hidden glory

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

the joys and trials of engagement



We look like a pretty happily engaged couple, don't we? Especially since the backdrop is the gorgeous Southern Gone-with-the-Wind style Inn that was available for our reception. It was our #1 pick, and surprisingly, our wedding date in August was one of the only 4 dates open in 2006. We were amazed at our "luck." Amazed that God would answer a prayer that seems so trivial in the big picture.

However, there have been many, many more decisions since then that have not been so quick or easy. It's been pretty incredible to me to experience how difficult wedding planning and engagement actually can be. It's amazing how many familial conflicts emerge under the stress of such an undertaking. And how raw you become to the person you are promising to spend the rest of your life loving. It's really different from what you see in the movies and the romance novels: a banner waving "happily ever after" as the man and woman ride off into the sunset of bliss together.

No, no--that's not really what engagement is like. (nor what marriage will be like either, from what I hear) What's found instead is a deeper joy than the picture perfect glee painted by the culture of this engagement season. It's a joy like what happend at dinner tonight when we realized that we (1) both actually had a good day (2) on the same day (3) and didn't talk about wedding plans (4) even though finals and papers still loom ahead. Honestly, it feels like a miracle. Certainly a much bigger answer to prayer than our #1 reception place being available.

That's my struggle especially during this season: to keep in mind the big picture. To have a view of life and marriage that is bigger than a wedding. To wrestle with struggles larger than merely what style to choose for the bridesmaid dress. So that I can enjoy what is truly important about the wedding, engagement, and life: relationships. With friends, with family, with my fiance, and above all--with my Creator and Redeemer who makes any of these possible.

It gives a whole new meaning to the Biblical analogy that our time on earth as Christians is like an engagement as we the Bride of Christ await the wedding feast to come in Heaven. There is joy to be found, but it is much deeper than we picture...and it comes mixed in with the angst of waiting and preparing for our Bridegroom.

2 Comments:

  • Heather!

    You speak such truth friend! Brian and I just got engaged on Monday night! It is so incredible and wonderful and exciting! But, as you mention too . . . there is such "rawness" that comes too . . .with family issues and the stress of various things. Thank you for the wonderful reminder today. I needed it!!!

    We can pray with and for each other through this engagement process :)! (Our wedding is the first Saturday in January . . . so, we have some time :).

    Take care!
    Mary

    By Blogger Mary O, At 10:24 AM  

  • Thanks for your comment, Mary! I just left one on your blog...

    I'm THRILLED for you both, and it is a very good thing that you have until January. That should take away some of the time pressure of making these decisions.

    Let's definitely pray for one another!! And hopefully get together sometime soon...

    By Blogger Heather, At 10:32 AM  

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