Most girls spend years dreaming of what this day will look like.
I never spent much time dreaming about the color of the flowers or what shade of white my dress would be, but I spent a significant amount of time closing my eyes, trying my best to get a brief glimpse of the man at the other end of the aisle.
This past June 23 I opened my eyes and walked toward the man I had been trying so hard to see. Steven stood before me — strong, handsome and confident. I felt so undeserving in that moment surrounded by over 275 loved ones who were there to support, encourage and pray for the marriage we were about to enter.
My dad on my arm and my new leader only steps away, I was overcome by blessing and humbled by the good gift being given to me. I thought that walk would feel like hours as I would reminisce and reflect on the steps that brought me there. I feared the past would invade me at that point — regrets, last-minute jitters, images of that one time I almost ruined everything, that one day Steven should have realized he deserved better. Instead, the walk felt like a run, my eyes fixed on who was before me and the life before us; everything else disappeared.
What moments of grace and peace, excitement and joy.
We stood there and vowed to love each other forever: in sickness, health, good times, bad times, happy days, sad days, days when we want to trip each other, days when we can’t get enough of each other, and until death parts us. We vowed to serve God together, the primary ambition that brought us to that day.
The day was perfect in every way, and now a little over a month later, it still brings me to tears to think how blessed we are that God not only allowed this union, but has blessed it. I have reflected upon several moments of that day, but as I write this, my walk down the aisle begs to tell a story of God’s grace.
As I walked toward my future husband, everything faded besides what was ahead of us. The past didn’t matter, old qualms disappeared. The only thing that existed between our locked eyes was love, forgiveness, peace and this exuberant excitement for the future like I have never experienced. Although this moment was beautiful, it passed. We have been married a month, and some days there is more between our locked eyes — frustration, anger and that look of “you seriously thought those dishes go there?” We are human, incapable of perfection. We will strive every single day, but those moments will always come and go.
Yet Christ, who is perfect, will always welcome us into His arms, resentment-, anger- and frustration-free. That walk toward Steve on our wedding day will now always carry a reminder of 1) God’s sweet grace that allowed that moment and 2) God’s love that begs me to walk toward Him in that way each and every day, abandoning the past and running toward a future with Him.
Think you have slipped too far out of Christ’s reach? Think again. The Redeemer of the universe is begging you to enter into a marriage with Him. He welcomes you with fervor, that of a groom welcoming his bride. Although we are completely undeserving, He desires us, pursues us and has great plans for our life with Him. Just ask Him.
Not married but want to be? Envision that moment. Squint your eyes, try to see him/her, and spend some time in prayer for that person you cannot yet see. Pray for him/her. Pray he/she is making wise choices and pray that God can keep your hearts, minds and bodies pure until you meet.
Not married and feel like you have made mistakes too great to enter into a blessed union? You have never traveled too far out of the reach of God’s grace. You can never back away into a corner dark enough where God’s light cannot shine. He is there; He is waiting and desiring your return. Pray for redemption, purity and peace. God restores. Also pray for your future spouse that he/she may know God’s grace. No relationship begins in perfection, but God can redeem, purify and make beautiful out of what we have ruined.
I wanted to share a quick recap of my special day. Check out the video below and enjoy!