And all the emotions that came with it.
We remember the laughter, the joy all wild, the way the sun shone soft at just the right moments. We remember the tears. We remember the tingles like silver glitter all alive, rushing like a river when the trumpets played their part. We remember the throbbing thankfulness that came in the course of the moments readily recognized as God's mercies-- because we certainly could not have orchestrated any such. We remember prayer that morning; embraces that evening. We remember counting firsts. So many firsts...
We're still counting.
Today from a mountainside in Rwanda we look across the bay, see a sliver of the country they call home almost 6 months out of the year. And we count the memories of a month brimming with happiness. We count the times we laughed over the stories before bed, howled at the rocks we'd missed in the rice, sacked out on the concrete floor mid-afternoon to get rid of some heat. We remember jungle trails, and trademark african huts and ruts and roads and mud holes. We remember the river crossing in the dugout just for the fun. We remember eating out at the premiere local village fast food destination. For 20 cents a plate. (er, banana leaf.) We remember energetic discussions between siblings five on everything from humility to legislated morality.
And we're still thanking.
Moments tick by and hearts beat steady, and we count down hours and minutes. 9 hours and 56 minutes, from the time of this writing. I know, because I started a timer after they said "I do," and it's still running.
They've almost made it once around the sun.
And after a year, more than ever we are sure:
God's gifts are priceless.
We love you, Luke & Chantée.