Jump Start # 3057
Matthew 19:5 “and said, ‘For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and shall leave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh.”
Spring is the time for flowers, getting outside and for around this year, weddings. We have many weddings in our church family. I’m doing some of them and others I’ll just be smiling from the audience. I like weddings, especially when they are someone else’s to deal with. All of our kids are married. There are so many choices to make and decisions to be decided upon. Details, details, and more details. Weddings can really be stressful, especially when they are outside because changing the weather is something only Jesus can do.
What happens after the wedding? The gifts have been given. The cake has been eaten. Everyone has gone home. Now, what? There are some lessons that we need to remember. What happens after the wedding?
First, there is a marriage to be lived. The wedding is one day. The marriage is for a lifetime. I fear that some pour so much into having the perfect wedding that they settle for having a subpar marriage. After the wedding, it’s back to work. There are bills to pay. There are plans and dreams to be lived. There are the day to day things of life. Not everyday is exciting like the wedding day. Some days are just plain ordinary days, nothing special. Life is made up of many ordinary days. But what makes those ordinary days extraordinary are what we put into those days. Pack them with such things as: Kindness, character, heart, love, grace, and especially forgiveness.
After the wedding, there is a marriage to be lived.
Second, after the wedding, there is a God to be honored. It’s fairly common to have some prayers and Bible readings at a wedding. Those things fit because it was God who came up with the idea of marriage, not us. Since God designed marriage, we ought to not only invite God to the wedding, but into our homes after the wedding. There is a God that needs to be worshipped. There are people to be encouraged. There are those who need to be taught. As a newly married couple, it’s time to start putting in place the values that mean so much. Together as a new couple, begin some great spiritual habits together. Get down to the church house early. Have some folks over for hospitality. Plug into the teaching program. You are establishing your own home, your own habits, and your own path. No longer are you tagging along with your parents. Branch out. Spread your wings. Use your talents. Honor the Lord. After the wedding, there is a God to be honored.
Third, a new chapter for parents begin. This new chapter is hard. Unless thought out carefully, parents that mean well, can become a major problem in the newly married couple’s life. The young couple can only spread their wings, if we parents will allow them. Expecting, even demanding, with some added guilt on top, that they go out to eat with you every week is too much. Just because the family always took a vacation together, doesn’t mean that the young couple will. Give them some room, space and a chance to breathe. Let them make some of their own decisions. Smothering parents can force a young man or a young woman to have to choose between the parents or their spouse. They shouldn’t be put in that place. A vacation without them. A holiday alone. Those are the things that some parents struggle with. When Jesus said that a man should leave his father and mother, he was not talking about the location of his home. He was talking about maturity, responsibility and establishing your own way. But a man can only leave his father and mother, if the father and mother will let him go. Some of us don’t do that. We want to tag along, and express our thoughts, insights and opinions to nearly everything they do. That smothers.
We have found that unless our kids are doing something that would hurt their souls, we try to stay out of their lives. If they ask for our advice, we will offer it, but otherwise we try to keep quiet. So, they do things I wouldn’t do. Can they go to Heaven that way? Yes. Then stay out of their business. It’s hard, but it’s the best. We wouldn’t want someone interfering in what we do.
Fourth, there is a Heaven that must be sought. The wedding ends, but the journey to Heaven never does. Choices. Friends. Jobs. Churches. So much comes through our lives. Keeping Heaven in the forefront will help one navigate safely through those things. Growing together. Praying together. Being active together in a church. Helping each other get to Heaven is the key to keeping the marriage where it ought to be. Never forget the Lord. Never forget what the Lord expects. When one is down, the other can encourage the discouraged and help him get back to where he ought to be. Perspective. Discernment. Seeking. All of those things go together when Heaven is being sought.
The wedding. You’ll remember that day and the date. A lot of hours were poured into those few minutes at the wedding. But it’s after the wedding that really matters.