One of the many blessings of an Episcopal wedding ceremony is that when there are sermons they are short.
There is little time for humor or long drawn out stories because everyone wants to get to the “I do’s.”
So today my message is right to the point
I want to start by telling you that Randy and Pamela are my heroes.
They are my heroes because what they are doing today is not something supported by the world around us.
Marriage is not the normal thing to do nowadays. The statistics are not in any married couple’s favor. But in Christ Jesus there is hope.
What is promised here in this room and in this service is that Pamela and Randy will, with God's help, do their best to show God’s servant-like love to each other.
What the Lord wants for them, what we want for them, what the body of Christ wants for them is better than what the rest of the world wants for them.
For Randy and Pamela, as well as for all married people, God wants Spiritual health first and worldly wealth second. Hope and Joy and comfort first, ambition second. And He wants us to have clarity about what is eternally true and good instead of what ever belief system might be in fashion at any give time.
The center of this truth is found only by allowing Jesus Christ to be in the center of things.
Because people let us down, but Jesus never will.
It’s shocking to some people, but the biblical standard for marriage entails making Jesus Christ more important than your spouse.
It sounds odd but the truth is if you love and put your trust in Jesus, you start treating the people around you the way He wants you too.
If you are willing and able to let the kind of love we found in the bible readings today, flow through our own relationships, think of the transformation we would experience… Listen again to the words of 1st Corinthians 13:
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.(NIV)
Can you imagine a family reunion or a thanksgiving dinner with that kind of love in place permanently?
But that is God’s standard of grace and hope for us.
And all of us here today, you and I, have just made a promise to be a witness and an anchor for these two.
Not a flowing font of constant advice, not someone who bails them out, we are not called to butt in but to point them to Jesus when trouble comes… all the while doing our best to conform our own relationships to God’s will so that our lives will serve as a Godly example to them.
There is nothing easy about that, nothing light or these days even popular. But that’s why you and I are here. That’s why Christians marry each other in public. Because God calls us to walk a narrow path with each other, with the body of Christ, faces turned heavenward.
Randy and Pamela have begun that walk by coming to the church instead of the Justice of the Peace. There is nothing secular about this moment it is Holy, it is Blessed, and it is Sacred.
My prayer for them both is that when the memory of the planning, and preparation, and the festivity fade, that the memory that Jesus was here to bless this moment is never forgotten.
May He bless them both.
©David M. Dubay, 2007