Funerals & Weddings. Weddings and funerals. These life-changers gather in family and friends in ways that birthdays, holidays, and high school graduations only dream of. The one celebrates a life now finished (on this side of eternity); the other celebrates a life just beginning. Mysteriously, ‘two become one.’ A vow, a kiss, a toast (and, in our family a whole lotta dancing!) mark the unions of our children. These are days not to be missed. Just such a day will dawn in less than seventy-two hours. My baby is getting married.
Wedding days whisper to us, calling up tender memories of parents whose passing from this world means that fewer feet will grace the dance floor (and, O! my dad could cut a rug), though surely they are already seated at the Banquet table. Wedding days sing to us, with the sweetest strains of ‘The Lord’s Prayer,’ ‘Amazing Grace,’ ‘Great Is Thy Faithfulness,’ and ‘Be Thou My Vision’ echoing through our hearts. Wedding days shriek with joy, as a bride at her most beautiful meets the adoring gaze of her groom for the first time that day. The moment etches itself on the ‘witnesses, gathered in this place.’
Wedding days stir our hearts with laughter, cloud our eyes with tears — make us glad to be alive. The perfect image of the ‘reason for the hope that we have.’
But in the stillness of that morning just three days hence, when I will remember the quiet hours when the tiniest of hands grasped mine, and hear again the mother’s promise that she will be loving him, ‘always,’ I will realize,
Wedding days bring us to our knees. Another reminder that ‘life is a casting off’ alongside a sneak peak at the wonders of Heaven. A heart will crack, ever so slightly, at the ‘casting off.’ But in grace, so amazing, that crack widens, letting in a beautiful girl who captured my son’s heart and made it hers. I loved him first, but she will love him better.
Wedding days remind us, ‘the best is yet to be,’ as two young hearts say ‘grow old along with me.’ In the span of a heart beat the days turn to years, and the hand that once held mine will grasp hers. My baby is getting married.