Destiny has been fulfilled for singer Michelle Williams as she is now engaged to her love.
PEOPLE revealed exclusively that the Destiny’s Child songstress and pastor Chad Johnson are set to tie the knot after a year-long relationship.
Williams happily shared her engagement news, saying she “could not contain this [news] any longer” after Johnson, 40, popped the question on March 21st.
The two met in March 2017 at an Arizona spiritual retreat run by Johnson. The experience was not only one of healing but one that introduced a love she’d never known.
“I was in a horrible, dark place,” she said. “I just needed to go somewhere where I could get a message of hope and restoration, rejuvenation — get connected to God.”
Johnson added: “When we met, both of us were in very similar places on a personal level. Michelle was coming off the heels of a really bad relationship, and I was just in a place of despair as well.”
Following the retreat, Johnson and Williams developed a friendly rapport before he tried to take things to the next level but feared he’d ruined the beginning of a romantic relationship between them before it even started.
“I tried to roll in with some mac daddy game — and I tried to flirt a little bit and said something like, ‘How about you and I connect sometime?’ And right away, she texted right back with one word and six question marks behind it: ‘Connect??????'” he said. “I thought she had dissed me. So I was embarrassed, and I didn’t reach back out to her because I thought I’d ruined the friendship.”
But that simple text exchange became the start of their modern love story.
The couple got engaged at a California hotel over a dinner that had more surprises than Williams expected.
“We were replaying the whole text message, recreating the moment,” Johnson revealed. “I was like, ‘Hey, what about if you and me connected?’ She sent me back a text saying, ‘I’ll check my availability.’ And I signaled over to the waiter, and she brought out the iPad and played the video of me being on the proposal tour.”
Prior to asking for her hand in marriage, the former sports chaplain for the LA Dodgers and the Pittsburgh Steelers traveled to the singer’s Rockford, Illinois hometown to ask for her family’s blessing, and he videotaped the entire experience.
“I started weeping and wailing when I see all these special people. Towards the end of the video, something in my head said, ‘Pull yourself together! He’s about to propose! Stop all this crying!’,” the singer revealed.
The couple doesn’t plan on being engaged very long. In fact, they have their eye on a summer wedding that is small, intimate, private but very special.
Williams hopes that her love story with Johnson will be a testimony to others to not give up on the dreams of your heart.
“Don’t lose hope in love,” said Williams. “I do think you should not focus so much that if you’re not in love that you get depressed about it. I was in a place where I was like, I’m just going to focus on my career and my family and just keep it moving. I started taking myself out; I started traveling by myself, to the point where I loved being by myself.”
She continued, “Just don’t lose hope. But definitely, be doing what you can do to make yourself a better person for the person that possibly is on the way for the way for you.”
Congratulations, Michelle and Chad!