Our anniversary is on Saturday and I was going to grace you with a wedding photo, but decided to save you from it instead. Think: BIG dress and BIG hair for the bride. BIG glasses for the groom. Sound attractive? Then you’re not thinking hard enough.
Despite the 80′s fashion and the fact that we look so young and fragile in the pictures, I really did love our wedding. It was beautiful in a lot of conventional ways, but it was also beautiful in this one intangible way: I felt God there. Really. I felt Him right there on the stage as we said the vows we had always dreamed of saying and promised to love, hold and help each other through all the thick and thin of the days that would come.
Do you promise to love, honor and care for each other in poverty and wealth, sickness and health til death parts you? “I do,” said I. “I do,” said my beloved.
And that’s when I heard it. Sweet and soft, in the back corners of my heart: “I do, too,” said the God who loves love. He said ‘yes’ to all the better and worse we would face. He promised to have and hold us. To keep and guide us. To shelter and sustain us for every day of the life we would make together. Knowing that we could never – on our own – actually do all that we were promising to do, He came ready to fill the gaps with grace.
Of all the things that I know God is, the one that is most dear to me today is that He is a God who loves covenants. Not contracts that are signed on the dotted line, but covenants that are etched in the depths of our will. He loves when humans say yes to the long haul, to real relationship and to courageous commitment. It’s not natural to love like that, it’s supernatural and so He blesses it with supernatural resources.
So, today I’m thankful for Steve, but I am even more thankful for the God who saved us from the train wreck we would have created without Him. I’m glad He came to our wedding and the births of our babies and to ordinary days and hard nights and bounced checks and hospital waiting rooms and all the days that have filled the pages of our story. He came, and He brought gifts of grace that remain.