Wednesday, October 7, 2009

When a Daughter Gets Married

Mary suggested this week that we pull out the old version of the movie “Father of the Bride…” I nixed the idea. I remember the movie all too well and the trials of the father. I have seen the newer version with Steve Martin. The older version is better but the newer one is good.

We’re heading down the home stretch at the Nichols house as we get ready for Frances to be married to Chris next weekend, October 10th. At this point, as far as I can tell, everything is ready to go- as ready as everything can be for a wedding. You all have been so gracious and understanding of the situation. You all have been generous as you always are. We’re grateful to you. Keep us in your prayers.

Weddings are special times for families. There are so many feelings focused on that one event in a family’s life. There is so much to say and do. Parents are seeing their little boy or girl step up to another level in life. Parents are happy for their children, yes, immensely happy, and yet they are sad. Time and tide wait for no one, the saying goes. Time moves on. You wouldn’t have it any other way. To keep them from this moment would be an injustice.

Brides and Grooms are experiencing the joy of wanting to get on with it- to continue the separation from their parents- to make their own lives together. Surrounded by family and friends, in front of God and everybody they stand at an altar and promise to…well, you know.

It’s different being on this side of things. As a pastor, I have stood on the altar side with countless couples who were making their promises. I have had run-ins with photographers and now, videographers. It’s not a circus, you know, or it’s not supposed to be. One groom told me he wasn’t saying: “Till death do us part…” We were on the way out for the service. I said: “You’ll say it or we stop the ceremony right there.” He said it and as far as I know they’re still married happily.

I’ve been round and round with families about the music that’s allowed in a Christian wedding. A wedding is, like any worship service, a service that gives praise to God. It’s a worship service. So, all the romantic music in the world is not enough to give praise to God. I’ve been a part of weddings small and large and celebrated the beginning of life for so many.

But, it’s different from this side as daddy. It’s good; it’s just different. I’m practicing my one line: “Her mother and I do…” I think I’ve got it.

One last thing to remember: Jesus shows up at weddings. Remember John 2, Jesus shows up at a wedding at Cana of Galilee. Something goes wrong. It most always does. There are so many details. They are out of wine. Jesus has the servants draw water from the well. It’s not water; it’s wine. The host is complimented that he has saved the best until last.

John wants us to see that God has saved the best until last: Jesus. So, on Saturday, as we worship God and Frances moves on, I’ll look around the room at smiling faces and for the one who brings joy to all the important moments of our lives

Dave Nichols

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Thanks for checking out my blog. I'm new to this, as you can probably see. But, I, like you, have convictions and ideas worth sharing. I hope this will be an opportunity to connect with others who are Christian and/or religious. I am happily United Methodist. I am committed to the basic teachings of our church, and to the compassionate outreach to the world.

I hope these pastoral ponderings will generate something in you that is hopeful.

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About Me

A graduate of Newberry College and Duke University Divinity School.  I have served as a pastor in the United Methodist Church since 1975.

The Sea of Galilee

The Sea of Galilee