1: The Beginning
3: Dear God, Thank you for March 7th, 2010. I praise you for the beautiful story you started to reveal to Scott and I on that wonderful Sunday.
6: S | M | Roswell, NM
7: Austin, TX
8: Texas Ranching Heritage Center
9: Geo Jill and Si Coe | Murder Mystery Dinner
10: Carol of Lights
11: Christmas Connection
13: Preteen 1-miler
14: When God writes a love story... If you know anything about Marianne, you probably know she doesn't fall for pranks very easily. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have tried to surprise her with something and she had already figured out my plans. So when I decided to propose to her I started thinking about how to do it almost 12 months in advance. Before I begin I want to first make this known: I praise God wholly for this proposal. May all the glory be to Him who led me to the heart of Marianne and made my paths straight. It is the Lord who has given me all my ideas, and sustains all things. Forever and ever. On July 21st, God revealed to me an idea for a date to take Marianne on. As I thought about it further, I realized this "idea" was something bigger than just a "date." This idea would be how I asked the only woman I ever fell in love with to marry me. Of course Marianne already had her own assumptions that I would be asking her soon. And I of course caused this by pretending several times to propose to her (nothing serious! just getting on one knee to tie my shoe, or asking if she would "carry" me). Saturday night, July 23rd, my three week proposal began.
15: July 24th, Sunday morning- I picked up Marianne before church at 7:30 AM and drove her to the Rooftop Cafe. When Marianne saw the sign she was so excited to get breakfast at the restaurant we ate at on our first date almost one year and a half ago. I grabbed my Bible as we exited my car, within it held the first piece of my proposal pie. As I prayed for our early morning breakfast i opened my Bible to take out a picture of Marianne and I from the night I asked her to be my girlfriend and laid it in front of her. Upon opening her eyes, Marianne looked both confused and excited. I told her that picture is very important and she needed to keep it safe! Marianne laughing at my zeal delicately placed the picture of us in her purse.
16: July 31st, Sunday morning- I picked up Marianne before church at 8 AM and drove her toward Texas Tech University. I tried to fool her about where we were going but sure enough, she knew we were headed toward Memorial Circle. | Sitting on the edge of the fountain eating free Krispy Kreme donuts (Marianne's favorite) we remembered how a little over a year ago it was this place that God renewed our relationship and led us closer to Him. | As we prayed I gave her a white candle stick. Once again I told her the candle stick is very important and she needed to keep it safe!
17: At this point Marianne was starting to get suspicious. But praise God, because the best part of the plan was about to begin. August 6th, Saturday- Marianne's family was on the road driving toward Lubbock without Marianne knowing. Twenty-three other friends of Marianne from the church were organized and prepared for Sunday morning. All the computers were ready. All the decorations planned. All the pieces finally coming together. August 7th, Sunday morning- It was exactly one year and a half since the day I had met Marianne Quintero. An effervescent heart from Roswell, New Mexico. She sat with poise and grace that captivated my heart and soul. Bewitched by her presence my heart fell enraptured by the feelings washing over me like a soothing bath. And today I would ask for her hand in marriage. I picked up Marianne before church at 7:11 AM. I remember it so well because when I am late Marianne never ceases to remind me how I am the "woman" in the relationship because she always has to wait on me (it might be a little true...). When I saw how beautiful Marianne looked that morning it was good thing I didn't have the ring because I would have proposed to her right there in the driveway.
18: Our first stop, the Stripes Gas Station. Marianne was absolutely puzzled, wondering why we were going into a gas station on our Sunday date (you could have thrown a million dollars into the air and people still would have been enamored with the beauty of Marianne as she entered the convenience store). Marianne grabbed strawberry, and chocolate milk, I went for the pack of Hostess zingers, we obviously had this routine to a T! I then drove her to Ransom Canyon to watch the Sun rise. This was where I first asked Marianne to go out with me. You could see in her eyes that she knew it was here upon the rim of this gorgeous canyon, in quiet serenity that Scott Godinez was going to propose to her. She couldn't have been more wrong. As a matter of fact I planned for her to think I would propose to her that morning, which she would find out was true, just about 30 minutes later than she expected. While I sat with Marianne staring at the sky catch on fire with the red and orange hues of the morning sun I asked Marianne if she had kept the picture and candlestick with her. When she showed them both to me, I handed her a single red rose.
19: Slowly walking back toward my car, Marianne looked like a little that had just found out the Santa Claus at the mall isn't real. I tried to hide my smile as I sent a message to my friend at the church that we were on our way. While Marianne and I were enjoying our date, about thirty people were working together back at the Church to prepare the last part of the proposal. The flowers were set. The candles were lit. The computers were on and connected. Every single part of the plan was working without flaw. Praying to myself for God to work everything to His will and not mine, I led Marianne up the stairs and past the room in the church where Marianne and I usually go first. At this point Marianne became curious again but now it didn't matter. I opened the door to the same room where I had first told Marianne I loved her. The room where Marianne and I learned to work together in the church. The room where I would ask her to marry me.
20: With rows of brightly assorted gerber daisies and over fifty teacup candles illuminating the path Marianne seemed to hold her breath for what seemed an eternity. I led her through the flowery aisle to a small wrought-iron table and chairs with an arbor wrapped in white christmas lights arching above our heads. Upon the table were four items. An empty picture frame. A candle holder. A vase. And a Bible. I asked Marianne to pass me the three symbolic gifts I had given to her throughout our Sunday morning dates and I placed each one in its proper place. With the slightest tear in her eye I began to paint my love for Marianne with my every word. When the time came for my bended knee to touch the ground I reached for the Bible and opened it, revealing a small wooden box centered inside the pages of the Bible. Taking the ring from the box I asked the woman I love to marry me. And she said "Thank you."
21: We both laughed and hugged each other over and over. To this day I still tease her about saying "thank you" after I proposed. When we left the room hand-in-hand I led Marianne to the next surprise. I opened the doors to the first room she entered as an engaged woman with her entire family, and over twenty-five church friends all yelling their congratulations as she walked in. And her friends that could not come, were rolled out on five laptops with Skype, so they could all talk to Marianne as well. As I sit here writing this a tear still comes to my eye as my heart is overwhelmed by the greatness of our God. I could never have authored a story as beautiful as the one Marianne and I have been blessed with. May all praise be to the Lord most high!