The day has finally arrived. The day you thought might never come, most likely along with many others seated in a room full of family and loved ones gathered in support. You’re dressed in white, your palms are sweaty and have a cheesy grin from ear to ear. You peek in the door to see your grandparents seated. You smile thinking of their years of faithfulness to one another knowing the journey hasn’t always been easy. You watch as your nieces gracefully dance down the isle making the cutest spectacle possible. In a moment of light laughter you then pause to watch as your sisters and friends who might as well be sisters walk down the isle to stand beside you just as the always have. As music plays and songs change your stomach leaps as you know this is about to be the song that you’ll walk to meet your husband. I’m going to fall you think. Yep, it’s going to happen.
Two deep breathes, you close the cracked door once more. You look down at your feet and laugh to yourself as even on this day you couldn’t manage heels you are fearing tripping over your two left feet. You begin to shake as anticipation begins to overtake. Then on the small of your back your dad places his hand to get your attention and calm your nerves. Linking his arm with yours He whispers: “are you ready for this?”. You laugh and make a famous inappropriate joke in attempt to keep your emotions contained “is it too late to bolt if I say no?” He chuckles and once more before the door is about to open places his arm on your shoulder where scars of self inflicted wounds that speak of the road that lead to here are visible to the eye. Normally this would make you cringe, maybe pull away. You embrace the moment as his hand rubs your shoulder and gives you one final, knowing squeeze, “It’s time baby, I’m so proud and you’re more beautiful than ever.”
You nod and try not to meet his gaze for fear of losing it and the doors fling wide open; a crowded room arise to their feet. As you round the corner you lock eyes with his goofy grin, quivering lip and tear filled eyes. You can’t wipe away the permanent smile now, even if it’s exhausted from picture taking. Look somewhere else, anywhere you think. You scan the room to countless faces who’ve walked in and out of your life and seen the journey thus far. Held your hand, laughed with you, cried with you, shared in your joy and your pain. Before taking what feels like the longest walk down a never ending isle you just have to glance up at your daddy once more. He’s looking forward but the anticipation and joy in his eyes shines even brighter in a way so different than that of your forever love at the end of the isle. Beaming, proud, and more ready for this day than seemingly anyone else in that room. In his eyes are pride and selfless love. In his arms a steady balance. You aren’t going to fall. Frozen in that moment tears can’t leave your eyes for the joy that fills your spirit. This is it, this is love.
As scriptures are read and vows are taken an image is painted before you. Your heavenly father beaming as the bridegroom becomes one with His church. The angels looking on as they’ve waited for this day to come. Applause erupts as two become one. It’s done. Sanctification is complete, “you’re more beautiful than ever He says, my child welcome home”. Your eyes can’t seem to hold all the flashes of life before you. The sleepless nights, the heartbreaks, the valleys and the mountain tops. The nights you doubted this day was one that you’d share, eternity lost at your guilty blood stained hands. Amongst you are all the faces that soldiered their own journeys and welcome you in. Worship ensues, dancing and embracing as you now become worthy and pure enough to wear the white you’re clothed in by nothing you’ve done well and by nothing you’ve tainted. Already you were His and now you finally meet.
Falling to your feet uncontrollably now nothing else matters but loving and serving your forever love. The scars paint beauty and you wear them proudly as you cling to the moment dancing around in your head. Coming back to the reality before you , overwhelmed with gratitude, you walk into a covenant with a man so together you can shout this redemption song.
I’ll be the first to admit I’ve both been in and been to my fair share of weddings. It’s easy to become cynical as time passes and with each ceremony you’re reminded it’s another one that isn’t your own. You lose sight of the joy, the sanctity, the purpose. You see others jump in too quickly and jump right back out. You catch glimpses of others who dive in with the heart and knowing how truly rewarding it is to enter into a life binding one to another. In singleness you begin to say things like “I’m not going to have a big wedding”, “no need to make a big fuss”. You begin to doubt if it’s something you’ll ever have. Then His words they consume you. They remind you the very reason it is you are single.
I dreamt of my wedding last night and the reality shook me just how much as of late I’m ready to be madly in love and setting out on that journey. But as I dreamt it became very clear to me, I already have my forever love and often I’m caught pursuing it elsewhere. I’m not ready for that union for the sanctity of it needs to be restored in my heart. The image it paints, Christ to His Church, His bride; this is His. Not ours. A gift, a responsibility, a choosing, a painted image of the gospel of Christ. Giving us away to His son. Sacrificially laying His life down and asking us to lay ours before Him.
I believe that He has placed a desire in me and that one day I will walk the isle, or maybe my toes in the sand. Maybe it will be simple, maybe it will be relaxed, and not over done. It will be joyful and reflect our personalities, but there will be a proclamation made. There will be praise, a shout , dance and an adoration: not of me and whomever I get the privilege of loving but of the God man that deserves the day to be made His. When people arise to their feet I pray it not for me or for my roguishly handsome husband, but for the portrait our union will paint.
Dear single heart, take comfort and heart in this tonight. Search out your one true love and let his undying, unyielding embrace overtake you. He has you here, because He has you first and wants your sight set on Him. For such a time as this it’s just you and Him. Forging a bond so strong and unwavering to one day stand before your loved ones and vow to love your spouse as you love Him. The thought shakes me to my core, my heart cant wait and longs to be in a place where my spirit can truly know what it is to joy first and foremost fully in Him. For the day I make that promise to simply be an overflow of the graces and mercies that got us both there. One day two will become one, and the time in between will seem meaningless as we gather. Don’t lose sight, don’t lose hope, don’t settle for less than a man who walks that road with a heart that longs to lead you this way.
For no one ever hates his own flesh but provides and cares for it, just as Christ does for the church, since we are members of His body. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This mystery is profound, but I am talking about Christ and the church. To sum up, each one of you is to love his wife as himself and the wife is to respect her husband.
– Ephesians 5:29-33