March 10, 2006

Don't Seek Alternatives

(Photo from J at her wedding last year)

Its the end of the wedding streak I had for the last 3 weeks - 6 weddings in all, but my schedule only allowed me to attend 4 of them. Following 2 of my previous entries ("When 2 become 1" and "Marriage and the 100th entry"), I thought that this would round up some of my recent thoughts on weddings and marriages.

Of the 4 weddings I've attended, 2 are Christian marriages, 2 are not. Surely the Christian unions encouraged me. I can't comment on 1 of them because I was late for the ceremony (due to work) but I surely enjoyed the fellowship :P

I think it was the first time I heard the Parable of the Lost Son being used to preach at a wedding. Surely it was used as an evangelistic message. I'm encouraged that the couple used the occasion of their wedding, to share the gospel. It was also translated into Mandarin to reach the Chinese folks.

"What is a girl like you xxx, doing with a man like xxx?" Pastor asked at the beginning of his exhortation. In the secular sense, this was probably true. The bride's father was a leader in church and the groom is a new Christian for a couple of years. Pastor went on to say that in our relationships, there will surely be moments of thoughts that goes "What I am doing with a man/woman like him/her?" Well perhaps we should go back and ask what is a holy God doing with sinners like us? And in the Parable of the Lost Son, what is the father doing with his son who has abandoned him and earlier regarded him dead to ask for his share of his estate? But in the end, the father accepted the lost son back into the family despite his earlier rebellion. The father's unconditional love for the son was displayed through him providing the best and the finest for the celebration of his return. Indeed our Father in Heaven would rejoice much over a lost son!!

How much are we like the lost son, to think that we will be better off without our Father in Heaven? We'd rather tell God "Leave me alone! I want to enjoy my life. Life without you is better!" Is that really true? Is life really better without God? God didn't even mind a girl like me - wretched sinner, rebellious against Him. I sat there and was reminded that... yes, a Christian life, striving to live a holy life seems tough. But I'd rather live a life knowing God and His gift of salvation, then a lost life without Him. I thank God for not minding the fact that I was not good enough for the Holy and perfect Him. He not only don't mind me, he love me so much that He gave the life of His son for my sake!!

The couple was reminded that they ought not to seek other alternatives other than God. Their relationship with God is of utmost importance. And then in turn, their marriage covenant with each other is also important. No other alternatives should be entertained. This means in the marriage, questions of "Why did I marry him/her?", "Should I consider this other guy/gal?", "What am I doing with a man/woman like her?" should not be entertained. If only everyone who says their marriage vows at the altar truly understand... probably the lawyers would then be less busy with helping couples with divorce papers...

Nevertheless, I rejoice with the couples... although admittedly I find myself rejoicing a bit more if it were a Christian marriage. I know I should not be bias lah... but really I still thank God for each couple of those weddings that I had attended. What I meant was that I could share the joy of a Christian marriage more... especially when I know and see how God has brought them together in His own unique ways. Sometimes, it just sends a nice warm feeling to my heart and/or my contact lenses would suddenly feel a bit more moistened with tears when I see how 2 different persons can be brought together under Christ, to love each other in Christ and to be willing to live lives together under God's purpose for marriage in their lives on earth. So many unique, beautiful love stories have been weaved.... so will mine be... in God's perfect timing and purpose :)

0 other thoughts:

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