“We’ve already been at the lowest points in our lives, and we’ve made it through without using again. Can you imagine what we could do together with Christ in our lives?" says Shelly.
Thirteen years ago, Robert and Shelly collided while rounding a street comer in Denver. She smashed his groceries and he asked for her number. "Of course I gave it to him; he was cute!" says Shelly. They dated for three years and planned to get married. Just weeks before the wedding, Shelly called it off. They were both deep in addiction, and she knew if they stayed together they would destroy their lives.
They went their separate ways, but for 13 years Robert never stopped looking for her: "I used to go to different states looking for her. I would ask people if they had seen her, look for her in the phone book ... I'd search online but I never found anything."
They both used their time apart to fight for their sobriety. In January 2013, Robert wanted a safe place, away from the temptations of living on the streets, and Shelly was experiencing homelessness for the first time. They each sought refuge at Fort Collins Rescue Mission, unknowingly during the same week. Rounding the street comer outside the Mission, they collided yet again.
They began walking the streets of Fort Collins each day, eating meals together at the Mission, getting reacquainted, and falling in love all over again. They marveled that God brought them to the same place. “Our Heavenly Father brought us here. If it wasn't for Him, I know we wouldn't have gotten back together," says Robert.
After a couple of days, Robert texted her while sitting beside her in the library: Honey, will you take my last name? And of course, she said yes.
They finally have the marriage they always wanted—a sober one with a bright future. They are focusing on their Steps to Success program at the Mission, going to budgeting classes and job training sessions, working, and saving money. "The Mission has helped us wonders," says Robert.
At Easter, we celebrate Jesus' resurrection and the greatest love story ever told. Robert and Shelly's reunion is a small reminder of God's ultimate plan for restoration!
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Robert and Shelly's story was featured in the March 2013 issue of Changing Lives titled "A love Resurrected"Download Now