A place of writing and reflection…
Two months of engagement have quickly dwindled to only two weeks.
Clothes are bought. Music is picked. Diagrams drawn. I still have a list of things to do with a few hang ups here and there, but it’s all good.
And yet reality has still neglected to visit me.
Not to worry. I’m sure he’ll show up soon enough.
In the midst of the planning, however we have had our fun.
Sometime it’s been picking on our friends who are either in the same process or getting picked on ourselves—mainly for all the times I said, “I don’t like him.”
This week I was in a room full of those very same people—at my bridal shower. One such friend was even so kind as to write it in a letter included with the gift she had brought.
“Isn’t it true,” she asked with a mischievous grin.
The house was deck out in my two favorite things thanks to my closest friends: hot pink and zebra. There was a chocoholic’s dream cake decked out in the popular black and white stripes, Zebra marshmallows, balloons and crepe paper. There were even a few gifts wrapped up in my favorite pattern.
I had come home and cleaned right after work, only to be kicked downstairs to my now empty room while the bridal party decorated away upstairs. I had seen some of the decorations just before they got started but it looked so much better when they called me back up again.
I had posted on Facebook a day or two before, “I don’t think I’ve ever had my own party. This should be fun.” I think the closest I had was a comida for my twenty-fourth birthday my soon-to-be-famila did long before I moved to Heartland.
As people piled in my maid of honor gave a greeting and introduced me to everyone in case there were those who didn’t know me.
“You may not always see them out in spotlight, but they are always in the background serving, teaching, cooking at the Lodge or on worship team,” she said.
With that another one of our college leaders prayed over us in this up coming time and another blessed the food. It was the previous one prayer that struck me.
That God had held us both, Charles and I, as His and in the same turn determined that we belonged together as His.
I didn’t say anything, but I’ve heard lots of similar comments since our engagement. Yet this one caught me.
There was food and drinks and the it was time to open gifts.
Charles and I both love to cook, so there was plenty of cook ware, a recipe book, and utensils among decorations, frames and cards. There was also the toaster oven and bed set we both had wanted.
My fiancé had been a bit reluctant about setting it up, and I had pushed for it only because of the party, but neither of us had expected all this.
Normally I would have been crying my eyes out, but I couldn’t stop laughing after opening one particular gift.
I think I did rather miserable job thanking everybody after thinking about it later.
My fiancé had went to town that night and left our room open so we could fill it with the “loot” as Molly put it. We put a few things here and there and I tripped over a box left over from our unpacking. We set a few things where he would see them as soon as he got home and went to leave when we saw two kids tossing a toy car over the railing between his car and another. I figured I should move the Jeep and returned home to find the keys.
After a momentary search for a purse, one of my best friends grabbed leftover crepe paper, the keys and headed back to the room which we promptly littered.
The door handle was wrapped in paper and a portion of streamer hanging over the door, visible before you even opened it. Crepe paper was draped over some of the gifts, his closet and the book shelves as well as the huge piece of cake we left on the desk. Giggling like little girls, we hurried outside where I finally moved the Jeep though the kids from earlier were no where to be found.
Still laughing we headed back to the house for a good talk and to wait out the surprise we had left behind.
A few hours later I get a text.
“I just walked into the room. Wow.”
Initially, I thought he had been talking about our thorough decorating job, but I soon realized it wasn’t so much the zebra as it was the gifts.
You see, we live quite far from “home” as far as physical family is concerned—well over 700 miles to be exact. Yet over the years since moving here, Heartland has steadily become our new “home“. (And not a replacement home, either. )
Here we both went to Bible college, and though it wasn’t where we originally met, it is the place that has cemented our relationship. Were we elsewhere, we would not be the people we are today. We’d probably be ok, but I doubt we’d look anything like we do now.
The amazing thing is how much more we are seeing this place as home lately.
At a worship team meeting Charles was given word from a friend saying that he had a place there on the worship team and that he was needed. That they couldn’t do this without him and not because he’s got some super special ability nobody else has, but because he is a valuable part of the team—something he had been thinking about lately.
In the same meeting I was given a similar word.
I was there as support for my fiancé and some of our friends, but at the same time I was doubting just how much I really belonged there. I don’t play any particular role on the team. I’m a teacher, not a singer. I couldn’t carry a tune to save my life. Give me something to draw, sure, but not to sing.
Despite this fact, I was told that I was part of this family—this “family” being the worship team of course. I will soon be a part of Charles’ life which made me a part of the team as well.
The gifts we received the night of the shower are not just gifts. They are further confirmation of this “family” we have grown into and not just the worship team, but an entire community. They are a show of support from the very people who love us and want to this thing that God has put between us become all that it can be. Most of all, they are God’s elaborate display of love on us.
It’s like a massive fireworks display on the fourth of July or a giant banner hung on the back of a plane declaring, “That’s My boy and My girl and they’re getting married! Would you look at that?”
Yet even more so He’s not leaving us alone in this—instead He’s planted us in a body of believers to both seek help from in times of need and to help where we’re needed. How much more beautiful is that?
Copyright The Faithbook 2012