faith Feature Marriage

The Riveras

THANKFULNESS & FAITH: Life, Friendship, Courtship, Marriage, Pregnancy, Family

From This Moment On / You’re Still the One, a Shania Twain’s Medley by Caleb and Kelsey was the song that Andrew and Evelyn danced to on their wedding day. …

From the moment Andrew saw Evelyn he was attracted to her …..and though Evelyn’s attraction was one that grew over time, the more she got to know him. It seems clear that they are both today saying, You are still the one…. the one that I choose to be by my side, the one I choose to protect, the one I choose to serve, the one I choose to produce another life with… The one I choose to raise a child with…… The one I choose to be Thankful with…

The Rivera’s, Andrew and Evelyn, are two young individuals thankful for their lives before each other, their lives as they developed a friendship, which became a courtship, that transformed into a marriage…. Andrew and Evelyn, two people who recently celebrated two years of marriage and now the birth of their first child, a baby girl, have much to be thankful for…..

Get the heartfelt account from their own words:

The Beginning

  • How did you meet each other?

Evelyn and I met our Freshman year of High school at Zion Benton in our Freshman English class.”

  • Were you both instantly attracted to each other or was it an attraction that grew? 

Andrew: “I instantly was attracted to Evelyn because I thought she looked great, but once we started talking my attraction grew from just being physical to also emotional.”

Evelyn: “It was an attraction that grew. The more I got to know Andrew the more the attraction grew.”

  • How many years were you friends before you both began your courting relationship? 

We were friends for 3 years before we began our courtship.”

  • What is one thing you are each thankful for about your friendship prior to your relationship changing to a courtship?

Andrew: I’m thankful that we were friends before we started courting because it allowed us to really get to know each other and be ourselves.”

Evelyn: “I was thankful that we both had a solid foundation in our faith because that allowed us to start on the right path in our courting relationship.”

  • Which one of you shared your feelings first about how you felt about the other person? What did you say? How did the other person respond?

 “I shared my feelings first with Evelyn. I just told Evelyn how I felt about her, I was honest. I told her that I thought she was a great woman and that I wanted to continue to get to know her and date her.”

  • How many years did you court each other before getting engaged?

            “We courted 4 years before we were engaged.” 

  • What is one thing each of you remain thankful for about your courtship?

We both agree that we are thankful for our friendship because we never lost it. Our friendship is important because it was a part of the foundation of our relationship. Friendship will help get you through some of the hard times.” 

  • How long were you engaged before getting married? How did you both make the decision on how long your engagement would be?

We were engaged for 11 months before getting married. We honestly did not want to wait longer than a year because we were looking forward to being married to each other.”

  • What is one thing you are each thankful for while you were engaged?

We are both grateful for a community of believers that surrounded us and encouraged us to keep going forward even in the midst of adversity.”

The Wedding Day & Marriage Thus Far

  • Did you have a theme for your wedding? If so, what was it? Why did you both choose that theme?

We really didn’t have a theme, we just chose what we liked.”

  • What were the colors of your wedding? Why did you both choose those colors?

Burgundy and Gold were the colors for our wedding. I chose those because I really liked fall colors.”

  • What are two things that each of you are the most thankful for about your wedding day?

Andrew: “I am thankful that we had the opportunity to lead our wedding guest in a few songs of worship and that we became one in Christ.”

Evelyn: “I am thankful that I had both of my parents there to walk me down the aisle. I am also thankful that God gave us a beautiful 60 degree day for our wedding in the end of November because the next day there was a huge snow storm!

  • How many years have you been married?

We have been married for two years!

  • Do you have a foundation scripture for your marriage? If yes, what is it? Why did you choose it?

We honestly never thought about having a foundation scripture for our marriage because there are several scriptures that we hold dearly to our marriage.”

  • In the couple years that you have been married, what are two things that you are most thankful for?

We are most thankful for God’s faithfulness and mercy. He is constant and has always made a way when it seems like there is no way. We are thankful for his mercy because we don’t deserve any of the blessings he has given us.”

Marriage & Pregnancy

  • As a young fairly new married couple expecting your first child, how has the pregnancy affected your marriage and preparing for the baby to arrive?

The pregnancy caused us to become more sensitive to one another, to be more effective communicators and to be more protective of our nuclear family.” 

  • What advice would you give a newly married couple like yourselves?

Keep God at the Center of your marriage no matter what because he is the glue that will keep you together when times are hard and you feel like giving up.” 

  • What advice would each of you give to a newly married couple expecting a baby based on what you each have recently learned?

We would encourage young couples to save up as much money as they can  because there will be unexpected expenses. We would also encourage them to work on becoming a better version of themselves. This is important because we are our children’s biggest influence.”

  • What are two things you each have learned about yourselves since the pregnancy?

Andrew: “I have learned that I am very protective and that at the end of the day family and God are all that matter.”

Evelyn: “I have learned how beautiful life is and how to appreciate my parents more for all they have done for me when I was a child.” 

  • What are two things you are looking forward to about being new parents? What are two things each of you are scared about becoming new parents? What are two thinks you are most thankful about becoming new parents?

Andrew: “I was scared of not being able to protect my wife and daughter. This fear was existent because I was away with the military for the last 6 months of her pregnancy. I was  looking forward to holding my daughter in my arms and just loving her. I am thankful that God has trusted me with the opportunity to raise our daughter.” 

Evelyn: “I was scared of being excited about the opportunity of being a parent and end up losing the baby. I was looking forward to seeing what she looked like and her personality develop. I am thankful that God allowed me to experience life inside of me.” 

  • What has the hardest challenges been for each of you while you were only friends, during your courtship, being married and now pregnancy: expecting a baby? What did you learn from each and are you thankful for each of those lessons? If yes, why? If no, why not? If you both like, each of you may share from a Christian perspective and outside of being Christians. 

The hardest part of our marriage was being separated from each other during the last six months of the pregnancy. We really had to trust God in the midst of our fears. The hardest part of our pregnancy was the fact that Evelyn had to give birth alone and that we were not able to share the moment of our daughters birth together.”

  • How has your belief in God affected you both individually as a husband and as a wife? How has that same belief affected you as a couple?

Andrew: “My faith has caused me to mature as a man and die to my flesh so i can become the husband and father that my family needs.”

Evelyn: “My faith in God has kept me solid to stand on Gods truth about our marriage and what he says about me.”

  • How will you implement your belief in God as parents?

We will implement our belief in God as parents by living out the word of God and being the example that our daughter needs.”

  • Share a fun fact or something interesting about each of your childhood and how that as affected your marriage now.

When we both think about our childhoods, we both think about the fun vacations that we went on with our families and how we want to continue those traditions with our family.”

  • Share a fun fact or something interesting about your wife that you are thankful for. Share a fun fact or something interesting about your husband that you are thankful for. One you each discovered since you have been married. 

Andrew: “I am thankful for my wife’s heart. She is very loving and has a servant’s heart. She is out of my league, but I’m so glad God blessed me with her.”

Evelyn: “I am thankful for how protective my husband is because he makes me feel safe.” 

  • In this time of thanksgiving, what message do each of you have for each other and for others?

Our message to others would be to be thankful for your family and friends and to not take life for granted. Say I love you every chance you get because tomorrow is promised to no man.”

  • Are there any other things you each would like to share about each other, your marriage, pregnancy, your faith in God and how you live as Christians?

In regards to marriage we have learned to don’t forget to laugh, never forget the why, and enjoy the simple things in life.”

Don’t forget to leave your comments below.

By Cynthia Lincke

I'm WOMAN: christian, wife, mother, licensed clinical social worker, educator, author, entrepreneur, philanthropist, aspired entrepreneur philanthropist, I have the unique task of looking through various lenses, affording me numerous experiences, through these various positions.

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