I attended an amazing wedding last Friday. The Furry Guy’s cousin married a wonderful young woman. The bride’s family is from India, so the wedding was filled with delightful colors. The bride and groom are both devout followers of Christ, so the wedding itself was a beautiful commitment ceremony. I thought I’d share the things that made this wedding particularly special in my eyes.
The ceremony actually began with the reading of a letter to us, the guests, written by the bride. The letter spoke of her love for the groom and the freedom he allowed her to be herself. The pastor expanded on that theme of freedom when he spoke about marriage. Too often people think that freedom comes from the absence of commitment. That’s not true. When you’re married to someone who loves you, you experience an incomparable freedom to be completely open. There’s a freedom to relax in that.
After the bride’s father had answered that, yes, it was his intent to give his daughter in marriage, the pastor spoke to both sets of parents. He asked if they freely gave their now-adult children over to this new phase of their lives without strings, obligations, or unsolicited advice. (That last one made The Furry Guy and me both smile.) The pastor then addressed us, the guests. He said that in this world too often marriages aren’t supported. He pointed out that when (definitely when, not if) rough times come in a marriage, all too often there aren’t people there to surround the couple, pray for them, and encourage them to work things out. He then asked us to commit to praying for and supporting this marriage.
The pastor told the story of how the bride and groom met. He shared funny anecdotes about their journey from strangers to the altar. During the vows, the pastor included the following: “I promise to forgive you as Christ has already forgiven me.” What a wonderful reminder.
The bride and groom were absolutely beaming as they walked out of that sanctuary as husband and wife.
The reception was amazing. I mentioned that the bride’s family is from India; the food was great. Each household received a gift of a box of Soan Cakes. I’d guess that most of you, like us, had never heard of them. They’re delicious, though very difficult to describe. After we’d all filled our tummies, the dancing started. First came the special dances. These were gifts performed in honor of the occasion. There were three—a girl, two young women, and two young boys. The bride and groom then shared their first dance. The bride danced with her father. The groom danced with his mother. Then we were all welcomed to dance. Yes, the Furry Guy and I bopped to one song before he scurried off to take care of something. While he was gone the groom’s sister grabbed me along with a few others and we all hit the dance floor for one more song.
That’s when I started to fade. Looking at my watch I realized it was about 10:45. Since I’d awakened that day at 3 a.m., I realized that 20 hours was probably my limit. The Furry Guy and I said our goodbyes.
We will always carry the memory of this very special wedding. We are honored to welcome the bride into the family.