Wedding Toast for Raul and Tamara

This past weekend my dear sister-in-law, Tamara, married the wonderful Raul Fernandez. Bryan and I were hoping for them to get together before the two of them even took notice of each other. They are a wonderful couple and it's been so fun to watch there relationship develop and now to celebrate their marriage with them. Bryan and I both had the honor of standing up with them as they pledged their lives to one another and I had the extra honor of being asked to give a toast. As I've posted all my other wedding toasts here I thought would share this one with you all as well. Here it is:

In a quiet forest a beautiful girl walked a path alone. She loved her path, loved the quiet woods around her, loved where she had been and the unknown that stretched before her.

But, she was lonely. Sometimes she thought about going off the path, venturing out on her own, to find a friend, a partner - someone who she could walk with, someone who could help her up when she tripped, someone who would make the dark valleys a little brighter, and the high peaks a little less daunting. But, in the end she never wandered, she always came back to Trusting that the maker of the path knew what lay ahead and knew what was best for her. 

One day her path crossed with the path of a boy. It wasn't the first time her path had crossed paths with a boy, but nothing ever really clicked with those other boys and their paths soon diverged. To all outward appearances, and even to the girl herself, this time seemed basically the same... at least at first.   The day the boy met the girl the boy said "hi" and the girl said "hello". And they pretty much continued on their way. But, the girl knew that the boy's path had not wondered far from her own. Sometimes she could hear him singing, sometimes she would sing back to him. They were sweet songs, but short and really not much to mention.   Then one day their paths crossed again. This time they took notice of one another. This time they stood a while and talked. This time they shared a simple first kiss. They looked out on each path which stretched before them and they could see that their paths would remain close and crossing for at least some time to come.

The boy reached out for the girls hand. The girl drew close and smiled. And on they continued along their paths, each holding the others hand. Sometimes their paths stretched further apart and they had to reach out to keep holding hands. Other times their paths crossed very close and they could whisper to one another in tones only young lovers use. 

One day the boy said, "will you?" and the girl said "yes". Now their paths were so close they were almost indistinguishable...almost.   A short time past and then the boy said, "I do" and the girl said "I do". On that day their separate paths became one path. And they walked on holding hands.   Now the boy would always have someone to help him up when he fell, and the girl would always have someone to help her over the boulders that they might sometimes find in their way. The boy and the girl would have each other to brighten the dark valleys, and make the high peaks seem less daunting. They could walk forward into the unknown trusting that the maker of the path, the one who brought them together, would guide them each step of the way ahead. 

Tamara and Raul, may you walk hand in hand wherever the future takes you. May you lift each other up without judgement when you fall. May you help each other over the hurdles that may stand in your way. May you make the dark valleys brighter for each other and the high peaks less challenging to climb. When the path before you twists and turns out of view, and fog covers each step of the way, may you hold each others hands a little tighter and walk forward bravely, trusting that God walks beside you and will lead you safely onward. 

And now, would you all raise your glasses with me in celebration of a boy finding a girl, in joy of God leading two people together, and in expectation of a love that will reach far into the future. To Tamara and Raul! We love you! 

Rejoicing in the journey - Bethany