In the final week leading up to Easter, commonly known as “Passion Week” or “Holy Week”, we walk with Jesus through the final week of his life. It helps us experience both death and resurrection in deeper ways. We hope you will join us each day this week as we head toward resurrection.
No one tells you this at the time, but the week before your wedding sucks.
Now admittedly, my bride-t0-be and her mother took care of most (OK, dang near all) of the details. But there is so much minutiae that must be taken care of in order to pull off a wedding. There’s decisions to be made about the ceremony. Details to be pored over. Preparations to be made as two people join their furniture and clothes and appliances into one small house. And of course premarital counseling to finish.
It’s easy to feel s0 buried under the mountain of components that you cannot see the finish line. At some point you just want to get it over with.
But then there is that moment. And honestly, I was not prepared for it. When the doors of the chapel opened and Staci began walking down that aisle, I wasn’t thinking about the flowers or the music or the photographer or the lighting. In a room full of hundreds of people, it was just her and I.
Because I wasn’t getting a wedding; I was getting wife.
And in that instant, everything came into focus — the memories of falling in love, the anticipation of our life together, the scared-as-crap realization that this person would be depending on me (ME!) to help her make sense of life, the realization that I would literally die for this woman. All of the worry and work of the weeks and months made sense because of that moment.
There’s this beautiful passage in Revelation 19 that describes a similar scene:
“Praise the Lord!
For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.
Let us be glad and rejoice,
and let us give honor to him.
For the time has come for the wedding feast of the Lamb,
and his bride has prepared herself.
She has been given the finest of pure white linen to wear.”
For the fine linen represents the good deeds of God’s holy people.
Christ the bridegroom gazing upon the bride that has been prepared for him. What a beautiful climax. We need this scene to make sense of the story.
Every year Lent is like an arduous journey for me. It takes me through the valley of death and makes me deal with my selfishness and greed. Lent asks so much of me and honestly, I find it difficult to give. Sometimes I just want it to be over.
Lent is like the week before the wedding.
And then Easter comes. And I am reminded that this isn’t just about me. And it’s not about the tasks and the fasting and the devotion.
Because I’m not getting religion; I am getting a Savior.
Easter hints at the climactic moment – at the Revelation 19 scene when a groom will look upon his bride. And will not be about the tasks or the details. It will be about he and I (and you). It will be in that moment when everything will come into focus.
There is a purpose to all of this. There is reason to the madness. There is payoff to all of the expectation.
In the end, we get Jesus. What a wonderful story to be a part of.