Today marks ten years since Felipe and I began holding holding hands...
I remember the night vividly.
Felipe and I and a group of friends had just returned from an evening church service. We were both living and serving as missionaries at the Lighthouse Community Center in Belo Horizonte, Brazil at the time. Felipe then asked for me to meet him under the amora tree (on the mission grounds) and to bring my guitar.
When I arrived he had me sit on a bench, and he stood before me playing and singing the song, You are so Beautiful to Me. He then continued to declare his interest and affection for me, and officially asked me if I would want to start a relationship with him. I was surprised, shy, and so humbled all at the same time. I had not dated in 11 years, and now to have such a romantic display made for little me was overwhelming to say the least.
The Lord had been preparing me for that moment. I had been praying about being in a relationship with Felipe and knew this conversation was coming.
September 7th, 2008 went down in our history as the beginning of a love story that would later bear fruit, of which our children are most definitely the most precious.
That beautiful September night, we ended our time talking together worshiping under the amora tree. The very song that I was listening to on repeat during that season (as I would pray about my feelings for Felipe), suddenly Felipe began playing on the guitar. We sang the song as a declaration to the Lord, placing Him at the center of our lives and consecrating our relationship to Him, and later we even sang this song on our wedding day.
As Felipe walked me to my dorm that night, he asked to hold my hand. Ten years later, we are still holding hands and facing life together, and our hearts' desire still remains: to bring glory to our faithful God, as we walk hand in hand as husband and wife.
Sometimes our hands our full, holding a baby or the hands of our children, but we still so love to walk hand in hand - together, united, and facing the world as a team.
Today I am extremely thankful to be holding hands for ten years with the love of my life. I pray we have many more years together holding hands, for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part...