September 3, 2016
Not long after Maggie came into our lives, Jeanne and I began praying for the day we all now share. I am sure that Jim and Betty did the same for their son, Jarod. The occasion of the marriage of our daughter and the man to whom she has pledged herself has now arrived.
This good day is a happy time, a celebration, and a solemn commemoration. As you have just heard, two of the BOBs (Brothers of the Bide), Sam and Max have expressed their happiness over the acquisition of their new “big brother”. It should be noted that BOB #3, Charlie, has also rendered an enthusiastic endorsement of his sister’s decision and looks forward to the blessings this relationship will bring to his life.
It is to these testimonies and those already spoken that my wife Jeanne and I now stand, with the chorus of family and friends gathered here in agreement to congratulate Maggie and Jarod and, entrust them to the care of their vows to each other. This is, I suspect, one of those special times in life when so many people can so freely be in singular agreement.
We all wish you well…….
That the joy of your hearts be fulfilled in each other and overflowing to others,
That your “I, Me, and Mine” becomes instead the “Our, We, and Us”,
That the expression of your love for each other yields the fruit that God ordains and,
for which He promises to provide and,
That in all the matters of your lives you remember from whence you came,
Who it is that has given to you His everlastings promises and,
Before Whom, when all is said and done in this world,
You will stand to show yourself a “good and faithful servant.”
To these wishes I would include the admonition to seek wisdom and understanding. Now, perhaps more than any previous time in history you will need the consolation and blessings of the LORD, for these are the days which the Prophets of the Old and New Testaments longed to see. The bad guys have been given the high ground in the spheres of power throughout the world as Biblical Prophecy is being fulfilled in real time. Technology has made this information unavoidable and decisions will be demanded of you. Pray for discernment.
In considering the preeminence of prayer in the life of Christ we see our LORD leading by example; as the Incarnation of the Divine on the Mount of Transfiguration, the newly baptized God-Man fasting alone in the desert for those 40 days, the Lamb of God sweating blood in the Garden, and as the suffering servant abandoned on the cross. Follow Him to those places He would take you to be alone with Him. Make room in the closet of your hearts for the voice of the Holy Spirit. Learn to pray……. without ceasing.
You will also need to learn to pray collectively. Jarod has been ordained as the head of your family and that job description includes the growing weights of responsibility for you, your household, and the name you now carry. Pray that he becomes wise in the things of the LORD.
Some married couples claim they “never fight.” At best this is an unrealistic statement. How can two sinners living in this fallen world not come into conflict? The nature of life and the changes it brings to us (see sanctification) will inevitably create points of friction as one partner moves in a direction or pace different from the other. This is where wisdom must be applied. Learn what roles are fixed and which duties are discretionary. As members of the post-modern generation this may raise challenges for both Jarod and yourself. Have no fear of fighting. Pray that both of you become discerning in the matters of “space” learning when to close on the targets of your hearts and throw your arms around each other or render/receive a figurative “kick in the butt”. Choose rather to seek the mediation of the Holy Spirit to understand emotional warfare and practice both the graceful surrender and the Castle Doctrine.
Your wedding ceremony featured excerpts from the “love chapter” of the Bible. It is an encouraging notion that “loves never fails.” In this promise God gives hope in times of trial and points to faith as your roadmap. A road-sign sure to be seen along this path will remind you that “love holdeth no grudges.” Learn to forgive.
The flow of 1st Corinthians 13 involves spiritual and emotional maturation as well as Pharisaical distinctions. Forgiving the transgressions of others is wisely established if with an acute awareness of your own failures before the Most High God and the abundant mercies He has applied to your own account. In other words, be merciful to others just as God has been merciful to you. But, if hurt you must, be quick to dress and care for the wounds inflicted. Tears can be antiseptic.
All these thoughts mean nothing if not animated by the love which comes from God, and that is what we wish for the both of you. And, if your love be of God, it must grow and endure as the cement that binds your hearts together. Just as the marriage bed must be a sanctuary for the married couple, so too must the repository of trust in the hearts of the beloved. With great jealousy guard your thoughts and your hearts from all intruders, including the pride of your human nature.
You have chosen to begin your walk along the path of life together at a time when your journey will be littered with the debris of a society in collapse. While it is the way of parents to wish for their children a brighter day that may have been their own we cannot but also lament the lay of the land we leave you. However, in spite of this world’s current tribulations we are satisfied, that by God’s grace what we sought to place in your hearts and minds through your education and in our late night prayers and conversations with you these past couple of years, you have been well prepared for what lies ahead. Keep your eyes focused on Jesus and your hope in heaven.
As you shared your wedding vows we were, like many of the witnesses on the side of that hill outside Steamboat Springs, as well as those abiding in the clouds above, praying that God who watches over all, bless you, keep you and protect you. It is to Him that we commit your marriage, your hopes, your love, and your joy.
We love you-
Tyler & Jeanne