I love the atmosphere at weddings. The love, celebration, and the party that typically follows. This last weekend I was able to attend the wedding of a family friend and his beautiful bride. It was a simple and elegant affair. The bride looked stunning, the groom radiated pride and love for his bride. The flower girl was simply adorable. Every one involved did a wonderful job. They had a wonderful video collage that was the right mixture of heartwarming, embarrassing, funny, and so sweet. This lovely affair got me thinking though about how much attention is put on that one day.
All the extra attention that weddings come with can bring out the worst in people. Mother’s can become over bearing trying to live out their dreams through their daughters, forgetting that the daughters have dreams of their own. Mother-in-laws may even try to live vicariously through their son and soon to be daughter-in-law, or perhaps the mother-in-law sees this woman and this day as the sign she is being ‘put to pasture,’ which is more than often not the case. Maybe the bride and groom are really young or one of them has been married multiple times, so there are friends and family making snide remarks and taking bets on how long they will last.
I have heard brides cry about such scenarios. I have even been witness to such sad happenings at weddings. Perhaps we would be wise to remember two pieces of scripture when coming together to celebrate the love of two people.
1: “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29) In other words, “If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all.” Don’t spoil the festive mood and the hope the couple has by saying they will never last. As the friend or family member instead offer your support, wisdom, and most of all love.
2. “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8) Ask yourself is it your wedding? No? Then ask the bride and groom how they would like to celebrate their marriage. It is their day let it be theirs. Are these comments noble, pure, or lovely? Then they have no business at a wedding. (If you have a concern that can not wait by all means find a respectful way to bring it up, but if you can find a way to let it wait then by all means do so.) If we all would just remember to focus on the things this verse suggests we would find much of our strife and contention would ease.
I have also seen where the wedding goes off with out a hitch, and everyone was pleasant to be around but the bride and groom spent so much time planning for the what that first day would look like that they forgot about every day there after. Weddings are great. They are wonderful, but there is so much more to marriage. A wedding is not a happily ever after, but rather a once upon a time. If you can remember that it is only the beginning of your story,then it will help when you hit a bump some time down the road.
***Do you have any advice for those recently married or soon to be married? And perhaps for those who are soon to be attending a wedding?***