In the military, Challenge Coins have been exchanged for 50-150 years (depending on who you ask). They bear an organizations insignia or emblem and is carried by its members. In practice, unit commanders will often award a challenge coin to a unit member in recognition of a special achievement. It’s a tradition which Matthew, as a serviceman, and Li-Ping felt was the perfect symbol of the excitement, joys, and challenges they will face as a married couple. A tangible challenge they enlisted their guests to help protect.
They had their own coins minted. One side bearing a tooth, a playful symbol of their shared passion for the dental field, surrounded by the inscription “Honest. Perseverance. Love.” The opposite side adorned by two figures running through olive branches underlined by the word “Glorify” in capital letters. The most important words are etched on their hearts surrounds the olive branches: As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Joshua 24:15. Through the entire reception, Li-Ping and Matthew, presented every guest with a challenge coin. With the passing of each coin they solidified their promise to each other and challenged each guest – newborn, elderly, and photographer alike – to help uphold the sanctity of their marriage.
Li-Ping and Matthew are an incredible example of determination, perseverance, honesty and love. Much of their relationship has been spent apart due to Matt’s deployment. But their connection is concrete. So much you can almost reach right out and touch it. Their faith is a promise that keeps them together when thousands of miles separate them.
Li-Ping and Matt: Thank you for sharing such a special day and special symbol with me. I will bring my challenge coin when I see you in 30 years!