August and Genesis
How We Met
Auggie and I met our freshmen year at Cornell University through CRU, a Christian fellowship on campus. Our friendship started when we were placed next to each other on a car ride to Seneca Lake for the annual Upstate Fall Getaway. I, Genesis, was not at all attracted to Auggie at this point but figured he would make a really good friend and he seemed like a super sweet guy. After camp, we would see each other often through CRU and the more we each got involved in leadership positions within the college ministry, the more time we spent together. Without knowing it, while drawing closer to God, we were also drawing closer to one another. By second semester sophomore year, we were talking and hanging out almost every day and somehow, I would still vent to Auggie about my guy troubles and called him “my brother,” as that is what I saw him as.
I would wish other guys were as amazing as Auggie and easily realized there was none like him. The next summer, somehow, someway, God opened my eyes to see Auggie not only as a brother-in-Christ or as a best-friend but as my life-partner, as the man that would lead me closer to Him for the rest of our lives. Fortunately, Auggie and I have a mutual friend who played a vital role in both of our spiritual growths so I went to him to ask for counsel. Apparently, Auggie had been waiting for me to come to this realization for a long time so shortly after, he asked if I would prayerfully consider a relationship with him. 2 years later, a few days before graduation, he proposed.
How He Asked
Auggie broke the proposal up into 3 parts: “You + Me,” “You + Me + Them,” “You + Me + God.”
You’ll find the cards he wrote for each part below.
1. You + Me
As you embark on this small journey towards meeting together with me and God, I wanted to take you first through our past. Among the trees, I have lined up photos of us throughout our relationship. Each one an unforgettable moment, where our eyes are never closing and time’s forever frozen still (I hope you get the reference). Times filled with such joy and such emotion., Times that were so hard that we thought we couldn’t bear them. Each photo has a story and each story makes a lifetime. From our first date in Ezra’s tunnel at the waterfall to the moment where I will soon stand before you – each moment, God was with us through it all. Each moment, God provided for us. Each time, when we turned away, God reminded us to look back at Him, the One who knows all loves all, and cares for all. But of all the photos hanging, these are just a few of the thousands of moments that I will always remember sharing with you for the rest of my life.
P.S. Now, take the next step of your journey to the wooden house to your right.”
2. You + Me + Them
The next step of this journey wouldn’t have been possible without the love, support, and care from all the people in our life that have been there with us throughout it all. Countless friends and family have played such a crucial role in growing our relationship. God has brought countless people into our lives to point us back to Him. God used these people to show us His way, to strengthen us when we were at the point of breaking, and to point out our flaws so that we could grow closer to Him. These are people who we have become best friends with, who will be there for us for the rest of our lives – people from Arizona, from Pennsylvania, from internships, from Ithaca, and from Cornell. God is such a Provider. Hanging are letters from people who couldn’t physically be here with us today, but who have been such a blessing in both of our lives. Take some time to read the letters from your family on the bench. You can read the other ones later. After you finish reading these letters, continue down the gravel path towards the walkway.
3. You + Me + God
In the final step of this journey, you will encounter the most important Person in both of our lives, without whom life would not be possible. Who is this but our Creator, our Redeemer, our eternal Father, our Provider, God, who has always been there molding our relationship together in his hands? Who has been here even when we thought He wasn’t, through the good times and the painful times. This is not about us, Genesis. This bond, this thing where two become one, this is about the God of the universe who sent his Son down for us, for our brokenness, in order that WE can spend eternity with Him. This is about someone who can take two broken people and bring us together and make us new. I will never be your savior, I will never be your king, I will mess up, but God never will. As we take these next steps in life, always remember that we can’t do it on our own, but God always got us. In the Bible, I have chosen a few of the thousands of God-breathed verses* that stood out through our relationship. Read them, reflect on them, and remember the faithfulness of God through it all. When you have finished reading them, take some time for personal prayer. Take some time to thank God for everything, and for how He has brought us together, and then take your final steps down the path.
I love you,
* Bible Verses:
Matthew 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Your verse, the one that your grandma used to describe you. Genesis, YOU are the light of the world, the Light is given to you by Jesus. I always remember this because of how bright your light shines to all those around the world.
Philippians 4:6-7 “6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
The verse that I always remind us of. The one that should characterize our lives and relationships. No matter what happens in the future Genesis, God is ALWAYS here. Don’t be anxious because we have an eternal God who surpasses all understanding who will guard you and I for the rest of our lives, in Christ Jesus.
Psalm 91 “”
The verse that represents our lives. How God will always be our refuge, and all we have to do is acknowledge His name. A verse to remind us that whenever we feel we have been abandoned by everyone around us, God has, is and always will be standing there right next to us holding us.
The Proposal, The Final Question:
What August said…
“Genesis when I was thinking of the words to say to you in this very moment, I couldn’t explain to you the joy that I felt when I recognized that I am going to spend the rest of my life with you. I am ready to tie this threefold cord together with you and Jesus, and call you my wife. I want to continue to pursue you, to see everyday how God is growing you and chiseling you into the magnificent, priceless sculpture you will be when we meet with Him together face-to-face. I am going to stand beside you in the battle, to go out into the world with Jesus by our side turning souls to Him. Genesis my heart longs for the days when I get to wake up next to you, to see your face each and every morning. That beautiful face. To go to bed and know you will always be by my side through the good times and the hard times. I am looking forward to the days of getting to serve you. To making breakfast and dinner together, to going on adventures, to traveling the world, to dancing like nobody’s watching, to crying at Hallmark movies, to laughing together for hours on end because I know my heart is safe with you. God has brought your soul to me to spend this life with. I commit to always loving you, to always wanting the best for you, to leading our future family, to being a faithful husband, to helping to grow you to be more like Jesus, to standing beside you when the times get tough, and to always point you back to him, because our relationship, our love, our sacrifice, and our service would not be possible without the one who made it all possible and did it first. And that person is Jesus. I will never be Jesus, but I aspire every day to live a life that mirrors him to you in every way. I am looking forward to all the adventures, trials, and the path that God has for us. Because after almost 2 years God has finally brought our paths together, and I can now hold your hand, look forward to the Light in the front of our path, and know that I will have my best friend and love of my life walking alongside me until we are united together with Jesus in Heaven. Genesis Arlette Miranda Soto, will you marry me?”
What Genesis said…