Thursday, June 5, 2014



     My name is Marisa, and I'm a Communication major at Texas A&M.  I've lived in Texas all my life and chose A&M because it felt like home and still does.  As Josh mentioned in his introductory post, we are both members of the prestigious Cornerstone Program.  It was this program that drew me to A&M and allowed me to make like-minded, life-long friends.  It was through this program that Josh and I met and where are story began.

     Josh told you the story of how we went out dancing as friends and came back as something more.  I'm going to go a little further back...

     Our story began via Facebook.  Yes, FACEBOOK.  You see, Josh, being the go-getter that he is, created a Facebook page for the incoming Cornerstone members.  Of course me and my technologically impaired self couldn't figure out how to join the group, so I had to add Josh on Facebook, bite back my pride, and ask for help.  Being the gentleman that he is, he obliged.  Our first interaction was as follows:

Me: "Hi! Thank you for accepting my friend request. I'm just messaging to ask how I join the Cornerstone Facebook group. I received an email from Dr. Curtis about it, but don't know how to join."

Josh: "I added you. I hope this helps!"

Me: "Thank you! See ya in the fall."

It was fate. Well... that might not be the best example. Let me fast forward a bit more. It was my third day at A&M. A bunch of us Cornerstoners somehow got onto the subject of how much we love Whataburger, and four of us, including Josh and I, decided to make a midnight run for some good ol' fashion burgers (or a chicken sandwich in my case). It was all fun and games until I went to the restroom. I went to wash my hands, and when I returned, Josh and the other two members of our party were nowhere to be found. Seated at the table we had just been sitting at were a bunch of random Aggies. Tough girl that I am, I made my way outside where I found the three of them laughing hysterically. The joke was on them though since I wasn't fazed and one of them had apparently been relegated to the position of purse holder (my purse of course).

That was one of my very first impressions of Josh. The fact that he was crazy enough to make a trek to Whataburger in the middle of the night with a bunch of people he just met convinced me that he was the spontaneous, adventurous type, two qualities that I've always valued in a person.

Fast forwarding a bit more, I remember sitting in a friend's room one night, listening as said friend rambled on about all things philosophy. I was sitting on a bunk bed and Josh on the floor. I had completely tuned out of the conversation long ago, but Josh kept throwing in his comments every now and then. After a while I couldn't help but watch him as he talked. He had (and still has) this crazy, contagious smile that seems to suck you in every time you look at him. On top of that, he has a MEGA contagious laugh that could make even the most stoic of characters laugh right along with him. He has, as my roommate once put it, "the greatest laugh ever".

Now I'll fast forward to the final scene. Josh and two other friends were sitting in my room, waiting for me as I got ready to go out dancing. It was THE night, the one that Josh talked about in his first post. It was the night that truly started it all. I had invited him to go out dancing with me because he seemed like the cool, spontaneous type. What I'll never forget is how I felt while getting ready. In a word, I felt exhilarated. I subconsciously felt that the night was going to memorable, though I didn't know why at the time. Maybe I was just nervous. I mean, there I was getting ready to go out dancing with a guy that I hadn't even known for that long. Talk about taking a leap of faith. As I finished getting ready, I remember looking over at Josh. He was talking to our friends, but his eyes kept drifting back to me. I couldn't decide whether he was checking me out or wondering what kind of girl I was apart from the rest of our posse. Regardless, I was flattered by his attention.

And my gut feeling was right. That night was memorable. It was perfect actually. To this day, Josh still wonders why I asked him to go dancing with me, he still wonders why I leaned back into his arm when we sat down and grabbed his hand on the way back to our dorms. To be honest, I don't know. Something about it all felt right. I felt like I could be myself with Josh. I didn't need to pretend to be someone I wasn't just to impress him or make him like me. He just DID, and that made all the difference.

Okay, so I'm sure you must be wondering why I told you a bunch of random "first impression" stories about Josh. I can't simplify my point any more than by saying that big things often have small beginnings. That was the case with Josh and I. What started out as a random Facebook message and a midnight trip to Whataburger turned into something much, much bigger. I find it amazing that a guy who, just last year, was a complete stranger now means the world to me. It's truly beautiful how God brings about change in our lives. We find ourselves going places we never dreamed we'd go, meeting and falling in love with people we would have never imagined ourselves with.

If I was given the opportunity to change one thing about my past, I wouldn't. Are there things I wish I would've done differently or things I wish I wouldn't have done at all? Most definitely! Yet, I know that the trials I've faced have made me who I am today and have led me to the most amazing people, one of those people being Josh. Had I never chosen A&M, had I never joined the Cornerstone program, had I never invited Josh to go out dancing with me, we probably wouldn't be together today. We wouldn't have the beautiful memories that we've made together over these past nine months of dating. Our lives are so intertwined that we might not even have the same friends we have today had we never met.

In conclusion, I'd just like to say that God knows what He's doing, and He knows what's best for each of us. He ultimately uses all our pain, all our anxiety, and all our stupid decisions for good. All we have to do is lean on Him and rely on His infinite wisdom. In fact, Proverbs 3:5 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding."  Every day, I understand this verse more and more.  I've come to realize, particularly during times of extreme pain, that God is working in my life, stripping away the old and revealing the new.  All I have to do is lean on Him and have faith that He's leading me to better things.  He has blessings prepared for all of us if we choose to let him guide us.

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