As a pastor, I have presided over many weddings. In fact, this year opened with a wedding of a dear friend of nearly 20 years (the sister of a young man I had trained in the late 1990s). On January 1, 2015, at 5pm on Fort Lauderdale Beach, I had the privilege of marrying Julie Forrester and Greg Mangus. As Julie’s father, Sam, one of my first Christian mentors, walked Julie down the sandy “aisle,” I was reminded of one striking truth: the bride always steals the show.
On this first day of 2015, this was especially true. Julie was dazzling in her beautiful wedding dress as she walked slowly across the sand, her hair flowing gently in the ocean breeze. But there was something more. There was a radiant glow on her face that could only have come from God. You see, Julie knew it was God who brought her and Greg together in the holy covenant of marriage. After meeting and speaking with Greg, I was convinced this was a man who would love her as Christ loves His church. This is truly a marriage made in heaven!
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. (Revelation 19:7)
I find it remarkable that we, the people of God, are described as His bride. To be sure, there is no more intimate relationship in the world than the one between a husband and wife. So when God describes us as His bride, it is as instructive as it is inspiring. God has chosen us to be in an intimate personal relationship with Him that will go on forever and ever. God sought us, caught us, and bought us with His precious blood.
Regardless of where this finds you as you embark on another year of life, if you have placed your trust in Jesus Christ, you can know that He has made you His bride. You may be facing some storms in your life today; storms of . . .
When I perform a wedding, I am always reminded of the storms of singleness that rage in the lives of so many who desire desperately to find that “special someone” with whom to spend the rest of their lives. Just as it was for Julie and Greg, it is a long and winding road to the altar the Almighty had set before them. Yet every step of the way, this wonderful couple looked to God and trusted in His timing . . . even in those moments when they could not trace Him.
Perhaps you’re in the midst of a storm of singleness; if so, let me offer a new perspective that will prove profitable. Keep your marriage to your Master in view and remember just how loved you truly are! Trust God in this process, just as Julie and Greg did, and look to nothing smaller than Jesus to meet you in your place of need.
And remember this: marriage on this side of the grave is momentary; the marriage to your Master will go on forever and ever! In the words of C. S. Lewis, “Every chapter will be better than the one before.”
As a believer, you are the bride of Christ, and He has promised to never leave you nor forsake you. Let that truth set you free!
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!