had given Chris specific instructions that before we got engaged, he needed to ask for my hand in marriage from my dad and my brother-in-law. I had no knowledge of that happening, so I brushed the thought from my mind.
After a few minutes, Chris returned, less stressed and more at ease. We headed toward our bench. Once there, we sat down. Chris told me to open the gift. The first part was a hand painted tea cup. It was adorable! The second was the tea saucer with the words, “Will you marry me?”
I wish I could say I was speechless, but that isn’t the truth. I began to ramble, “But when did you talk to my dad and Russell? When did you have time for that?”
Chris had to interrupt me to get a word in edgewise. He knelt before me. “If you will stop talking, I need to ask you something.” He grinned. “I love you more than life itself. I would like nothing more than to make you my wife and spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?”
I began to cry and nodded yes. He slipped the ring on my finger. We stood, hugged and kissed, only to find a group of people watching us.
While I was waiting for Chris to come back, he had gone to see the manager about getting our bench. He had reserved it prior to our arrival, but the sign never made it to that bench.
We left the Ritz to go to my sister’s house. There, Chris had arranged a surprise engagement party! It was a glorious and wonder filled day! One I will always remember! And to this day, I have never regretted saying yes to this amazing man!
About Joi: Joi Copeland is married to a wonderful man, Chris, and has three amazing boys, Garrison, Gage, and Gavin. She is living the dream in beautiful Denver, Colorado. She home schools her boys and loves being a wife and mom! Joi enjoys spending time with her sister Steffanne, and loves to sit and have a cup of coffee or tea with friends! She has been a Christian for over twenty years. Following Jesus has been the best decision she has ever made. Joi’s first novel, Hope for Tomorrow, was published in 2011.
About the book: Josephine came from a close-knit family of three sisters. Tragedy strikes her family and sends her world into a tail-spin. Josephine walks away from her faith and everything she once held dear. When the fog of sorrow has lifted, she decides that she needs Jesus in her life, but her poor decision making continues. And then she meets him. Will Josephine continue on the road of bad choices? Will she let him and his guidance tear apart the only family she has left?
Come back June 1st for Inspirational fiction author, Ann Lee Miller.