Exactly a year ago, I said yes.
Tears in my eyes. A smile on my lips. His hand in mine. A diamond ring around my finger.
All happened a year ago.
Oh the years seem like days past.
A day ago when I said yes to be his wife.
Three days ago when I first learned to love him.
Five days ago when I started praying for him.
I started praying for him five years ago with a notebook and a pen in my hand.
My first entry was addressed to Him about him. I wrote to God about my future husband. I told Him to teach me to love my husband even before I meet him. To guard my heart, eyes and mind from anyone who might distract me and to keep myself pure and holy for God. Though at times I failed, God was faithful to keep me back on track. I prayed that my first be my last, that I will love one man alone in my lifetime. Then God advised me to do one special thing for my husband – write to him. As faithful as Elizabeth Browning writes to Robert, I wrote to him.
His name unknown. His face unseen. His voice unheard.
It was by faith I prayed for him.
It was by faith I wrote to him.
Little did I know, God was already writing my love story from the moment I said a prayer for him. I met him that very year. I sat in an ENLI 2 class. He was there. The long-haired guy. In my mind, I thought, ‘Mister, you’re no Lancelot. Why grow your hair so long?’
Oblivious to that encounter, I wrote letters after letters in my notebook. I wrote to him about my class, the musical, my History professor, my paper in Linguistics, the dinner I had, my small group, that Friday’s youth service… come to think of it, I wrote to him about EVERYTHING. By faith he was real. I knew it. He’s a promise to be fulfilled. A gift to be given.
I wrote to him without a name.
We became friends, not knowing it was already him.
I continued to write to my future husband, still with no name.
Months after that, emotions started to bud. Still more months, problems arose that kept us apart. It was not the right time.
We prayed. We listened. We waited.
I wrote to my future husband, still with no name.
More months passed, he came back with writings on the sand.
I prayed. I listened. I waited.
Two months after, I said yes to courtship. Courtship with the future in mind.
For the first time I wrote to him with a name. His name.
In courtship, I bought a new notebook. I wrote to him.
His promises that made me laugh. His surprises that made me cry. His faith that made me soar.
It was God’s gift within a gift. Noel taught me to pray like there was no tomorrow. To be sure of what I hope for. To be certain of what I can’t see. Yes, he taught me to have more faith in our God who never fails.
I then asked God about the right time. He just told me to be still. There was peace.
Then the day came. August 1, 2010. A man of faith that he is, he asked me to be his wife. He was on bended knee. He was fumbling for words. His hands cupped. The ring set in a red box.
Little did he know, I already wrote it to him in my notebook.
My secret laughs, longings and loves were all written there. Only one word amongst the many was needed at that moment – Yes.
A month before our wedding, he gave me a scrapbook. Memorabilia from our friendship, courtship and engagement seasons and letters.
He wrote to me.
He was writing to me the day we became friends. God does have humor. He was a promise fulfilled. A prayer answered.
I gave the notebooks to him after our honeymoon.
The letters I wrote to him and he to me are our treasures. But more than that, they are testimonies of God’s love and faithfulness to us, individually and as a couple. They are chapters telling God’s wondrous deeds in our lives. Though only a few among the many. To tell all, I guess no notebook will ever be enough.