Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Circle Game

In four months, I'll preach my next weeding. The bride will be Tiffany, another of my former students. This is from October 8, 2012.
I'm in this picture taken Saturday afternoon; you just can't see me behind the deliriously happy newlyweds! I had just uttered the most popular words at any wedding:
"(Tyler) you may kiss the bride!" 

Sarah took this shot and I don't mind using it without permission because two and a half years ago, I preached her wedding and said the same words to Dennis, her groom, and that sentence elicited the same response. This time,  it was Charlotte who was the recipient of the kiss.

Yesterday I spoke about practicing Charlotte's and Tyler's wedding with three of my classes but there is one thing we didn't rehearse and it's the toughest question at any wedding. Forty-eight hours ago, it was worded like this:
"Who gives Charlotte to be married to Tyler?"
It was tough on Charlotte's dad, Chuck, but he got through it like dad's always get through it. You want it to be tough- that's kind of the magic of the moment, isn't it? (My dad, who preached countless weddings, was of the opinion that there should be a converse ritual in which the mother of the groom symbolically releases him to the new most important woman in his life.) You know what's interesting? There are only two people who really get a clear look at the father when he's giving his daughter away to another man: There's me, who asked the question and there's the soon-to-be-son-in-law, who asked the question that led to my question. It's a private moment in a public affair and it's a tradition that never needs to become outdated. 

I've mentioned before that I always include the chorus of The Circle Game by Joni Mitchell in my remarks. Her words reflect the love and joy and wonder and angst of the nostalgic parent as he or she see their baby all grown up, having stepped over the threshold into the adult world. I've included a wonderful version of Joni singing this classic ballad, set to pictures that grab my heart, even though I've never been blessed with children of my own. I can see my parents seeing me in every verse...... and I know it went by too fast for me, and I bet for all of you as well. This is for all of the moms and dads....... and all the future moms and dads. I hope you all kiss your little ones good night tonight even if they aren't little anymore. Many of us would give anything for one more kiss from our parents who've gone 

Applicable quote of the day:
“Sorrow is so easy to express and yet so hard to tell.”
Joni Mitchell

God bless,

Luke 18:1
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