It hadn’t been planned this way. It wasn’t the dream; it was spontaneous and hurried.
And totally wonderful.
Two sweet friends got married in our backyard Saturday night. The coming together of two people so completely in love and amazingly right for each other that it was a gift to be part of it.
We found out about it at 5:00 Friday night.
The woman had come down with COVID the week before, necessitating the canceling of all their wedding plans, all the providers, and the venue. The guests were informed of the situation, and flights were changed or dropped, trips aborted. The wedding would be postponed, and they’d do a smaller ceremony at some later date.
When you’ve planned on being married, those reversals in plans can be unsettling and disappointing.
Disappointment often leads to creative alternatives.
She got a monoclonal antibody treatment for those who’ve been already immunized. Within a couple of days, she felt better. Being an optimistic and hopeful individual, the natural question was “Why not get married?” Her fiancee was in full agreement.
This was Thursday evening.
Plans were made for my neighbor to host the impromptu ceremony and reception, but Florida weather being what it is, rain was in the forecast. Friday evening we offered to host the wedding in our backyard because we have enough coverage to accommodate those they wanted to invite.
It was amazing to be a part of the communal effort of friends and family to make this a spectacular and joyful experience.
The day had begun with constant showers. As the time for the wedding approached, the rain stopped, and during the vows the sun came out, shining through a break in the clouds.
More than we’d all hoped for.
We were able to celebrate our friends and be with them in this special moment of their commitment to one another.
We were committed to them.
In a world filled with people who are needing help and help isn’t often available, we had a group of people who gathered to make a dream come true.
The Apostle Peter spoke of the commitment we should have for one another.
“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay. God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.” 1 Peter 4:8-10
Cheerfully share your home? Show deep love for one another? Those responses take mental, spiritual, and emotional strength, not a place I often am in my own power.
He gives us the capacity to step outside our comfort zone to love others well, even if it’s inconvenient. He helps us see the needs of others and respond with grace and care. He gives us strength we don’t have on our own.
I saw this in action during the preparations for the wedding. A chance to love on a couple we delight in, to do what wasn’t easy to achieve a communal goal of love and compassion.
Aren’t we all longing for that kind of love?