I stared dead face at my pastor, having no idea what he just said, in the middle of my vows.
IN THE MIDDLE OF MY VOWS!
AT MY WEDDING!
It was probably the most humid day I have ever experienced — like so humid my knees were sweating and all I could think about was don’t pass out and make sure you get the ring on the correct finger with minimal effort. Our pastor was having me repeat after him and my mind went completely blank.
I had no idea what he had asked me to say.
So in the middle of my wedding ceremony, while I was professing my undying loyalty to my soon-to-be husband, I looked blankly at my pastor and asked “wait what?”
Thankfully, it seemed more endearing than concerning to all parties involved and watching, and Brandon and I will be celebrating 1 month of marriage on Sunday!
I’d be lying if I said I was the perfect bride leading up to the wedding — just ask my mom. I was stressed about the weather forecast and the logistics of the day and I was emotional to say the least. A few days before the wedding we found out my Nana would not be at the wedding and the day before we found out that Brandon’s uncle would be having emergency surgery just a few hours before the ceremony. I got to the point where I started to question the goodness of God. It was hard to comprehend how something as good as marriage could cause me to doubt so intensely.
Now the day went off (mostly) without a hitch and with some sadness about our missing family. It stopped raining minutes before the ceremony would begin, leaving only 99% humidity to drench us all and the rest of the night was full of joy and celebration.
Lately, I have been finding myself discouraged, almost embarrassed, by my weakness, by my lack of faith in the time leading up to the wedding. I felt and still feel helpless at my wandering heart.
How could I be so overcome by doubt of my Father’s love for me?
I was reading in the Psalms the other day, particularly, chapters 116-118, and came away so renewed by the compassion and love that our Father has in spite of our wandering and doubt.
Psalm 116 beautifully details King David crying out to God for mercy and the compassion that he was shown. He writes about God’s goodness and his righteousness in spite of his stumbling. In verse twelve he asks “ How can I repay the Lord?” and answers his own question by declaring himself a servant and offering a sacrifice of thanksgiving to display his faithfulness.
I love the Lord because he has heard my appeal for mercy. Because he has turned his ear to me, I will call out to him as long as I live…. The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is compassionate. The Lord guards the inexperienced; I was helpless, and he saved me. Return to your rest, my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. For you, Lord, rescued me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.Psalm 116:1-2, 5-9 CSB
In my bible, Psalm 117 is titled a “Universal Call to Praise.” It is the shortest Psalm and shortest chapter in the bible and yet not lacking in any importance. Keep in mind that the primary audience for the Psalms was the Jewish people, but these two verses emphasize that all nations and all peoples are to praise the Lord for his enduring faithfulness. The call to praise excluded none and was expected of all and that remains the same today.
Praise the Lord, all nations! Glorify him, all peoples! For his faithful love to us is great; the Lord’s faithfulness endures forever. Hallelujah!Psalm 117 CSB
Again and again we see in Psalm 118 the declaration “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his faithful love endures forever.” Could the call to worship in the face of fear and hopelessness be any clearer? Psalm 118 also gives us the known verses about calling to the Lord in distress and finding help (v. 5-7), proclaiming the victory of the Lord (v. 17), and rejoicing in the day the Lord has given (v. 24).
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his faithful love endures forever….The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation….You are my God, and I will give you thanks. You are my God; I will exalt you. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his faithful love endures forever.Psalm 118:1, 14, 28-29 CSB
Planning for marriage and a wedding and now becoming a wife has been the most sanctifying experience. It has revealed my weaknesses in a way that I knew was inevitable but was not prepared for. I find myself running to Jesus in new ways and daily working to put to death my flesh.
Praise be to God for his faithfulness in my weakness and the joy I have in him for tomorrow.
“Being weak is our greatest strength when it leads to desperate dependence on God. Being helpless is never hopeless when it leads us to the cross.”– She Reads Truth Devotional Content Staff
P.S. Find a community that brings you to Jesus. Molly and Ana continually listened to my struggles and showered me with encouragement. They have celebrated my transition into being a wife and mourned the valleys that came with it.