They say 'love is in the air'. June is often the month for weddings. My wife is playing piano at a wedding this coming weekend. I am performing a wedding the following weekend. As a pastor it becomes my privilege to stand before a man and woman who love each other more than they love themselves and desiring to forever become husband and wife.
There are many smaller moments, leading up to the big moment when the couple will say, “I do.” We have several weeks of planning and pre-marital counseling to prepare, as best as anyone might, for firmly establishing a new family in the world. It’s a crazy whirlwind of activity in those last couple of weeks before. You might say everyone is crazy getting things finished.
I’ve happily gleaned a couple of insights from my vantage point in many wedding services. The moment I realize this might truly be a match made in heaven is when their eyes meet as the bride is escorted into the room. It’s an unmistakable moment in the ceremony. Then as the couple faces each other, holding hands and exchange vows of commitment it becomes obvious even more. This is clearly love, as God intended.
I’ve seen this intense look of love at other times in a person’s eyes. Last weekend we had another baptism. I asked them to make a public statement of their faith in Jesus as their Savior and Lord before their baptism. When they said, “I believe,” it was clearly in their eyes, their love of God.
The Bible uses the love and marriage between a man and a woman to illustrate God’s love for each of us. (Matthew 25:1-46; Ephesians 5:25-27; Isaiah 62:5; Revalation 21:9). It is the foundation of our faith in God. We discover that God is for everybody. Not everybody knows. We have to tell everybody. It’s pretty overwhelming to accept that God loves me. Still, it is true and it is yours to accept and understand.
This weekend we’ll explore part 2 of our summer series Why Church?. We’ll focus on helping others grow faith, and restarting our own, when it stalls out. Growing a faith that enriches our life is like a marriage that enriches the lives of a husband and wife. Weddings are fun and crazy, everybody wants to attend. It’s the 'after-wedding' marriage that is really hard work.
Starting your Jesus story is fun and exciting. It’s what happens next that is harder and more demanding work. Join us this weekend and bring a guest. We’re in this together. Tell them Journey Church is different on purpose. Whatever they imagined it to be, it may not be what they first expected.
Just say, "We want your Church experience to be more like a wedding with celebrations to follow."