We had decided that the best thing for us – and, by extension, for our God, families and friends – was to get married soon and quickly. To get the wedding out of the way so that we could begin life together as married, be blessed by God and church (and hopefully the extension of that), and be there to support each other on a daily basis.
But it strikes me as… not funny, ironic, the obsession we have with a big, long, planned and expensive wedding and the exceptional (but imagined) correlation we have between the largess of the wedding and the quality of the marriage. So, now, not only do I have to spend a lot of time, energy, focus and money on my new spouse and beginning our new lives, now I also have to please everybody else and begin our new lives in extreme debt for a momentary day?
I’m not against big weddings, by the way. I love ’em. I love my friends that’re able to pull them off with all of their stamina and integrity intact. In fact, I still want to do a big feast/celebration for us. But you know, it just wasn’t for us at the time. And I think people should be okay with that. My parents did a quick wedding. They’re still together after 35+ years (not that they’re my model or inspiration, necessarily in their troubles. But certainly in sticking it out). But the expense and hugeness of the event has absolutely nothing to do with the marriage itself. If you want proof, check the tabloid section of your newspaper.
Marriage is a beautiful and sacred organism and its birth should be witnessed and celebrated by the participants’ communities. But if the participants decide that putting it off is more harmful than helpful, more dangerous than delightful, that should be the bride and groom’s decision and should be honored, even if cautiously.
Anyway, I’m rambling. What I wanted to point out is that sometimes (and I’m witnessing this here) the forces that love you and want to protect you from wrecking yourself and your marriage are so worried that they become devestatingly antagonistic. As a result, they contribute to the atmosphere of wreckage, as if they wait on the fringes of the marriage to help pick up the pieces after it fails and just barely restrain themselves from saying, “See, I told you so.” It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The Mrs. and I know that we are climbing an uphill battle. We know that we have some bridges to mend. We are realizing anew and bodily that “the wages of sin is death.” Add to that the fact that we are learning, on a daily basis, what it means to truly love each other – to think as a pair (And I admit my slowness in this). But this demonization is sad and foolish. It’s not loving. Despite best intentions, it’s hateful, and hate spurs destruction. Pray for us, and others on our road.