Melissa and Andrew

Image 1 of Melissa and Andrew

How We Met

We met in 2009, but at the time I was in a relationship, and he simply wasn’t interested. Honestly, we didn’t have any chemistry at the time, or even a friendship until much later! I thought he was too quiet, and assumed he was way younger than he actually was. He thought I was too “friendly” and ‘had no depth.’ Ha! Anyway, I was regularly attending the Summit Church in north Mississippi, and him and his family began attending. He was always very quiet, and I don’t believe we even had our first conversation until 2010, or 2011. It was always very ‘surface level’ discussions, and nothing more. Before dating (Young Adults night out):

Image 2 of Melissa and Andrew

It wasn’t until 2015 that he asked me on our first lunch date. In fact, he didn’t initially call it a date, so I had to ask (after the second time he asked me out) if it was in fact “a date.” He assured me it was. :) A month after our first date, I decided to train as a St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital hero for the Chicago Marathon. Andrew decided he would too! He later confessed, “I only signed up to spend time with you.” #swoon. We got to know each other very well over the course of training. If you can run almost every day with someone in the Memphis summer heat, while sweat, snot and everything else is pouring down your face, and they still tell you how beautiful you are, then you know you have something special. I knew the relationship was worth the investment! Since then, we’ve both grown deeper in our walk with God, and with one another. No one is perfect, and we’ve had some challenging moments to overcome, but it has all been led by the Lord. I can honestly say within the first few months I knew I would marry this man, and he says the same for me. :) Everyone has a different story, and start to their relationship… “Our beginning” had been a long time coming, but we both had some growing up to do. Thank God for His timing!

how they asked

It started with a 3 hour road trip to Petit Jean State Park in Arkansas. We went there to celebrate our soon to be 2-year-anniversary, and because we both love hiking, the outdoors and beautiful views! We hiked for several hours; taking in the sights of a beautiful waterfall, huge rocks, caves that have been there for centuries, and the sounds of nature. It was the perfect day, and absolutely the most beautiful weather to boot! We got back to the lodge around dinner time, and ate in their restaurant. Andrew really wanted to get to this area called Stout’s Point to catch the sunset before heading back to Memphis. He was beginning to get antsy, but I assumed it was because he REALLY wanted to catch the sunset. I did too! We rushed out of the restaurant with about 20 minutes to spare.

When we arrived at the point, I noticed that hardly anyone was up there. It was the most BEAUTIFUL evening, and I couldn’t believe we had it almost all to ourselves! There was one family there taking photos, but we essentially had the most romantic setting imaginable. I was taking photos with my phone, and scoping out the area, and Andrew said, “Why don’t we stand over there?” I had an inkling… I was like, “OK… no this isn’t happening.. is it happening?

Image 3 of Melissa and Andrew

Oh.My.Gosh.” We walked over to this gigantic boulder and began to watch the sunset. He took out his old film camera (he loves to develop his own film) and started “taking pictures.” I never head it click… I asked, “Did that even work?” He said “yes” and continued fiddling with it. All of a sudden, I hear “It’s been a wonderful two years with you…” I turn and he is opening the film camera, where he had actually been hiding the ring all day. He got down on one knee… “It’s been a wonderful two years with you… I would be honored for you to spend the rest of your years with me.” Or something similar… (I was in shock).

Image 4 of Melissa and Andrew

I said, YES, and began to hug and kiss him. I heard some cheering, but didn’t pay much attention until he said, “Look.” It was the family taking photos, who he actually hired, and were waiting to take photos of US!

Image 5 of Melissa and Andrew

He set it all up, so perfectly. It was the perfect evening, and most perfect proposal. He truly thought of everything to make this as special, and as memorable as possible. I am such a blessed woman, and thankful for this amazing man of God.

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Special Thanks

Vonda Murdock
 | Photographer