Sunday, June 13, 2010

A Pastor's Eye View

Yesterday afternoon I officiated at my 'umpteenth' wedding. (Yes, I've officially lost track now!) And although I cannot remember the exact number off the top of my head, I can tell you that it was a very special wedding for me as an officiant. The couple that married was not only made up of former students at the university where I teach, but the groom was the eldest son of one of my closest friends. Additionally, I had worked with the couple for over a year on premarital counseling. The two young adults are passionate about their faith in God and the success of their marriage. They wanted to get it 'right'.

For most people, a wedding is where you celebrate the union of two people into one, officially. The ceremony is usually held in a church building and followed by a reception - either modest or extravagant. You put on a suit or a dress, purchase a gift off of a registry and celebrate, with the couple, their new union.

A pastor's eye view is a little different. A wedding is a capstone event - the end of a long process of preparation and the birthing event of a new phase in a relationship. If understood properly, a wedding is a covenant event, where two people unite, with God, witnessed by many of their closest friends and family members. It is a transitional event, where new family ties are born and old family ties are changed. Indeed, a new family is born out of two others.

I never cease to be amazed at weddings. I love how a bride looks at a groom. How a groom stands amazed at the beauty of the bride. They are both full of youth and joy. Then there is the wedding party - it is interesting to see how these people represent the loves, concerns and interests of the bride and groom. And oh how the bridal attendants smile and the groomsmen fidget! Although most wedding ceremonies last between 15 and 45 minutes, they usually pass in a blink of an eye for the participants. But what an amazing moment in time it is.

As a pastor, I see so many beautiful things in a wedding, most of them having nothing to do with hair styles, dresses, tuxedos or decorations. I see God do something special in two people. I do my best to prepare these two people for the this covenant and to spend the rest of their lives together understanding that the two become one flesh in a relationship sanctified and indwelled by the living God. What a fortunate man I am to be able to participate in such a beginning for two people!

So Thank you:

James and Connie
Josh and Amanda
Jacob and Olivia
Nick and Tracie
Paul and Heather
Jeff and Bethany
Matt and Jamie
Chris and Bridget
Brian and Lori
Nathan and Shannon
Nick and Jenny
Gabe and Megan
Joe and Kim
Kirk and Chris
Troy and Jennifer
David and Chamar
Troy and Stephanie
Chris and Tinnell
Frank and Teresa
Bob and Kerstin
John and Patricia
Preston and Norma
Dallen and Christina
Michael and Salwati

and the many others who have allowed me to be a part of their special day.

1 comment: