Most girls spend years dreaming of their wedding days. Or so the story goes. I dreamed about where I’d go to school and what I’d study. My big book of college profiles was worn and dogeared, a compass intended to point me in the right direction after high school graduation.
Just when I thought I’d figured it out—in May of my senior year with an acceptance letter from an Ivy League college in hand—I met the 17-year-old brother of a friend from a rival high school and everything changed.
I fell so hard and so fast that by August it was difficult to load up the U-Haul with my family and drive 1800 miles from home. From him. As much as I loved the school and the new friends made, nothing could overcome the constant ache in my heart. We became engaged the following March and married in October, in that New Hampshire town where he’d gone with me back to school and rented a basement apartment nearby.
Although I never doubted the man I chose, for years I’d sit in the pew at weddings and wonder if I missed something getting married in a school chapel, in a dress I bought off the rack in that college town, with the justice of the peace presiding and a school newspaper photographer.
Sometimes I’d begrudge the bride who’d return from her honeymoon to move into a new house. Our first four children were born before we owned an actual home of our own.
I’d forgotten that God specializes in conceiving great things from humble beginnings: a shepherd boy who would be king of Israel; a Jewish orphan who would become the queen of Persia and save her people; his own son, born in a manger inside a stable.
Whether your wedding was big and fancy, small and simple, or hasn’t yet occurred, let me share these truths:
Your wedding isn’t about the dress or the reception. It’s about the man. The vows.
You marriage isn’t about where you live or what you drive. It’s about loving your husband (which is commanded of us, as an act of the will). Two becoming one flesh. Commitment.
Don’t be ashamed of simple beginnings (or simple middles and endings, for that matter). Sometimes happily ever after doesn’t start out in a way that you planned or could ever imagine. Pray for God’s blessings upon your marriage ” . . . and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” ~Hebrews 13:5
Do you have a story where God turned a simple beginning into so much more?
by Dawn Camp, who loves that same man just as fiercely 8 kids and nearly 27 years later