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By Michael Somerville.

I like beginnings. For me, beginnings are full of exciting possibility! I find myself brimming with confidence … before I start making mistakes! When I was younger (and possibly more foolish), I felt …

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Home » All Posts, That Kitchen Drawer

It Rained on My Wedding!

Submitted by on October 13, 2011 – 2:14 pm13 Comments

Look at the archives list for this blog and you’ll see that September posts are non-existent, and that posts between May and August are few in number. There’s a good reason for this: I’ve been focused on two of my adult children’s marriages.

They got married within three weeks of each other. Nate and Jill were married on September 10 (note: 9/10/11) and Charity and Brandon were married on October 1. You might remember Nathan: he’s my eldest child and used to work with us on Tapestry of Grace until God called him to a different vocation. Nathan has waited until the ripe old age of 30 to meet the one girl for him. His wedding was blessed with good weather and sweet moments, and we very much enjoyed our sojourn in NJ, spending time with family and friends. Here are a picture or two to enjoy; feel free to click on them to enlarge:

Mr. & Mrs. Nathaniel Somerville recessing.

Made for each other.

 

Nate and Jill’s wedding was SO sweet! We came home happy and so grateful to God for his blessings on these two. Three weeks were left until Charity’s wedding. Months of work and planning had gone into this now-looming event. The task ahead seemed both daunting and joyful to me. Here’s why…

As some of you know, the Lord led us to buy a 40-acre farm last April. It was three and a half hours’ drive from our MD home and had (when we bought it) been abandoned for 30 years. Here are a few shots of how the house looked:

North side: crumbling foundation, broken windows, no heat or bathrooms present.

South side of house in March, 2011.

 

It was on this snowy, March day pictured above that Charity (who had been engaged since December) first saw our farm, and proclaimed: “I’d like to get married HERE!”

Well… The next six months saw many hours of prayer, counsel, and assessment. We Somervilles are always up for an adventure, but! The house is in a remote location. There is no Internet there. There is no cell phone service. The roads are twisty and mountainous. Charity wanted an evening wedding, so most of the guests would need overnight lodging. We wondered about catering, flowers, hair and nails–so many details, so little infrastructure!

Much social capital would be expended in order for the guests to even reach the farm, let alone climb to the wedding knoll where Charity wanted the service conducted. She was good; she worked through a process with us. We sought the Lord and the counsel of others for months. All seemed to agree: this was the spot.

 

We call it Storybook Farm.

So, as spring gave way to summer, we began renovations on the house and the farm. We installed a septic system, repaired the house’s crumbling foundation, added onto the north side, raised the roof and added bathrooms on the south side, scraped its grayed lead paint off and put a coat of yellow and white on, built fences, mowed fields, and battled rose bushes (yes, wild roses are weeds on farms left to go to seed). Hours, dollars, sweat, and prayer prevailed as the summer unfolded. Everything had a joyful dual purpose: we were beautifying and repairing for the wedding and future family retreats, so we counted it all joy. Below are some highlights.

A two-story yew tree obscured the house.

House after one day's clean-up

 

South side framing.

 

Care Group friends came to help us scrape lead paint!

Scraping the front... and some paint!

A week before the wedding... painting, painting!

 

What a difference a summer can make!

 

And, of course, above are the pictures of some changes to just the house. We also pulled up hundreds of rose bushes, had thousands of feet of fences put in, and enjoyed the natural beauty of the land as we prepared and prayed to the Lord for the gifts from His Creation that we anticipated that He would give Charity’s wedding guests!

Working to create a Dancing Lawn for the reception.

 

Rose bushes as weeds!

A work crew came to help us build a rock retaining wall.

Sunrise from my window.

The nearby stream where workers cooled off after heavy labors.

Cows in the field newly mown.

We burned piles of dead rose bushes.

And built benches in the wedding knoll... to seat the expected guests.

We sheathed the benches in bridal white, just in case it rained... but didn't believe it would!

The extended, month-out forecast called for a perfect day on October 1 as we soldiered on. Then, as the weeks were spent, the weather began to change. For the majority of two weeks before the wedding, it rained. This delayed the painting of the farmhouse, and slowed down other preparations. We continued to work and to trust God. As I sought Him, He spoke to my heart through a song on my playlist by Stevie Wonder: “Don’t you worry ’bout a thing!”

I didn’t. My trust in the Savior’s ability to control the wedding day’s weather was profound. He had met us in a hundred ways, some dramatic and some simply mundane, as we’d labored over the summer. We sensed His approbation of our purchase and work on the farm. I felt keenly that I was asking a lot of our guests to travel to this “destination wedding” to honor Charity, so some of my motivation was to be able to give our guests something special in return!

One evening, as we were eating dinner, the rain cleared and we looked out our farmhouse window and saw this:

A double rainbow overarched our fields.

I took it for a sign of confirmation. All would be well!

The service was set for 5:30 PM. Months ago, we had made back-up plans for cold and/or rain. For good weather, we planned a double reception: one on our Dancing Lawn from 6:00 to dusk, around 7:15 would include hot hors d’oeuvres, music, a slide show of Charity and Brandon’s youth and engagement, and the traditional toasts when the bride and groom came in from taking pictures. Then, we would all travel downhill about 20 minutes to the Living Faith Church to enjoy a sit-down dinner and dancing in a reliably warm and dry building. Charity and I figured that, in the case of severe cold and/or rain, we could move the service to the church and just do one, elongated reception there.

The weather prediction changed again the day before the wedding. On the day, the weather man now said “rain, and 45 degrees.” However, the morning dawned beautiful, and we still trusted that God would part the clouds and confound the predictions of men just for us! At noon, the skies became overcast. Still, I was not worried. Close family and friends arrived. At 3:30, it started to sprinkle lightly. I helped Charity into her bridal gown, and we had pictures taken. At 4:30, it really began to rain steadily. The clouds weren’t budging. The guest wandered the grounds with umbrellas. Their spirits were not dampened, but I was thinking that it was time for “Plan B.”

At 5:00, I went into Charity’s dressing room and said, “Honey, it’s time to make the plan. It’s raining; it really is.” She looked at me graciously and steadily and said, “Mom, I really want to do it here. In the rain.”

I looked at my daughter in disbelief. I couldn’t make sense of what she was saying. I stammered out: “Really? Consider our guests! You’ll be cold. It doesn’t make sense.”

“Mom, I really want to stand up in the rain. I do.”

At that point, my mind shut down and the fatigue and overload that were already present descended. I went through the whole thing mentally numb and mechanically. Somehow, it all unfolded. We had the service–much abbreviated–in the rain. Even as I sat stupefied with wet and cold, I was also vaguely aware of the beauty and unflappable joy of my daughter and the tender, protective love of her groom for her. They were the focal point of the event, and every guest’s eye was fixed on their obvious love for each other. Every ear heard a passionate recital of their biblically-centered vows. To look at them, you would never have known that it was raining. Indeed, the pictures we have so far give you the impression that it wasn’t!

Charity processing on her dad's arm.

He's about to say "man and wife!"

Mr. & Mrs. Brandon Wyzga recess.

Our dedicated crew of helpers moved the hors d’oeuvres tables to the front porch of the farmhouse and the pastor invited the happy throng of 150 people into our antique house. It was packed with people who were grateful for hot spiced cider and warm meatballs. I wondered vaguely if the floor joists would give way, and moaned inwardly that cots and blankets from overnight guests were still in place, the floors weren’t swept–in fact, the house had never been prepared for the guests. My eye saw all this but in snapshots and in slow motion. It was like being in a car wreck; my heart was numb. I think I was still in shock.

After about 15 minutes, we told the guests that we would now get into cars and descend the mountain to the church building for the dinner and dancing reception. There, the PA system didn’t work, so the MC had to shout his announcements and the caterer’s food was a disappointment. But, other than these glitches, the couple was happy, the pictures were taken, and the guests socialized and were fed and danced. I ate, drank, chatted, and recovered my balance slowly… but inwardly I was still reeling. At the end of the evening, as close friends and family were leave taking, reaction set in and I was sobbing.

After all our work, prayer, and trust, God allowed it to rain on our wedding. “How,” I asked my husband in the car on the way to the reception, with bitter agony of tone, “was God glorified in that?!!!” I was stunned; I was grieving. For days afterwards, I struggled. I felt weepy and depressed, and then pretty normal, and then saw disaster-focused reruns in my mind, by turns. I told myself to snap out of it, that it was only a rainstorm! I examined myself, “Do I have idols or sins that need to be addressed here? Clearly this reaction is over the top!” I spent time alone, and time with friends. They were all incredibly kind and encouraging. They prayed for and with me, spoke truth to me, and sometimes, just let me talk or cry.

It may be too soon to be writing this post. It’s been two weeks now and I’m still digging to the bottom of all that God is doing in my heart through this. While it sounds so small to say, “it rained,” and I’m aware that so many of you reading this have so much more adversity than I will ever experience, I’m confident that I’m supposed to be sharing because I know that we are to comfort others with the comfort given us during times of adversity by God’s Spirit. Large or small, adversity is hardship, and the lessons that one learns can be applied by others to their situations, no matter what the relative proportions are. I’ve been taking my sorrows to God and to counselors who love me, and have been met with love and favor. So, for what it’s worth, here’s what I know so far:

1. Grief can’t be rushed. It washes over you like waves, and is oh so humbling. You can’t control it; you can’t fix it. It just is, and being so, it takes time to heal.

2. God loves me, and did this for a good reason. I saw a sunny day as the best of all outcomes; He saw rain was what I needed most. His Son’s death on the Cross informs me that He is not angry with me. He loves me. I am His daughter and He is disciplining me for my good (Hebrews 12:5-11). If I embrace the discipline of a rainstorm, I will grow. If I push it away, He will need to bring more pressure to bear on me until He successfully forms Christ in me.

3. I am a sinner, and I have harbored sins in my heart that God could dig out and heal in no more benign or gracious way. So far, pride, fear of man, and worldliness have come to light. I’m not going to go into detail here. I am going to say that a sunny day would not have brought these deeply harbored sins to my attention, and I’m daily digging into them so that I can repent and be cleansed according to the riches that are mine in Christ Jesus.

4. One thing that initially bewildered me was the fact that this wedding was prayed up and submitted to God and others, and not undertaken lightly or willfully. We wanted to let the gift of natural beauty frame this wedding and glorify God in all it’s golden beauty. God wanted to glorify Himself in a host of hearts in other ways through rain and cold. I will never know on this earth what all those ways are. I don’t even understand what they all are in my own heart. But, I can rest in this: we prayed for this event. God answers prayers. I now believe that He was and is glorified according to His will in the way that He chose to have the day unfold. I rest in the mystery: it’s His call.

5. Never has He left me, never has He forsaken me. There were so many grace notes to the day. As the grief and shock have subsided, as distance has come, as sleep and rest have healed my nerves and brain, I am remembering more and more of them. The guests were uniformly kind: they took on the weather as part of the adventure of the destination wedding and remained in good spirits throughout the event. Charity and Brandon were so precious and so happy; in the end, they are also married! The pictures coming back are lovely, and give back to me day after day the moment that I thought that I’d lost forever in the immediate aftermath. Many friends did see the beauty of the farm and praise the God of Creation in their hearts and with their lips, despite the rain. And, not the least of these, a marriage like that in the midst of cold and rain displayed the truth that if marriage is about Christ and the church, its inception has been in the sin-sick world we call home. How better to illustrate the overcoming power and the beauty of the Bride of Christ than to wed your true love triumphantly in the midst of less-than-perfection?

This picture is so iconic of the day, and is so much more precious to me now than any shot of the beaming couple on a sunny day could have been:

Man and Wife

6. In the end, it’s not about me. It never was my wedding, even if I was the titular hostess of the event. What is it about instead? As with all of life–homeschooling, marriages, parenting, and church life–it’s about God working, faithfully and daily, to form the likeness of His dear Son in me. It’s about His right and ability to be GOD in my life. Its about the gospel power to overcome my sins and failures and bring a heart full of worship and praise where there once was pain. That’s our God; that’s His overriding purpose in my life (and in yours) come rain or shine. As Hab 3:17-19 (ESV) says:

Though the fig tree should not blossom,

nor fruit be on the vines,

the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food,

the flock be cut off from the fold

and there be no herd in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the Lord;

I will take joy in the God of my salvation.

God, the Lord, is my strength;

he makes my feet like the deer’s;

he makes me tread on my high places.

I am grateful that He has brought me to a place where I can wholeheartedly say, “to Him be the glory, now and forever. I confidently affirm that He is God in my life, and joyfully submit to His will, day to day.” What a precious gift of growth he has given to me, carefully wrapped up a perfectly timed rainstorm.

 

 

13 Comments »

  • Jennifer says:

    Rain is what God uses to grow things, to wash them clean, and to make things new. I cannot think of a better or more fitting symbolism of God’s gift to us through Christ than a wedding in the rain. It shows the strength of their faith that He will provide everything that they need in their new life together. It shows their faith that He has washed them clean, and that they begin their new life as a married couple with the knowledge of His forgiveness to enable them to forgive each other. May God continue to bless these two newly wed couples, as He directs their paths for His glory.

  • Kathy-boo says:

    Thanks, Marcia, for posting this. It is a help in our journey of faith. God has not yet matched Jerry with a pastor position and we’re baffled by our situation at present. But we know that God has a good plan for us. We will keep praying and waiting.

  • Kathy says:

    I loved everything about Charity’s wedding. I loved clomping up the hill in the muddy downpour, even tripping on my shawl and falling and jabbing the pastor with my umbrella. I laughed as those around me stopped to save my life. I loved sitting there as it poured waiting for the bridal party to emerge. I loved watching the men with towels wiping the white, plastic covered benches so the ladies could sit down. I marveled at the men in their suits, proudly standing in the rain, with the brides of their youth to honor this union before God. I loved chatting with your neighbors as they marveled at all of the guests who came from afar to celebrate this day with Charity. I enjoyed watching the clusters of people without umbrella’s taking cover under the trees together…all of them cheerfully talking…some during the ceremony. I listened to the beautiful pitter-patter of the rain on the umbrellas in front of me and marveled at their beautiful colors. What a way to bring a lot of color to wedding? I looked at that amazing moutainous scenery with the leaves turning on the hills, and even through the fog and rain, was so glad I had clomped up that hill to see it.

    I felt proud when your neighbor’s car drove past the ceremony and slowed and marveled at the sight. Yes. This is us. We’re happily standing in the pouring down rain in our best clothes because a man and woman are giving their lives to each other before God today…and it matters.

    I smiled as the precious flower girls in their beautiful dresses followed the lead of those around them and cheerfully came down the path, stopping to dump their entire baskets of flowers on cue into one big pile on the wet grass. I admired the bridesmaids, with their beautiful hair and dresses, standing regally in the rain, blinking away the water on their face. I wasn’t surprised when the beaming bride tipped her face to the sky and embraced the rain. She is resilient that way. God had rain for her on her most special day and she was loving Him for it. I swallowed hard to think of the pastor, traveling this far, getting a license in another state, now standing in his best suit with no umbrella because a man and woman were giving their lives to each other before God today…and it matters.

    I was so relieved to pack into your farmhouse, your offering of labor to God and His purposes, to warm myself with 150 other people by the woodstove. If you had us on the lawn, I would have felt like a guest. But, I was in your home, your kitchen, with all of your dirty dishes, and I felt like one of your family. I’m so glad I got to “come inside”.

    We were thrilled by the adventure, the road trip, the winding roads, the spectacular scenery. It was exciting to read the directions on the map, “turn left when you get to the town of M____, it is a white cinderblock building that is no longer standing”. I was amused to hear a bull and cow were in the road on the way to the reception in the dark. We don’t run into things like that every day.

    Marcia, the reception was all good. I would almost have to say it was perfect. For some reason, everyone LOOKED dry. Their hair looked flawless. Their gowns amazing. Their faces radiant. For some reason, we all seemed to forget about the cold and the rain. The evening was full of affection and joy. The food was NOM NOM! I was so affected by Scott’s dance with Charity. It wasn’t an awkward dance of a distant father dancing with his daughter for the first time. It was the dance of a father who has obviously taken the time to do this many times before. When the swing dance music started and they all hit the dance floor…well, I wouldn’t have expected anything else. We know they all love to dance. I sat back in my chair and marveled at those who had traveled so far. There were people from quite a few different seasons of my life. They were there from our old church and there from our new church and ones from the church there in town. All of them together in a remote town late on a rainy night because a man and woman were giving their lives to each other before God today…and it matters.

    Someday, we hope to come back and visit that little hotel downtown. Antique, yet pristine and immaculate. So good to be with my husband in such a cute little room with fru-fru curtains, lacy bedspread and antique furniture. We’ve probably only been away overnight two or three times in our 25 year marriage. It was a day of celebrating God’s wonderful gift of marriage and a time of thankfulness as we reflected on our years together.

    I don’t know if you know this, but we had breakfast at the diner with your brother the next morning. He’s a great guy! In fact, everyone who walked in the door there was with you. All would agree, it was a remarkable wedding.

    I was proud to stand up as a guest at Living Faith Church in the morning as ones who were there for the wedding and so affected by your nephew-in-law’s message.

    The most significant testimony of the entire event was a faithfulness to God. I NEVER heard anyone utter a negative word about the rain. All of the people embraced the storm as God’s Sovereign plan and valued the purpose and significance of the day because a man and woman were giving their lives to each other before God today…and it matters.

  • Sharon Land says:

    The pictures of the wedding are absolutely beautiful!!! You can see the radiance and joy in the bride’s face as she awaits the one who loves her and has come to claim her as his own.

    What a beautiful symbol a wedding is to everyone who has the pleasure to witness it! We know that one day Christ, our bridegroom, will come to claim us as him own. We are the bride, the church, and eagerly await His coming!

    God used the events of Charity’s wedding to show that even though the storms may come we are loved, sheltered, strong, and secure in the arms of the one who loves us, and has claimed us as His bride for eternity!

    Thank you for sharing with us Marcia! I always get a blessing from your blog!

  • Jo says:

    It rained on my wedding this past October. :(
    I have been asking myself the same questions you did, for almost 6 months now. I know it seems silly, everyone told me “It’s good luck” or “Every wedding has *some* thing go wrong”…but I felt like their words were empty and for me, the hurt was much deeper than that.

    Not only did it rain but the electricity went out in the reception hall of our tiny historic church a few hours before the wedding…the chapel coordinator was not there to deal with it, nothing could be cooked, our only bathrooms were in the hall and we were having an evening reception where we would need light in the bathrooms. Eventually we found a way to warm the food, but the sky was overcast and gloomy…I had always imagined my wedding on a beautiful sunny day. :(

    On top of that we were having an outdoor reception….we had a tent with 2 sides but also the day began getting colder and windier…immediately after our indoor ceremony the wind began gusting in full force and it was very chilly. When the slight drizzle happened many of our guests left before the reception even officially began, and many left right after the meal, leaving only a handful of people to celebrate with us. :( It hurt me very much that people did not stay for our reception… I see that you wrote that your guests didn’t mind the rain…apparently our guests did not have that attitude. The electricity never came back on and people had to navigate their way to the restrooms in the dark and then use the glow of a flashlight that we had propped in there. During the wedding I tried my best to fake enthusiasm but I was so sad. My family, especially my mother and I, had worked so, so hard to put this wedding together and I felt that it was all ruined. God had made it rain on my wedding day – He must hate me. The days before our wedding were sunny and warm, so were the days after our wedding. Our wedding was the rainy day surrounded by dry days.

    The day after our wedding we were in the car when I couldn’t hold it in any longer…I burst into tears and was racked with sobs, telling my husband that I was so upset and sad and disappointed that it rained and that I felt like God hated me. I couldn’t talk to anyone else because I didn’t want my mother to find out I was disappointed and for her to feel bad. The pain has lessened but I too am haunted by memories that spring up in my mind, reminding me of the all the things that went wrong. Not just the rain but the electricity outage, starting the ceremony late, the photographer only getting 1 or 2 pictures of the beautiful table settings we put together (and then those same vases and flowers toppling over later because of the wind and rain). If I could I would go back in time and just have a courthouse wedding, because that would have been better than all the wasted hard work and money and disappointment.

    I went to my cousin’s wedding a couple of weeks ago and it was a gorgeous, beautiful clear day…it made me very sad that he and his wife got to have a beautiful wedding day….why didn’t I deserve that? Next Friday we are going to my husband’s best friend’s wedding and likewise the forecast says “bright, sunny and warm.” Why do they get a sunny beautiful wedding and I didn’t? I think to myself that God must like them better than me. To be honest, I have been secretly hoping that it would rain on their wedding, because it just doesn’t seem fair that I should be the only one. Obviously I am bitter and sad and I just have not gotten over this… Obviously I am happy that we are married but was it too much to ask, to have our wedding not have so many things go wrong?

    I’m sorry, this is a ridiculous post, I just felt like I needed to tell someone who could relate.

    • Marcia says:

      Jo,

      First of all, can I give you a virtual hug? {Jo} I can SO relate to you. Please feel my connection and compassion as a hug from Father, Who loves you SO much!

      BIG PAUSE. BIG HUG: {{{JO!}}}

      Second, can I offer you some comfort in the form of asking you to look at your wedding events in a different light? (I know this reads like preaching, but actually, I think some good preaching may really help you, so here goes!)

      God’s love for us is not best seen in His granting us good gifts here on earth that we desire and feel are “not too much to ask” like sunny days for special occasions, or electricity to see by. His love is best seen in the outstretched arms of His Son, crucified for you because He wants for you to spend eternity with Him. As the days go by, and you join Him there, the rainy day will become a grace note because He promises that there there will be no more tears. But until then, it is an act of our will and of faith given by Him to remember that His proof of love is at the cross of Christ, not in the sunny day.

      In America, we are so used to both controlling our environment and having things go the way that we want/envision them to go. God chose a different day for you (and for me) than we wanted. This is a trial, for sure. I know; I’ve lived it with you. The question for us is this: where are we going to take our thoughts and emotions in response? Is this trial going to make us bitter, or better?

      As Christians, we are given the Holy Spirit as a Helper to enable us to make right choices. You have the opportunity in weeks and years ahead to submit to God’s choice for your special day, and love Him despite your disappointment. You also have the opportunity to serve God’s Enemy and agree with him (as did Eve) that He doesn’t love you, that He isn’t for you, and that He doesn’t care. Satan would love that, but I bet when you see him unmasked you wouldn’t want to dishonor God by agreeing with His enemy against Him!

      Jo, this won’t be your first disappointment! As we walk through this sin-sick world, we will have may opportunities to trust God when it’s hard. As an older woman, I want you to know that those whom you are tempted to envy for their nice wedding days will face trials ahead. They will encounter tragedy, disease, financial hardships, etc. They will face their “bad days” enough. It’s part of life on earth. You have had a really bad day early in your marriage. That’s really hard. (Again, I know!) But…

      Can I encourage you to read up on the six things that I was able to list within days of my SEVERE disappointment with Charity’s wedding day? Probably because I’m older and have more experience with God’s loving character even when life hurts, I was able to look for evidences of grace even in my pain. My list is honest, and look how much GOOD stuff I learned through God’s choice for our special day!

      Then, can I encourage you to make your own list: what has God showed you about your own expectations (thoughts, desires, etc.) towards Him? Is He just a cosmic Santa who exists to grant your desires, or is He God–as in Romans 9–Who has the right to do what He determines is best with His creations (us)? Is He your all-in-all, or are you tempted away from Him by the world’s promises of better things? Is your faith rooted in the unchanging truths of Scripture, or in the changeable and fickle soil of feelings, and human reasoning?

      See, Jo, in a way, you have been given a real and beautiful gift: a glimpse into your own heart, where you can see the true sentiments that rule you at present. Some of that is ugly, as you have so candidly revealed above: bitterness, envy, charging God. He longs to purge and heal that part of your heart, and to show you what true lovingkindness is as a result. Some of your heart responses are strong: you have been severely tried and have not chosen to leave the Lord your God. You rejoice that you are, in fact, married. You showed concern for your mom by not breaking down until you were in your car. These are real evidences of grace and strength!

      I know that the above is strong medicine, but I don’t want you to walk in loveless bitterness for years to come, or to dance to the Devil’s tune one minute longer than you need to. In Hebrews 12:15 (ESV) we read this important warning: “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no ‘root of bitterness’ springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled…”

      Bitterness is nasty: it distorts our vision and defiles our relationships with God and one another. It does absolutely no good to us or others, even though in the moment it can “feel good to feel bad.” PLEASE ask for God’s help to conquer it by looking to the One Who suffered and died for you in agony (and endured darkness and rain and abandonment by those He loved most on earth on your behalf) because He loves you THAT much. I am praying that this response will fill your heart with appropriate repentance, and–more importantly–the restoration of a right perspective on the events of your wedding day and the GOOD fruit that God’s choices for you can bear in your heart if you respond in humility and faith. God chose those circumstances not because He hates you, but because He loves you and knows that it takes just that amount of pressure on your heart to free it from life-dominating sins and attitudes.

      James 4:6-8 (ESV) assures us of real truth:

      But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.

      May LOVE and GRACE abound where there once was sorrow and suffering. I’m praying for you earnestly as I write this!

  • Sarah says:

    Marcia- I love your response to Jo’s experience and feelings about rain on her wedding. It also rained on our wedding 17 years ago. I chose the Kentucky Horse Park for a beautiful outdoor location and the reception was to be inside the shelter of a tobacco barn close to the pine grove where we were going to say our vows. A storm blew in and the whole thing moved inside- all the guests were cold and there was such a loud and long clap of thunder during the ceremony that I had to wait about 10 seconds to get a word in edgewise and say “I do”. What’s amazing is that years later people who were guests at our wedding recall all of the wonderful things, and no one even mentions the rain.

    Recently a friend posted a motivational picture on Facebook, a picture of a daisy and on each rainbow colored petal was a word… “Your perfect just the way you are.” only… “Your” was spelled like that. While the critic in me cringed- my soul laughed at how I had been snared in the ironic catch 22 embedded in the misspelled and loving message.

    Rain on a wedding day is a cosmic joke just like that- and you have to tune in to get the punchline (and the lesson). Remember, God loves us completely despite our imperfections.

  • Adrienne says:

    I recently found your article. I was married July 4
    2014. The weather was beautiful all week and even
    Waking up the morning of the wedding it was sunny
    And warm. I thanked God for beautiful weather.
    It was gorgeous all day but when we lined up for
    The ceremony it turned gray and turned to light rain.
    This was an outdoor wedding on a beautiful farm.
    My Mom started to stress but everyone assured her
    It would surely pass. My parents walked me to my
    Groom. The video assistant tried to get out of the
    Way but in doing so she knocked the table over
    That had the communion and unity candle. All I could
    Think of was what else could go wrong. The light
    Rain did not let up. We ended up moving the tables
    Into the barn along with the dj. Some guests didn’t
    Know we were moving into the barn so they went
    Home because they were cold. The dj announced his
    Brothers name when introducing ya as a couple for
    The first time. I did not get to use the fire out in
    Which I set up a smores buffet. The guests didn’t
    Really get to wander and enjoy the beauty of the
    Venue. All I could think was ” what did I do wrong?
    Am I not a good enough person? Did I not read
    My bible enough or go to church more than I did?
    What did I do so wrong?” I waited 32 yrs fir that moment.
    Planned it for a year and that’s what happens? I’m trying
    To get over it but it’s hard. Yes I married an amazing man
    But I wanted so much fir that day to go the way I envisioned.
    I’m supposed to go to a wedding and the couple
    Is very sweet. But I hate that I am envious because
    Their wedding is on a farm and they will have beautiful
    Weather. Your article helped me feel a little better.
    No one could say anything to take the sting awAy
    But your words helped . Thank you.

    • Marcia says:

      Adrienne,

      thanks for commenting. Can I give you a virtual hug?

      {{Adrienne}}

      I answered Jo, above, as I would answer you. As a fellow woman, creature, and sinner, I join you in your sorrow. I completely understand how you feel and sympathize! To this day, there’s a sore spot in that memory for me. But, it is less sore now than it was two years ago. :D

      Our disappointments, small and large, are all tests of our faith and trust in the Lord. Seldom do they have to do with “aren’t we good enough?” because the answer to that question is always “no.” We aren’t good enough for any blessings.

      But Jesus is! He is good enough to give us some of the blessings that we ask for and delight in, but also to give us what we need to purify us and make us holy. Sometimes, that makes us unhappy, but this too passes as our loving Savior weaves the threads of our life together into a beautiful garment that we’ll wear for our ultimate wedding day to Him: our Bridegroom.

      Congratulations on being married! I’m praying for you as I write this that the world will seem a little paler, and Heaven’s LORD a little more real, because of this disappointing experience.

      God bless you! And, thanks again for sharing!

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