Recently I attended the beautiful wedding of one of our members in Lambertville and Princeton, New Jersey. I was inspired by the sight of them and the hope of new life springing forth.
As I listened to them repeat their vows – vows I said myself many years ago and have asked others to repeat more times than I can remember – I could not help but be reminded of how powerful the words actually are: for better, for worse; for richer, for poorer; in sickness and in health forever – is what they jokingly said to one another instead of the traditional “till death do us part.”
Either way, it seems like a long time, doesn’t it? Almost anyone can journey together for a short while or for better, richer, and in good health, but who can imagine the other extreme? Who can imagine the worse that life can bring? The depth of financial, spiritual, or emotional poverty? Or the vulnerability and fear of being sick with all of its complexities?
These words are made in the dark, not knowing; a commitment into the unknown. And yet I can think of few things more noble than two people making such claims and doing the good hard work of living it out day by day as best they can to the glory of God. It occurs to me that anyone so brave and willing–regardless of sexual orientation, race, gender, or any other identities that we might impose–should have every right to do so.
I think it is no small matter that Jesus’ first miracle was turning water into wine at a wedding in Cana, reminding us of the joy of giving ourselves to another so that something much larger might be created. On this good Friday, I’m taking my hat off to marital love and all of those heading in that direction – for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health forever and ever and ever.
Grace and peace,