It’s funny how something meant to be so beautiful and pure can turn into something so stressful and chaotic.
I’ve always known I wanted to get married, but I honestly never thought about my wedding. I rarely looked on Pinterest and never dreamed of a dress – I was honestly more concerned with who would love me for the rest of forever – that sounds very cheesy, and it is, but it’s also very true.
After college, I was totally and completely single for almost two years, and it was amazing. During those two years, I did not think about an engagement ring or a wedding dress one single time.
When I met my now almost husband, we knew pretty quickly that we would probably get married – still didn’t look at rings or venues or dresses or flowers or dream honeymoon locations. I promise it did not cross my mind because I was so consumed with the fact that God had given me EXACTLY who I prayed for and I was having a lot of fun loving and being loved.
Time passed and I knew he would propose soon. So the ring discussion had to happen.
My Nana passed away when I was little and left a diamond for me, so I picked the setting I wanted and that was that. That was my ring, and it was special because of the center of it and because we picked it out together. He went to have the ring designed and I didn’t make a big deal about it – I loved the ring he proposed with and never found it on Pinterest or Instagram. Guess what? It didn’t matter either way – I was more excited that HE was the one who gave me the ring, no matter what kind.
After the proposal obviously comes the planning, and that’s where things got chaotic.
Since I had never thought about what I wanted, I didn’t know what I wanted…
I am very indecisive in every day life, so you can imagine that I might be even worse when it comes to what everyone says is “the most important day of your life.” What everyone gets wrong is why it’s the most important day of your life – It’s not because of the decorations or the dress – it’s because you are committing to forever with a person you are vowing to serve and honor and love for the duration of said forever.
In the beginning, I was very laid back and didn’t get too stressed about anything. But fear not, the stress came. Long story short, I got TWO different wedding dresses. I won’t go into detail, but the second one is stunning and “my dress” and I can’t wait for him to see my walk down the aisle in it. But that’s when the stress and obsession all started.
Our wedding started becoming more and more about decorations and food and music and dresses and what people would think than the reason we were having it in the first place. That’s the problem with marriage these days – they start off with a big proposal, social media posts, pictures, big parties, and a lot of comparison instead of focusing on the relationship being celebrated people who matter there celebrating.
Please don’t misunderstand me – there is absolutely nothing wrong with a nice, big, beautiful wedding with all the “fixings.” There IS, however, something wrong with being way too fixed on all the “fixings.”
Brides allow stress to creep in when we start focusing on all the material aspects of the wedding. Then, we start comparing our wedding to all the other girls’ weddings around us. We compare our showers, our photos, our rings, our venues, our dresses… you get the picture. We start questioning all the things we picked out because we think it won’t be good enough compared to “her wedding.” Comparison will always be the thief of joy, especially when it comes to something like a wedding.
News flash: Marriage isn’t for you anyway. It’s not for me. It’s not for anybody. It’s seriously for God and His glory and His grander plan.
My fiance, Caleb, and I recently attended a marriage conference that really focused on the fact that marriage was designed by God to unite people who work together for Him and raise up generations who continue that work. The enemy works to divide what God has united, and a major way he does that is with marriage. Caleb and I have also learned that the enemy uses weddings to attack the marriage before it ever begins.
It has been so evident that the enemy has been hardcore attacking our marriage because he is so scared of what we can do for God individually and as a team. He has been sneaking into every little crevice he can find and causing stress and arguments that don’t even make sense just to try to turn us against each other.
But he never wins. He never will. God brought us together for a reason and when we focus on Him, the reason becomes clearer and clearer.
My fiance is so calm and so grounded and brings me back to earth when I go spinning out of control. He asked me, “Why has this wedding become more about the decorations and less about us and why do you think the enemy is attacking it so much?”
It made me stop and think about why I was freaking out over invitations and centerpieces and flowers instead of looking at the incredible man right in front of me. And it hit me that satan is using all of the little details to stress me out so that I won’t appreciate the love God gave me through Caleb and use it to glorify Him.
The marriage conference we went to through Church of the Highlands with speaker Jimmy Evans hit a re-set button for us and reminded us the power of marriage and how special it is that we found our “compatible opposites” to spend our lives with, forever growing and forever learning. The things Jimmy Evans set sparked something that allowed us to really share how we were feeling, so I told Caleb that I felt like everything I did for the wedding wasn’t going to be “good enough,” which pretty much reflected how I feel when I backslide and forget my purpose and my identity in Christ.
The enemy cowered away as I shed light on my insecurities, confessed them to my partner and best friend, and used our relationship for what God intended it to be. And he cowered even more as Caleb began to tell me the kindest things about me I had ever heard and will probably ever hear this side of Heaven from a human. I was silent for the majority of the car ride, which is hard to believe if you know me. I sat and listened as he told me how he really, really felt about me, and why I was absolutely “good enough.”
I won’t tell all the things he said to me as I sobbed because I respect him and the fact that some words should stay between us, but he did start by saying:
“Do you know why I’m so quiet a lot of times when we’re in crowds? It’s not because I don’t want to talk… it’s because I’m watching you and I’m in awe. You love people the way God created us to love and it is an absolute gift from Him that you can light up a room just by walking in. You change the entire atmosphere of a room just by being there and talking to people the way you talk to them.”
I tell you this not to make myself sound “cool” because Caleb thinks I’m way cooler than I am. I share this little excerpt to let you know that I have never ever thought those things about myself but I always hoped and prayed I would find someone who would love me in a way to see the best in me, even if no one else, including myself, did. And that moment, that tear-filled car ride showed me more than ever before that I had found the one meant for my soul – not for my wedding pictures or my couple’s showers or my Instagram posts or my honeymoon plans but for the deepest needs of my soul woven together by a creative God.
The silly details about the wedding that I had been so worried about no longer seemed to matter. It was a relief to feel that my marriage wasn’t for me – it wasn’t for us – it was for a much higher purpose. It was for glory. It was for God.
Someone told us a few months ago, shortly after we got engaged, that we would do great work for God’s Kingdom with a ministry as a couple and that younger people would look to us for advice. I have no idea what he meant or how that will come to fruition, but I have no doubt that it will as long as we remember that our marriage is not for us.
No wedding, no marriage, and no relationship, no matter how sweet, funny, adorable, and kind the person may be is greater than our God and His love for us. We have to know that and live that. We have to use all those great things I just mentioned to remember God and His overflowing love and show Him our thanks.
Please remember, no matter the season you’re in, your wedding IS good enough, your job IS good enough, your house IS good enough, your hair IS good enough, you ARE good enough. Everyone is walking out their own story and there isn’t another like yours. Don’t focus on all the details and decorations and miss out on the celebration of what really is important – it’s more than likely staring you right in the face.
For His glory,