In this edition of Sweetheart Stories, Marcie Gray, of Gray Dove Ministries, tells us about how she met – and remet – and married the love of her life, Donovan Curtis.
The Most Unlikely Couple By Marcie Gray
If there had been a class vote, Donovan and I would have been voted “most unlikely couple!” We both attended Los Angeles Baptist High School in California and have known each other since middle school.
We were acquaintances and had many mutual friends, but never dated in school and had lost touch after we graduated. Both of us married and had families, moved out of California and experienced both joy and heartache along life’s journey.
Thanks to social media, we reconnected about 10 years ago. We watched each other’s children grow, prayed for one another and even met for coffee with our families a couple of times over the years.
It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with cancer that Donovan realized that his feelings of devastation were based on more than just concern for my health. There was a spark there that took him by surprise.
When he shared his feelings with me, I was in the midst of raising my teenaged daughters alone while battling cancer, so I friend zoned him. An entire year later, after things settled down a little, I wondered if he had moved back out west, so I reached out to him. I reluctantly agreed to meet him for a “get together,” thinking of how awkward it would be if there was no chemistry and he still had feelings for me.
Donovan went all out! We met on a beautiful spring day, and he surprised me with a picnic in the park under a giant shade tree – complete with a bouquet of flowers. After just a few minutes of visiting, I noticed his adorable Irish grin and sparkling blue eyes and wondered how I had never seen him in that way before. Such a gentleman, yet so hilarious and full of mischief. We knew instantly that God was up to something special.
Both of us had our hearts broken in the past, so there was much to discuss, but after praying about God’s will for our lives, it was evident immediately that He had prepared both of us for such a time as this. What a beautiful thing God did, growing the hearts of childhood friends into a bond that made us best friends instantly.
We made two road trips out to California and back, taking turns driving so we could drive straight through. That amounted to almost 7,000 miles of conversation and prayer time together, as Donovan helped me move my parents from California to Tennessee. The question quickly changed from “if,” to “when” we would tie the knot.
One of our favorite memories was meeting a couple of mutual friends from high school for coffee. They had no idea we dating, so we came up with a plan to surprise them with the news. The problem was, they were deep in conversation about something and when I was supposed to say something outrageously flirtatious toward Donovan, we couldn’t even get their attention. He ended up just planting a big, wet kiss on me, which stopped them in their tracks and they both started yelling and hollering right in the courtyard at Starbucks. Their reaction was hysterical! Sharing with friends from high school has been a lot of fun, and our classmates have all been supportive and happy for us.
Donovan travels with me when I sing and speak at events and is an amazing audio engineer, so I’m spoiled rotten with a husband that supports my ministry in so many practical ways. I did it for many years alone, so I will never take this partnership for granted!
Life takes us on some interesting journeys. Some roads we travel are exciting and fun, others heartbreaking and exhausting. We are so very thankful that God has connected these two California kids as soul mates, and we look forward to many years of serving the Lord together, encouraging people wherever the Lord takes us that God has a terrific sense of humor and when you trust Him with your life, He may very well surprise you in ways you can’t imagine! Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!
Photo credit: Wendy Ivens Photography
Marcie Gray is a singer-songwriter, speaker, writer, and occasionally appears in SGNScoops magazine. Marcie is also the producer of Smoky Mountain Gospel Jubilee.
Do you have a sweetheart story you would like to tell us about? Please write to me at Lorraine@sgnscoops.com