Today is Joey’s 31st birthday! I try not to be too sappy in my posts–for your sake and for my privacy. But this time I don’t care. If you don’t want to read about my marriage or my rock star husband, I won’t be offended.

This one’s for you, Joseph Earl.

Slovenia; River Soca

Slovenia; River Soca

My nose gets all sting-y just typing this. Joey rescued me…seriously; and in lots of ways. The Lord used him to remind me of my worth.

I spent a good year soaking up the Word after a difficult relationship in college–literally falling asleep on my Bible. I spent afternoons lying on my back in fields on OBU’s campus, praying and crying and letting the Lord renew my withered spirit. I had forgotten who I was. Jesus paid an expensive ransom for me and I was allowing lies to creep into my soul, whispering rejection and pain…wooing me away from my Father.

Joey is fun. He is light-hearted and easy-going. This man oozes grace. He was a breath of fresh air with messy black hair and an old Ford truck. He brought summer to my winter.

OBU Graduation Day 2005!

OBU Graduation Day 2005! Holy pink.

Once, he and Micah told Taylor and I that they wanted to take us out on a nice date. We dressed up…and as we walked outside our apartment, they dumped a pot of wet spaghetti noodles on our heads. Aside from the pranks, Joey was a bit too much drama for me at first; and I told him so.



He wasn’t perfect then; and hasn’t become so now. Let’s be honest. But he brought to my life such freedom from legalism and release from self-consciousness. He made me laugh and relax. He loved me the way I was and loved me more when I told him who I used to be. He rescued me.



Joey is a man of integrity. He is a protector and one heck of a father. Finn and baby-girl-in-my-tummy are so blessed to have a man like him to call Daddy.


He loves intentionally and views his relationship to his family as an act of worship to God. He’s affectionate and always tells me how beautiful he believes I am–especially now when I need the reminder most.

He is my everyday hero.DSC02422

I love you, Joey. I celebrate you, and am humbled to call you mine. Happy Birthday!


3 thoughts on “Joey

  1. You two are awesome! Thank you for sharing a bit of your beautiful story and for letting you and Joey’s marriage reflect Christ’s love for His church. Love you, Ashley! And happy birthday, Joey!

  2. Happy Birthday to Joey!!! It’s wonderful to hear your love story, it’s a beautiful thing.

    God bless you and your family,

  3. I loved reading that post. You both are our heroes. I love your honesty in what you write. You and Joey are great compliments to each other…give him a big birthday hug from me.

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