We’ve all see the glow of love that has surrounded Tina Knowles Lawson since she married her current husband, actor Richard Lawson. However, during Sunday’s ESSENCE Empowerment Experience where Lawson was honored with the Inspiring Leadership Award, Beyoncé and Solange’s mom shared that it was a marriage that almost wasn’t. That’s because, initially, her best friend Monica reached out to their longtime friend Richard to help Tina find someone else after her 31-year marriage to Matthew Knowles ended in divorce.
“She called him and asked him to introduce me to some men and I thought, ‘My God, I just seem so desperate,’” she recalled during a keynote conversation with former ESSENCE beauty director and cover editor Mikki Taylor. After asking her what exactly she was seeking in a man and providing him with a carefully thought out list of qualities, Lawson initially asked her what about himself. Knowles Lawson’s response was not exactly the beginnings of the perfect love story. “Me and Monica both said ‘Hell no!’” she said, drawing laughs from the packed house. “That was only because the women like Richard so I was like, ‘Oh no, I don’t want to deal with that.’”
Although she rebuffed his early advance, the friendship began to deepen over the time with Lawson becoming one of her strongest supporters. The foundation built, it was only a matter of time before Knowles Lawson said she realized that it was meant to be. “I was just a good fit and I knew that God sent him,” she said about her husband of just over a year, drawing applause and cheers from the audience.
In fact, Knowles Lawson’s faith played a huge role in not only bringing the two together, but also it also her formulate the list of qualities that made Lawson realize he was the one for her in the first place. “When I went through my divorce, I decided that I was going to pray this time for someone, then God sent me someone,” the beautiful entrepreneur said. “I prayed for the specific qualities I wanted in a man and I wasn’t going to settle for anything less.”
Developing the list wasn’t easy, though. Knowles Lawson said she had to look inward to figure out what exactly she was searching for. “I really didn’t even know what I wanted, so you have to spend some time to try to find out what that is,” she told Taylor. Judging by the way that she gushed about her new husband (at one point she giddily declared, “Plus he’s fine!”), Knowles Lawson’s patience and faith paid off.