Lifestyle & Human Interest

Minutes Before Wedding, Bride Grabs Groom's Shaky Hand, Realizes Truth About Man She's Marrying


After months of preparation, your wedding day dawns. You excitedly prepare for the marriage ceremony, confident you know everything about the heart and character of the person you’re about to commit to for life.

Any engaged couple with a healthy view of reality (take off those rose-colored lenses, folks), will admit that on some level, at some point, hints of doubt about the decision to marry begin to creep in. We find ourselves maybe 98% sure we should marry this person, but what if we are wrong — what if we are making a huge mistake?

Moments before a North Carolina bride named Maggie Earwood walked down the aisle, she found out exactly what type of man she was marrying. Her soon-to-be-husband, U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Caleb Earwood, decided that before any ceremony could take place, there was one thing he needed to take care of.

He needed to pray with his soon-to-be wife. And he needed to do it now.

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The heartfelt moment was captured by wedding photographer Dwayne Schmidt, who admitted he could barely keep his composure amid the weepy eyes and overwhelming love that poured out into the room. “As soon as their hands touched he started getting emotional,” Schmidt recalled of the scene.

Per wedding tradition, the couple refrained from looking at one another before the marriage ceremony. They grasped hands, facing away from each other with eyes closed, while Caleb Earwood asked for God’s blessing over their marriage.

“We were about to take our first steps in life together, and we didn’t want to take a step without it being in God’s will,” Caleb Earwood said in an interview with TODAY. “I prayed to God for my beautiful and intelligent wife that he blessed me with, and the amazing family I was marrying into.”

The moment Maggie grabbed her groom’s hand, she knew exactly what type of marriage she was in for. And her heart was absolutely bursting with joy.

“When I first grabbed his hand, he was shaking really bad, so I knew he was really nervous,” Maggie recalled. “It relieved me to know the person I was getting ready to marry felt the same way about God.”

Maggie couldn’t hold back the tears that welled in her eyes, and neither could the wedding party. “There were no dry eyes in the room,” she expressed.

The photographer and the newlyweds never expected the stunning photo to become an internet sensation, but they certainly don’t mind that it did. “We’re thankful that our picture is able to bless so many people and touch that many hearts,” Caleb smiled.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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