Monday, October 10, 2011

Day 607: Greater than through love and support

I have been in Disney for a few days. More on that later.
The reason I was there was because, once again, I had a special honor to be involved in the wedding of two very special people. This has become something of a regular event for me, but it is not something that has become anything I take for granted. It is, with no hyperbole at all, stunning to be invited to officiate at such an occasion.

For me, it is even more profound because I struggled for so long with relationships and particularly because for so long I was not sure that I would have a relationship, a marriage, a life like the one I have today. Part of what makes my role in all this so special for me and I hope for the couples that I have been involved with is that what I bring to to the table, other than the actual enthusiasm for long lasting joinings of hearts, minds and spirts, is some of that experience, that understanding, and so much of the mistakes, the failures, and the successes that have come along the way that help to inform my own life. No matter what, it is a priviledge.

This week, it was a couple that was genuinely good at heart. I write the script for the ceremony for each couple based on what I experience with the couple themselves. For this couple, I found a passage from the bible from Colossians that was so perfect for them. It was the perfect way to welcome the wedding day. I want to write more about that scripture in minute, but the wedding was very similar to the one that happened over Hurricane Irene. All was planned so well, but the weather was not a willing guest. Like the weekend of Irene, I watched a groom and a bride respond to the moment and find joy and love and celebration no matter what the weather. They had filled their week with laughter, friends and family. Any drama was left at the door, and now it was time to just focus on the love. They embraced each other and gave that love to those around them. So, the wedding did not take place with Cinderella's castle as the backdrop, but it was no less magical, no less wonderful. In fact, in many respects, it was even more wonderful because everyone, gathered in the "back up" place, beautifully dressed was there to see and experience a love that had been forming since these two were teens....and had lasted and transcended more than most marriages these days before their own marriage. Nothing could have been more lovely.

I got to witness again the look in their eyes. This is the third time I have seen "it". That look where you know there is LOVE, with a capital L. I got to see a deep and real sense of desire to do right for each other. I will always be there, if they need to be reminded of that look. that is a precious gift to witness, to hold for that couple. I am always at their ready to give that back to them if they need it. to be reminded.

But the scripture:

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

I chose this for several reasons, but mostly because I saw in this couple so much love, compassion, and true and honest love. I saw them facing a world that was not any of that in so many ways but if they chose to hold fast to one another and use this as a guide, one day at time, they could and would forge such and incredible and strong force for good in the world. I shared this and more with them.

But, I have been thinking more and more today, as I have returned home about this passage. For those who may read this who are not Christians but might read this in a more universal spiritual sense, this still reads as true. It translates easily into "Give a shoulder to each other and be supportive and live with a forgiving heart, and have above all things LOVE. To live a life of gratitude (which is an action filled life of service), a life that is about the business of PEACE, and one that is focused on aims that are higher than our own selves, our own interests, our own self fish needs."

This one passage was a recipe, a prescription spiritual life goals that are a part of what can make my own life the best it can be. And yet, when I returned home, I encountered situations where this simple means to make way for us to live is so difficult. If I go into detail about the "situations" i get into to much of my "public" life. But, I get so tired to folks who complicate the means for us to be able to aid and assist those in need. Those who seek to harm others when they themselves have their own issues. When do we become more forgiving and less finger pointing? When do we focus on what we need to do to be healthy ourselves and stop focusing on the issues of others?

The marriage this weekend was between a wonderful young couple. The scripture was about how to be healthy in that relationship. But what came back to me in a blessing beyond being the witness and being present at the event, was being reminded that this scripture is also about my relationship with the world around me. I cannot hold others accountable to it. I cannot EXPECT others to live this way. But I CAN expect myself to live this way and to work towards this end. I can take the scripture and boil it down further: Support, forgive, Love; Be Grateful, Peaceful, and Self-less. This can be a mantra into action. So that as I continue to face what comes my way, I can not only be supportive, but remember how much I am supported, I can be forgiving and perhaps I will be forgiven, I can love and truly mean it...and perhaps love will happen around me. I can live a life of gratitude and the things that happen around me will not be taken for granted, I can work towards peace in all things and be about making more peace, and work one self lessness where being self fish is not about prioritizing my health and growth.

That is a wonderful benefit of this have a work out plan for my soul! :)
thanks be!

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