Monday, May 5, 2008

"The Crazy Way We Met"

As my fiancé and I were driving around one hot summer afternoon, an argument broke out between us. A few blocks before reaching my home, I asked him to just stop the car so I could get out and walk home.

I needed time alone to think things over.

We had been dating for over 5 years, but things were not going very well in our relationship. New yearnings were stirring up deep inside of me. I was feeling that God was calling me to a deeper commitment to Him, and my fiancé was not feeling the same way at all. Earlier that day we had discussed how much time we should be spending in church, and what a total surrender to Jesus would mean in our relationship. I was ready to completely yield everything to the Lord, but that was just too much for him.

Things were beginning to slip away for us, and I was at a crossroad in my life.

“It’s all for Jesus”, I announced as he pulled the car over to the curb. “Will you join me?” There was no response as I stepped out of the car and began a walk home that would change the rest of my life. Climbing up the long winding stairs up to my bedroom, I knew that God was calling me to yield all to Him. This time I was ready to answer and as I knelt by my bed I whispered this simple prayer.

“Dear Jesus, I want to give you all of my life. I want to live completely for you. Lord, I do not know another Christian so would you please send me a friend to walk along side of me and teach me more about you?”

The next morning my alarm clock went off, and I was awakened by what I thought would be my favorite rock station. It just so happened they had a one-hour Christian show on Saturday mornings called “The Rock That Doesn’t Roll”. As I listened, a song came on called Stephanie that caught my attention. I have a sister named Stephanie, and this song was about a girl who needed Jesus. I was so moved, and was thinking how much I would like my sister to hear this song. My hope was that she would also want to give her all to follow Jesus the way I did the night before.

I finished getting ready and headed off to work feeling like things were really beginning to change.

Once I arrived at my job I could not get this song out of my head. I wanted to buy it for my sister to hear. I had never bought a Christian record before; I didn’t know the name of the album or even the artist. All I knew was the name of the song. Undaunted, I started calling all the secular record stores I was used to dealing with. One after another I kept hearing the same thing, “I’m sorry, I’ve never heard of the song you are looking for.” Ready to give up, I called the very last place I could find in the yellow pages, Logo’s Bookstore. I had never heard of it, but they said they carried records in the ad so I decided to give it a try.

A friendly enough voice answered the phone. I said, “I know you probably can’t help me, in fact, I don’t even know what I’m trying to buy. All I know is I’m looking for a song called Stephanie that I heard played on the radio early this morning.”

“Well, I actually do know what you’re looking for. The artist that recorded that song is Bob Ayala, and I just recently saw him in concert. We have that album here, but you will have to hurry because I am getting ready to close the store."

When I arrived at the store I was greeted with a warm welcome and a smile that melted my heart. I will never forget. The young guy was ready to help me in any way he could. After finding the album I came for, he helped me pick out my first bible and an arm full of other goodies.

The Lord answered my prayer from the night before and sent me that friend I had asked for. Two weeks later on July 4th, Rick asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. Little did I know when I called Logo’s Bookstore that the the guy who answered the phone would become my lifelong partner, the best bible teacher, lover, and the father of our five wonderful sons. Yes I truly am thankful that you kept the store open a little late for me that night in June of 1977 Rick Amato! My life has never been the same. I love you. On August 12th will will celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary.

~Bob Ayala and wife~

Just a footnote. Seven years after we were married, I was able to personally meet Bob Ayala and his wife at a Christian rally in Washington, DC. I shared with him how his song Stephanie was used by God to help me meet the guy who would become my husband! He was thrilled to hear that story of how God used his song to bring us together.

Please Join us today over at Chrysalis to read some exciting love stories! Thanks so much for stopping by today♥


Lynn said...

I think I've heard this story before...what I want to know is how this led to your first date?! Did you just happen to need another record or did he get your phone number and just call? What a wonderful story!

Constance said...

Hi Susan!
Your story moved me to tears as I read it! Like you, it was shortly after my total surrender to Christ that I met my Hub!!! I had vowed to not even look for a man because I hadn't gotten it right and was resolved and resigned to being a single Mom. I told the Lord I'd rather remian single and raise my daughter's in a Godly home and he would HAVE to be their father than to marry someone just so I wouldn't be alone. It wasn't until I had gone through life's experiences and determined to surrender all that I think God must've said,
"Finally, now I can do what I have wanted to do for her right from the start!"

Angela @ Refresh My Soul Blog said...

Love that!

Anonymous said...

awwww lovely! what a hard decision you had to make and yet God blessed you through it!

Jennifer in OR said...

Beautiful, beautiful story! Also, congrats on your first grandson on the way!! The wonder continues... :-)

Peculiar said...

This was so precious and so filled with God's handprints. You can almost see Him walking you through this thing, step by step. He already knew the plan and you joined Him in that without looking back. So neat. I loved your story.

Faith said...

This made me cry! I have tears in my eyes as I type this. It is just beautiful. Isn't our Lord awesome to arrange this? He is sovereign....God bless you and your hubby! (how did you happen to go out with him though? did you keep buying stuff?). just curious!

Anonymous said...

This is one of the most remarkable "first meetings" I've ever read. I marvel at how God brings his children together for His glory. Total surrender to Jesus is the key to much abundance and joy.

I'm sorry though, that you had to break a previous engagement. Perhaps you carry a scar? There's a cost to total surrender too. (((Hugs)))

Thanks for joining us for Marriage Monday, Susan.

Connie Marie said...

Such a cool story! I love how you surrendered your whole life & will to the Lord, even if it meant walking away from your five year relationship with the guy that didn't share your heart. God has blessed you so much!

I sure enjoyed reading your love story.

Judy said...


That is the coolest how we met story!! I love it!!! Thank you for sharing it with us all!!
Judy (Lisa's Mom)

Lori said...

Your story gave me the chills. I thought you were going to say you have been married for a few years now. When you said that you had been married for 30 years, well, I have to say it brought a smile to my face. God is sooo very good.



Sheryl said...


I can't see to type through the tears. What an amazing story of your love and God's love for you.

Not many girls are willing to walk away from a guy to surrender fully to the Lord. God sure rewarded your obedience.

Thank you for sharing that,

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic story. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Melly said...

Oh, wow! I there were tears in my eyes as I read this! Thank you so much for sharing.

M.U.G.G. (mom under God's grace) said...

Something else we have in common...engaged after only a couple of weeks of dating! When you know it's the right thing to do, why waste time getting it done?

What a terrific story! I really enjoyed that!

Di Di

Roo said...

such a great story! thanks for sharing it. what an encouragement.

luvmy4sons said...

Awesome story! So wonderful. God is so good! I enjoyed reading it! 30 years! That is great! That used to see so far away but just celebrated our doesn't see so far away now. Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for visiting my blog - and I really enjoyed your story. I have also bookmarked you - I plan on going back and reading some of your other posts....

lori said...

that has got to be one of the BEST stories I've EVER heard!!! I'm along with the rest of tears! I LOVE THAT kind of a love story!!

You are blessed.....your love, your boys, your grands....your miracles...
ahhhhhh, you made my night!

hugs girl!!
that was WONDERFUL!!! I'm going back to read it AGAIN!

Kelley said...

What a great story!! I get goose bumps just thinking about how God orchestrated your relationship! It is kind of ironic that this would be the theme for Marriage Monday because I have been working on a post for my anniversary. I debated posting it today but I wasn't quite finished with it. Hopefully I can get it ready by Wed., it hasn't been an easy one to write.

Have a fun evening and thanks for the "Happily Ever After" story! I loved it....


April said...

That is an incredible story!! How amazing is our God!
May He continue to bless you!!

Faithful Froggers said...

Oh, I just love your story! It has God's fingerprints all over it! :) How truly blessed you are.

I am right with you needing that flat iron! :) It is the only way my hair will lay straight.

And I am all for introducing my guys to your grand-girls. :) What a match that would be. Although I have to warn you that my guys are in a "we don't like girls" stage. :) I better enjoy it while it lasts . . .

Have a wonderful week, my friend. Thanks so much for sharing your beautiful "love story."
Love & FROG . . .

Stephanie said...

You are one gutsy chick to follow your heart like that and walk away from 5 years in a relationship. That is the most amazing story of how someone met their spouse. I am not just saying that because my name is Stephanie!LOL!

I would love to know what the lyrics are to that song if you have them. Wow, thanks for sharing your story, Susan!

My cup runneth over... said...

What a beautiful story!! I now understand what you meant when you said our stories of meeting our spouses were somewhat similar. I loved reading how quickly God worked in honoring your choice to live fully for him. = ) What a special blessing too, that you were able to meet that artist and tell him how God used him to bring you and your hubby together.
Blessings! = )

MiPa said...

Your story gave me goose bumps to read. What an amazing God we serve to bring you together so uniquely. I marvel at His creativity. Bless you for sharing!

dakotablueeyes said...


Homemanager said...

What a wonderful testimony of the Lord's leading! He really knows how to bless us in such wonderful ways!
Thank you for sharing your story!

Tami Boesiger said...

How can a person deny there is a God after reading a story like that?! Wow.