This old phrase has come to my mind lately. Looking back on the past few months, it is so true.
I guess when I planned my own wedding I must have been young and foolish, or had stars in my eyes, because back then I sure didn’t seem to notice or fret too much about all that was involved in the process. (Of course, my wedding guest list was about a third of what my daughter's is.) And this time around, I have become so aware (and worried way too much over) the many wedding etiquette rules that are so easily broken!
I believe some of this is due to a cultural shift. My wedding was in the 70’s. I did not have a large extended family, and we were not socialites, so not having much to compare with, I think I just planned a wedding that worked for me and my groom’s situation at the time. My DH and I were upper twenty-somethings who had careers and had been living independently for some time. My mother had no interest in helping to plan my wedding, so there were very few conflicts in that regard. (Ironically, the one thing that sticks out in my mind about my mom in the planning stages was the difficulty she had in chosing her attire for the wedding! What goes around, comes around?)
I remember consulting some Bridal magazines for my own wedding planning, but that was about it. This was before the Great American Wedding Industry truly hit its stride. There was no Internet like today, where anything you want to know about weddings is just a Google away. There were no online Forums where people are anxious to give their two cents on whether something is proper or not, no David Tutera on TV to set the impossibly high bar for The Perfect Dream Wedding!
Reading back over my recent epic posts about choosing the Mother of the Bride dress, I am almost embarrassed. I don’t really regret recording all that happened as part of my journey of being a MOB for the first time. Hopefully it was somewhat amusing and entertaining to the reader. But, I acknowledge how trivial it was in the grand scheme of things.
My analysis has led me to believe I obsessed over finding my dress because it was the one thing about my daughter's wedding that was for the most part, in my control. The other parts of this process I have had to relinquish control, admittedly sometimes begrudgingly, to the couple whose lives will be forever changed on May 21, 2011.
How many times do I have to keep reminding myself, it is THEIR day. Their wishes are what counts here. They are the ones who need to shine, and rightfully so! And who cares if we don’t follow proper etiquette to the T – once again, we need to plan a day that works for our families, a celebration where everyone truly enjoys themselves! We want happy memories, not a bride and her mom who are frazzled and fretful.
I am also reminded that there is One who is ultimately in control, and orchestrating every step we are taking. He is the one who brought this couple together, and He is the one this couple acknowledges as being the strong Cord who will keep them united. (Knowing that about them brings me much joy!) We have to keep our eyes focused on Him, and remind ourselves that the important thing is to let His love and blessings shine through in this joyous occasion of bringing two people together as one. If we do that, the day will be successful.
After all, what is a wedding but a representation of Christ as the Bridegroom, and His unconditional love for His Bride, the Church? It is so exciting to think of the wedding reception as a foreshadowing of a Great Banquet we will one day enjoy with our loved ones and with our Lord at His table.
So yes, I confess that all too often in the last few months, the Devil has been in the details, because I have allowed the wedding details to take my focus off of what (and who) is really important in this blessed occasion!
For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. ... Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it… For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Ephesians 5: 23-25, 31-32 (KJV)