Tag Archives: wedding

The cheering section

This is one of the stations I staged ahead of time.

I’m so thankful the Lord had me do things this way.

I’d prayed a lot about the best way to organize and plan everything.

Experience has taught me things rarely go as planned.

Of course this was true yesterday as well.

Setting up was nothing like I thought it would be.

But God had spoken to my heart ahead of time and I knew He wanted me to be flexible and at peace no matter the circumstances.

I’m glad He did.

Because I really hadn’t expected to be one of the cheering section.

I thought my name was on the “play” roster.

But God knows when it’s best to “bench” someone and that was me.

So, I was really glad I had pictures of things to show the players.

Not everything stayed as I had planned, but that’s fine.

It’s lovely.

I’m praying for all the details to come together smoothly today.

That our daughter will be blessed as well as her husband.

I’m praying for both families as we let go of our children into a new family of their own.

I’m praying for the Lord to touch the hearts of those attending.

I’m praying for…

Well, you get the idea.

The longer I walk with the Lord the more I realize just how little I know what is best.

My plans and ideas are so far from the knowledge of God.

So, when He changes the game, I need to enjoy the position He’s given me.

Yes, at times I’m disappointed.

But that too can be an opportunity for the Lord, if I’m willing to let go.

I’m looking forward to seeing how God is going to direct today.

After all,

I want to enjoy this special day for my little Bell.

She’s beginning a journey of a lifetime.

It’s one I’m so blessed to be called as well:

Wife.

And the Lord God said, “ It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”
Genesis 2:18 NKJV

Truly, God’s ways are best!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for the institution of marriage. Thank You for my husband and how blessed I am to be his wife. Thank You for walking with our two oldest daughters and giving them husbands. Please guide each if them. Lord, hold them in Your paths and teach them how to walk with You in all things. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your love. Thank You for walking with us each and every day. Today belongs to You. May we glorify Your name in all we do. Thank You. Amen.

It’s raining

Which seems fitting.

In all our activities of packing yesterday evening, I forgot to water the garden.

Tim and Sis left before dawn to travel down.

Tim still has to work (he travels all over the state) and it’s easier for them to travel when the babe is sleeping.

All the wedding things were carefully packed into the trailer.

We double checked everything.

Today, I’ll be heading to Sis’s garden to cut the flowers she’s been growing.

I’ll head down early tomorrow morning.

My sister grew a lot of flowers for the wedding as well.

It’s nice that the gardens will get a good soak before I have to start chopping.

I know that a little rain might damage a few, but why worry?

Although our weeks and days have been filled with planning, changes, purchases, and working, none of this is what is important.

Pictures and decorations are all nice, but they are not the priority.

The truth is, the wedding is really a tiny moment on the timeline.

The priority of Saturday is the beginning of a marriage.

Marriage is a holy institution created by God from the beginning of man’s history.

It is the building block God chose to start all of society.

It’s where we find the future generation being nurtured or neglected.

A healthy marriage is a product of two people and God.

It takes all three for it to work exactly as God designed it.

As Mom, I want each of our children to enjoy a healthy marriage.

Of course, it’s not up to me.

But I have been and will continue to be praying for all of our children, those married, those yet to marry, and those about to be married.

I’m praying for them as individuals.

That they would seek God with their whole heart every single day.

Matthew 22:37-39 NKJV — Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’”

It’s the best way to walk in marriage; complete devotion to Jesus and loving others more than oneself.

And it’s reward is beyond anything this world has to offer.

Because this life is temporary, but life with Jesus is eternal.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for the rain. Thank You for the truth You are gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy. Thank You for being good to all. For supplying our daily needs. Thank You for numbering our days and knowing the plans You have for each one of us. Thank You for loving us more than we can ever imagine. Thank You for new beginnings. May our lives bring glory to Your name, Jesus. Amen.

Not a typical Monday

What is so different about this Monday?

Well, some things are pretty routine.

I’ll water the garden and eat breakfast.

I’ll be praying and writing.

Yet, this week’s schedule will color all I do.

Because on Saturday our girl is getting married.

I’m very thankful to the Lord for this!

He has been so faithful to us.

He has guided us through all the preparation and here we stand on the brink with very little to do before set-up day.

Of course, we have to travel down and since “running home for…” is out of the question, I’m checking our packing again.

Sis helped me go through the decorations yesterday.

She’s the wedding coordinator and therefore it’s important she understands all the details.

I’ll be asking Anne and Jase to pack their things today.

It’s a shot day, and I’m praying.

Sometimes shots make me very tired.

We are expecting visitors today and tomorrow.

So, I’ll have to plan a few meals.

Throughout all these things, one thing is foremost on my heart.

It’s something God talked to me about at the beginning.

Enjoy the journey, don’t rush through just to get through.

I want to focus on praising the Lord no matter what.

Marriage is His blessing.

He  who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the Lord .
Proverbs 18:22 NKJV

My heart’s desire is to be free from worry and stress during this.

To simply walk in peace and thanksgiving to God.

Because I know, He has all the details in His hand.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for everything You have already done. Thank You for walking with us each and every day. Lord, I don’t know what today holds, but I know I can rest in You throughout. Your will is perfect and although I have my own ideas and plans, I surrender them before You. Please help me to walk with You in all things and to be gracious, patient, and loving. Thank You for this journey. Thank You for Your love. Amen.

Every detail

Although the days are flying past and the wedding date is rushing upon us I wasn’t concerned.

My husband’s outfit hadn’t been purchased yet, but I was trusting in the Lord.

He had already spoken to my heart about it.

In fact it had been more than once that His gentle voice said,

Do not worry, I have it all in hand.

So, when my husband looked at me on Saturday and said, “Let’s go buy my outfit for the wedding,” I was excited, but not anxious.

When we arrived at the store, I realized I had forgotten my dress.

My husband suggested we go look anyway.

After all it doesn’t have to match exactly.

To our pleasure and surprise he found some slacks which were not only a great color, but also on sale!

From there we headed to the ties.

I’d been praying for my hubby since we got up that morning.

He has a bad back and he’s been suffering neck pain for a while now.

I could tell his neck was really hurting.

So my mind wasn’t on the shopping.

I think that’s why it caught me off guard.

We found the ties.

Blues, black, tan,…no gray, not even one.

“Well,…we can try somewhere else.”

“No, I think I have a gray tie that will work.”

My brow crinkled up as I tried to recall all the ties in the closet.

Unfortunately, I didn’t just trust my husband to know what he was talking about, nor did I stop and pray.

“Babe, the only gray tie you have is the one from my dad and it won’t work.”

He didn’t argue.

He turned toward the check out and said, “I need to go.”

I realized he was hurting.

I saw that I’d stopped trusting.

I began to pray silently.

We had other stops to make and when we reached home he tried on his pants.

My time in prayer had restored my peace.

The slacks were very nice.

His white dress shirt went well.

He retreated to the closet to find his ties.

I followed, just because.

To my surprise and delight he drew out a beautiful gray tie with stripes.

Honestly, I don’t remember ever seeing it before and said so.

“I got this for Oreste’s wedding.”

It matched perfectly.

When my husband went to Oreste’s wedding, our Bell went too.

It is a special memory.

This tie is so much more meaningful than a new one from the store.

As I fingered it, I remembered the Lord’s voice.

And thanked Him for all His faithfulness.

He truly has every detail in His hand.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for this added blessing of the tie which will hold even more memories as my husband walks our daughter down the aisle. Lord, truly You are the beginning and the end, and Your understanding is beyond anything I could ever imagine. Thank You for bringing something so small into the last pieces of the planning. Thank You for loving us so much. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

Finishing touches

We are making a few little things for the wedding.

Yesterday, we were rolling napkins, Sis and I.

Handsome had made me over a hundred and sixty yellow paper circles to serve as napkin rings.

I enjoyed sitting across the table from Sis rolling napkins.

She talked about her time as a waitress while we worked.

Later, it was Jase and Anne sitting around the table with me.

Anne and I were folding pinwheels from gray paper and Jase was tracing holders for the flower petals.

(We are not allowed to throw rice or birdseed, so we will be throwing rose petals.)

Today, along with homeschooling, I’m hoping to finish the pinwheels.

I’m also planning on doing some staging.

Since we live so far away from the bride, she can’t see the decor.

Therefore, I’m going to set one table up with all the items and take a picture and send it to her.

I plan on doing this for all the decor that I can.

These pictures will be with lists of the items required, inside numbered totes.

I’ve been putting together totes with numbers to correspond with my decor list.

The plan is to have all of it together for when we go to set up.

That way I am not trying to explain each area, nor handle everything myself.

Hopefully, it will streamline both the setting up and the taking down.

It’s been such a journey.

Learning to live differently.

I’ll be honest, sometimes I feel frustrated over all the limitations.

But each time I do, it’s like a warning light.

Reminding me that’s not the proper way to see it.

God has allowed all these changes and many of them I’m very thankful for.

I think of Job’s words:

Job 2:10 KJV — But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.

Job didn’t sin with his lips, because his heart was right before God.

He didn’t understand all the changes in his life, but he served God faithfully.

I want to walk in the same way.

To accept either “good” or “bad” in life as an opportunity to walk with the Lord.

Because most of the time, my perspective calls something either “good” or “bad” depending upon how I feel or perceive it.

Obviously, God’s view point is far superior.

As we put the finishing touches on the last details for the wedding, I want to remember.

No matter how it all comes together nor how different it all has to be due to the current restrictions, it’s a wonderful moment.

The beginning of a new family.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for all the changes. Thank You for allowing the things I do not always understand nor want. For I know I can trust You completely. Lord, thank You for teaching me and my family so much through all these changes. Please continue to hone our hearts, to guide our steps, and to guard our words, that we might not sin against You. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

“Oh dear…”

It began with the box arriving.

We’ve been waiting for the bridesmaids’ dresses for a while.

It’s understandable that it takes time to make them, and then more time to ship.

As I took out each dress and hung them up, I thanked the Lord.

One step closer!

But hours later, Sis came over to try on her dress.

“Mom, I want you to see me in my dress.”

“Okay, give me a minute.”

I walked in and just stopped.

“Oh dear…”

“What can we do?”

Ordinarily, I’d be cheerfully trying to figure out how to tuck or alter it.

But I just stood there.

After a few moments, I walked over and tried feebly to pinch the sides or tuck it.

I really didn’t give it much effort.

I’m very far from a seamstress.

But I know enough about sewing to know there was no hope on this.

Sis had me take pictures and she texted them to a seamstress.

Afterwards she called and the verdict was final.

Return it.

There was nothing else to do, but search for a new dress.

Sis is eight months pregnant.

It was a bit daunting to even think about where we might find a dress that would match the wedding and allow for her growing baby bump.

I began to search the internet for nearby stores, while Sis called her husband to relate the turn of events.

He was as supportive as ever.

Sis then called the different numbers I’d found, in search of an opening.

(For those not versed in Bridal stores, they frown on walk-ins or refuse them completely.)

We were both surprised and pleased to find a store with an appointment at 4:30.

I texted my husband, to let him know.

Left instructions for the rest of the afternoon with Jase and Anne then hopped in Sis’s SUV.

I texted a friend asking for prayer for this.

The ladies at the store were very kind and understanding.

They went right to work trying to find something.

After about six dresses, I was feeling a bit concerned.

Our sweet grandbaby was getting tired of the store.

Nothing was really working.

And I knew I was going to be needing to head home before too much longer.

The next dress in the lineup caused me to look at it twice.

Sis looked at it and said, “Mom, that looks like it will fit you, not me.”

The lady in the store told us the dress size.

Our eyebrows shot up.

“Well, I guess I can try it.”

We were very glad she did.

Although she did try on others, she purchased that one.

Just as we were driving away, my phone buzzed.

My friend had texted me she was praying for us.

I smiled.

Texted her back.

God had answered.

Not only had He provided a dress, it was on major sale and she got it for just over half what she paid on the first one.

Praise God!

It’s details like this which point me back to Jesus.

My mind can’t even guess the odds of finding a dress which fits perfectly, allows room for baby bump to grow, looks lovely, matches the wedding colors and style, and was on Clearance.

“Praise God, Sis! This is a miracle!”

As always, if we trust in the Lord, He will sort out every detail.

No, it won’t always be what we think we want, but it will be exactly what we need.

Philippians 4:19 KJV — But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for providing for us. Thank You for walking us through these things and guiding the details. Lord, I know You have all things in Your hands. Lord Jesus, please help me to continue to praise You no matter the circumstances. Please continue to teach me to rest in Your will for every detail of life. Thank You for this new family, our daughter and soon to be son-in-law. Please bless them, their marriage, and their ministry as a husband and wife. Thank You, for all of this, Jesus. Amen.

Rejoicing in the day-to-day

Boy!

This was a long time ago.

I ran across this while searching for something else.

So many memories return with a look at our girls grown big before they were large.

How does it happen so fast?

You simply try to deal with life day in and day out while the miracle of childhood turns into the blessings of adulthood.

And suddenly:

Those tiny fingers and messy heads and snuggly cuddly bodies have stretched out.

You look and see not a child.

And it’s a common phenomenon.

On Saturday we traveled to a wedding ceremony for a man who we used to know as a little boy.

He too stretched out and changed in the day-to-day growth of children.

But I haven’t forgotten the little boy that he once was.

My voice was absent as I hugged him, all polished and ready for this major life change.

But he looked down on this tiny lady who loves him and said, “I love you”.

I signed, “I love you” hugged him again and let him return to his duties.

What a joy!

To daily walk in this miracle of children growing into men and women.

Only God could come up with such a wonderful blessing as babies to child to adult.

What an incredible honor to have years of daily opportunities to instill character into the future generation.

Of course we can only do that through Jesus.

He’s the One who guides, leads, and directs us, we simply have the privilege of holding, comforting, caring, and training those littles He for so brief a time.

And He adds the blessings of loving other littles too.

Children of our friends or church family.

Neighborhood children or those I was blessed to work with.

So many opportunities to share Jesus with those who have yet to leave childhood behind.

As I cherish memories of my children’s childhood, I praise God for the day-to-day.

Praising Him for today and all those which have come before.

Psalm 35:28 KJV — And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for today! Thank You for all the days we have shared with our children and with others. Thank You for pouring into our lives. Please continue to guide, direct, and teach us as we purpose to do the same with our remaining two who still live with us. Lord, please shine Your truth into other parents, that they might use these precious years of childhood to raise amazing adults. Thank You for Your love of children. Thank You for Your love of each one of us. Thank You for all You are doing day-to-day in our lives. We love You, Jesus. Amen.

Count down

image

It will be here.

The ceremony.

You probably can’t tell, but this is a cow pasture.

However, this Saturday it will be a wedding.

Since we are working with our daughter and her to be hubby on the wedding I feel very much the count down.

What are the final details?

Whose driving the bride’s maids to the venue?

What was the price of…?

Yet when we were cleaning the cow manure from the area which will soon hold hay bales and guests, I kept thinking about all that still needed to be done.

I wish I hadn’t.

Throughout this process I have wanted to simply enjoy the pieces which will make the end result.

Since, I can’t go back to change yesterday or before, I am praying today.

I want to stay centered on the joys.

I want to focus on the blessings.

I want to honor God throughout the process.

After all none of this would be possible without Him.

He has been faithful daily in each step.

I keep being drawn back to Psalm 150.

“Praise the LORD!
Praise God in His sanctuary;
Praise Him in His mighty firmament!
Praise Him for His mighty acts;
Praise Him according to His excellent greatness!
Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet;
Praise Him with the lute and harp!
Praise Him with the timbrel and dance;
Praise Him with the stringed instruments and flutes!
Praise Him with loud cymbals;
Praise Him with clashing cymbals!
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD.
Praise the LORD!”

This is my heart’s desire.

That in everything, every step, every piece, I can praise the Lord! 

Where’s the BANG?

image

The fireworks were lovely.

As I sat in my folding camp chair holding hands with my hubby,
I was thankful.

Living where we do is a blessing.

Literally the show was five minutes from our house and when it was over we said goodbye to some friends and neighbors.

As we drove home I thought about the year I was too sick to come and how much I’d missed it.

I thought about the way our lives are changing.

I thought about the year we lived overseas and how much our family missed the celebration.

And I nearly cried.

I realized last year was the last time all our children would celebrate 4th of July together.

I didn’t know it at the time.

None of us could have understood the changes which were a mere year away.

Our oldest girl wasn’t with us at the celebration, because she was enjoying a special seat with the young man she’s going to marry.

Next year they will more than likely be moving away before the 4th.

Where was the bang?

What happened to the change in music?

I don’t know why but I think I’ve been expecting something to “signal” me to the fact that my daughter is an adult.

Like the high pitched screech of a firework or the bright colorful lights bursting in the sky I thought raising our kids would end with a big finale.

It hasn’t.

Although as the wedding draws ever closer, it feels like a big thing, but it doesn’t feel like end as much as beginning.

I keep looking at our girl and to-be-son and think, “Wow!  A new family!” not “Wow! I finally got one raised.”.

Maybe I’ve watched too many movies and was waiting for the music change to let me know it had come.

The bang moment of being completed with child and the beginning of adult.

Funny, I didn’t hear any bang when I grew up.

Of course I’m not sure I’ve finished growing up either.

The longer I live the more I see how much I still have to learn.

So that must be why there’s nothing to tell me when I’m finished.

Even though she’s an adult doesn’t mean she finished growing.

Even though she’s no longer in my home doesn’t mean she won’t want to know her mom loves her.

If God is still working on me, He will work on her as well.

We can learn to walk a new path as sisters in Christ, while still understanding our history together.

So, on with a new way to stretch, to trust Jesus, and a new way to walk.

I might be finished with the everyday parenting task, but I don’t have to be finished with loving our girl.

In fact it’s the opposite.

Now I get a new son to love as well!

Dear Jesus,

Please bless our daughter and her husband as they seek You and begin a new family on their wedding day. Place Your hand upon them and give them an over flow of love for each other and a desire to center their lives and relationship upon You and Your word. Thank You for walking them this far. Thank you for walking me this far.
May our lives bring glory to Your name, Jesus.

Amen.