Give me a minute here. Maybe even give me an hour. Because I'm about to unleash on this notion of marriage and love..and I might hurt someone's feelings. Those feelings may be yours. But you know what? That's okay with me right now. Someone's toes need to be stepped on so that their whole heart doesn't get crumpled in five years when they realize their marriage is hog wash. Yeah, I just said that.
I think every weekend this summer I've been invited to a wedding. It seems to have been my sole purpose of living for the past few years: attend bridal showers, bachelorette parties, weddings. And I'm so over it. Just plain done with it. I guess it'd be one thing if I felt that the couples going into these marriages were so crazy in love with Jesus that they were clinging to Him for survival. However, I just don't see that happening. What I do see happening is the inflation of divorce rate.
Since I was 16 I've been a bridesmaid in at least 6 weddings that I can count off the top of my head. That's not including the grueling tasks of cake server, guest book attendant, etc. eh stinking cetra I've been conned into doing. I've noticed a pattern in these "few" years I've spent slaving away for bridezillas: a wedding apparently isn't good enough anymore. What happened to the days when people got married because they loved each other and wanted a marriage? Apparently those days were thrown out the window and replaced with this attitude of "never having enough showers or parties and the wedding is just icing on the cake for all the fun stuff we get to do before we decide if we like each other or not."
It's come to my attention that couples are having more and more parties and showers to celebrate their marriage. That's ludicrous. I didn't stutter---ludicrous!!! The wedding celebrates the marriage...which celebrates your lives together. You don't need an engagement party to celebrate your marriage. That's what your wedding does. You don't need 15 wedding showers getting gifts from girls you knew your freshman year of college and just reconnected with on Facebook. That's what your wedding does (if you have a big one, of course, like too many people have). And you certainly don't need to have bachelor/bachelorette parties to celebrate your "last night of singleness." Although that's not what your wedding does, ha, you're certainly not single. You have promised your love to your fiance. It's not like you wake up on a Saturday morning (or Thursday if you're Amish) and decide you want to get married. Okay, so some people might do that. But not most. Typically there's an engagement period in which the couple is excited about the too many festivities going on to truly appreciate their time of non-physical commitment. Ha. Enjoy that one.
Let's just face the bitter truth so that I can go to bed. Or at least so I can stay up later and do something more meaningful like texting..oh, I'll have a rant for that one too one late Friday night. People don't know what love is anymore. They know what lust is. And they fall madly into it with some person of let's hope the opposite sex that is close to equally in lust with them back. They get married. Life "starts." (I HATE THAT SAYING.) All of a sudden nothing is holding the two lives together. Perhaps it's different religious views. Or maybe it's different passions. Or..hold that thought..maybe it's the fact that they don't even know that person. That's a novel thought. Get to know someone...really know someone. (And by the way...I hate when someone gets married and all of a sudden doesn't know what to do when they are alone for a miserable one night. Get over it...)
You know what I see happening all around me? I see a bunch of grown up kids trying to be like the other grown up kids they are close to running off and getting married so that they can have cute pictures and a pretty white dress. And I can say that, because I almost did the same thing. Love? Love was everything my fiance did for me. It was having someone to spend time with. And it was about thinking he had the cutest booty in town. Sure, he was a nice guy. Sure, he took decent care of me. But is that what love really is? C'mon on. We both knew we were doing what was expected of us because it was "time to get married." By the grace of God we were both saved from a disastrous marriage. I'm sure we would've stayed married, because that's what was expected of us..and we had plenty of fun together. But there's more to marriage than just having fun. There's having serious too. It's not just about laughing together, it's about crying together too. It's not just about worshiping together, it's about praying together too. It's not just about doing life together, it's about building a life together too.
A marriage partner is not just someone to keep you company. Get a dog. A roommate. A friend. A marriage partner is someone you vow to God that you will never leave nor forsake. Someone you will love and cherish through thick and thin. Those are some mighty big shoes to fill. And you just promised them to a mighty big God! Time to reevaluate that novel idea of yours to walk down the aisle to that man you like but maybe wasn't your dream? Or stand at the other end of the aisle as that girl that doesn't quite meet all you ever wanted but sure is pretty walks with her dad to meet you? Those may be some tough ideas to swallow. But I can rest assured they're easier than that broken glass of divorce that will be shoved down your throat.
In all the weddings I've been to (and they are countless), I can tell you of ONE that was my dream. Not because the guy she was marrying was just darling. But because the guy she was marrying pursued her in such a God-fearing way. He went to God for her. And you know what happened then? She just blossomed into this beautiful young woman who had eyes for her man only, and she respected him above all else. How does that work, you wonder? It's called the image of God...
Maybe you're reading this and you are a little frustrated that you're going to all these weddings and never catching the bouquet or garter. Don't you want the most amazing love story written by the Author of creation? Let Him pen it for you. Maybe you're reading this and you are getting married yourself. Save your friends and family the trouble of a gazillion things focused on you. You yourself focus on the person you're about to commit to spend the rest of your life with. Love him or her first and foremost. And I promise, pinky promise no crosses count, that you won't need all the hoopla. You'll have the hoopla on your wedding night. (And I honestly didn't mean that in the bad connotation it was probably just taken. But if the shoe fits...)