Eric Rogers and Laney Wesley

Eric Rogers and Laney Wesley - Married April 2016

Eric and Laney began dating in April 2014 and were engaged in July 2015. Below is their story of how their dating relationship began.

Eric: I’ve been a disciple for about six and a half years. I was initially very skeptical of the idea of finding a relationship online. I’d tried it a couple times in the world and had always had my heart broken, so when I first got an email from DT Heart & Soul, I deleted it without a second thought. In December of 2012, though, I was talking with one of the brothers. He really encouraged me to look beyond my past hurts and to see DT Heart & Soul as an opportunity to build some friendships and meet new sisters, so I signed up.

I sent out some messages here and there, and before long I got a response from a sister in California. I’m from Springfield, Missouri, and I wondered how much we could really have in common besides God. Little did I know I would soon find out that I had met a truly kindred spirit.

Laney: I have been a disciple for 14 years. When I first heard of DT Heart and Soul I was hesitant to sign up. It was a new concept for me and I didn’t think that I would find a match by that avenue. I recently moved from Los Angeles, California to Sacramento, California. It was a smaller church and I thought maybe I should give DTHS a try. I wanted to have the opportunity to meet brothers and build friendships. I was still hesitant, but after praying and getting my heart surrendered I decided to join. Proverbs 3:5-6 always helps me to trust in God and surrender. I sent a welcome message to all the brothers that were my matches. I knew I had to put myself out there. I received a lot of responses back and built a lot of great friendships. I met Eric on DTHS in January 2013.

We talked for a while and met up a couple of times, once in L.A. in August 2013, and once in Springfield, in October 2013, and things continued to go well.

We continued to talk and build our friendship until April 2014 when Eric traveled to Sacramento. Saturday morning (April 26) we went to the Rose Garden at the State Capitol for a quiet time before hanging out with more friends and family.

Eric: I had a bouquet of roses and a necklace hidden in my bag, so after we finished praying I told her to close her eyes. I took out the roses and in particular there was a red-tipped yellow rose that I singled out to give her first. I told her to open her eyes and then presented it to her, explaining that yellow roses symbolize friendship, and I felt that we had established a strong foundation of friendship, and red tips on a yellow rose symbolize falling in love. Then I showed her the box, but I didn’t open it yet. I owed her a story.

About a year before we’d been discussing whether this was a friendship or if there was a mutual interest in building into something more. At one point I pulled out a necklace that I had purchased a few years earlier, on what I thought had been a whim, but I now think it was a prompting from the spirit of God. I looked at it and I prayed, “God if this relationship is something you want me to pursue, if this has your blessing, let this necklace be a match for her in some way.” So I asked Laney her favorite color, and she said it was light blue. I told her someday I would have to tell her a story.

Back to the Rose Garden on April 26 — I told her it was “time for that story” and recounted the time when I’d asked her favorite color. I opened the box, revealing that the heart-shaped necklace had a mother-of-pearl inlay of light blue.

When I asked her to be my girlfriend she was visibly stunned. I think she said “wow” a couple of times before the word “yes” actually came out, but it was a relief to me. I’d been so nervous I had nearly forgotten to actually ask her after telling the story.

Laney: When Eric asked me to be his girlfriend I was in shock; I felt so humbled that God chose me. I couldn’t believe that God would allow me to date a man after His own heart. I feel extremely happy and grateful to be dating my best friend.

Eric: All through the process of building our friendship, I was getting advice from brothers and sisters that know me, as well as her mother and sister (both disciples), and her friends, disciplers, and leaders. Now that we’re dating, we’ve selected two couples, one here in Springfield, and one there in Sacramento, to be our primary relationship advisers, though we still talk to and get advice from others as well. “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed” — Proverbs 15:22.