I MARRIED MY BROTHER!
Well, you know what I mean! I “officiated” his wedding, you know??! On July 21, in the mountains near Boulder, CO, he married an awesome gal; Amanda, and all my brothers got to be a part of the amazing celebration. Here’s us hoisting the main-man; Aaron, and me behind the podium, pronouncing them “husband and wife”!
It was an amazing day – marked by God’s joy and presence. Everything went totally smooth. The most stressful part for me was coming up with a wedding message of some sort. I was stoked though, because I really felt like God gave me a challenge and encouragement to share. Here’s my transcript. A few people told me that as I was speaking, far off lightning was shooting through the dramatic cloud formations! God is so cooooooool!!!
“….Your beauty and love chase after me everyday of my life….”
Have you thought about that lately? Would you say you sense His beauty and love chasing after you every day? Maybe some of us have never thought about it in that way. Well, I mean, this is a truly beautiful day, isn’t it? A truly beautiful moment – that we’ve all been brought together to witness.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about beauty…maybe that’s the kind of thing you do when you’re pushing 40!
REAL beauty is something special and unique. People try to manufacture beauty all the time, in every possible way, but somehow in the end, that kind of beauty fades, rusts, runs out, or goes out of style, but what we have here today is something different; A kind of beauty designed and created by God. Marriage; the act of joining two lives together, two becoming one, it’s God’s idea, a work of his artistic genius!
Mark 10:5-6 (The Message)
In the original creation, God made male and female to be together. Because of this, a man leaves father and mother, and in marriage he becomes one flesh with a woman—no longer two individuals, but forming a new unity. Because God created this organic union of the two sexes, no one should desecrate his art by cutting them apart.”
That phrase; “God’s art” has got me doing a lot of noticing lately. I’ve been struck in new ways by His incredible design for beauty.
Here’s how Psalm 111 says it;
God’s works are so great, worth A lifetime of study—endless enjoyment! Splendor and beauty mark his craft; His generosity never gives out. His miracles are his memorial— This God of Grace, this God of Love. He gave food to those who fear him, He remembered to keep his ancient promise. He proved to his people that he could do what he said: Hand them the nations on a platter—a gift! He manufactures truth and justice; All his products are guaranteed to last— Never out-of-date, never obsolete, rust-proof. All that he makes and does is honest and true.
In Matthew 6, Jesus is quoted as saying:
All this time and money wasted on fashion—do you think it makes that much difference? Instead of looking at the fashions, walk out into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They never primp or shop, but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them.
Being in the mountains here, I’m amazed at the greenery, the crisp air, the sky’s intricate patterns. Where we live in California, I’ve picked up on a few things lately as well; the sparkling diamonds of light shimmering off the ocean’s surface, the tapestry like patterns of dark and light sand in the shore-break, the colorful streaks of a sunset, and the thundering power of Yosemite Falls…all examples of God’s unique eye for beauty and design – and it really outclasses every other work of art out there, doesn’t it?
Today, it’s like I want to take out a big spotlight and shine it on the Flat Irons at dusk and say, “Look! God’s beauty on display!” Or take it and shine on the pure smile of a child swinging on a swing, and say, “Look over here…God’s beauty!” and I want to take that same spotlight and shine it on this couple standing before you today and all that this moment signifies and represents, and say, “Look! God’s beauty on display!”
One thing unique about God’s art is that it is a “dynamic” art…almost like “performance art”; unlike a painting or a statue, God’s art moves, it’s a show!, it dances, it changes, in fact it never stays the same and is never exactly repeated. The Bible says that God created and designed us, everyone here, Aaron and Amanda, with this same artist’s eye and attention to detail. We are all growing and changing, inside and out. Some of us excited about getting older…some of us not so much. Some of us may be getting wiser, stronger, taller…or maybe more humble, weaker, maybe even a little shorter…but it’s ALL God’s design and His beauty is threaded through it all. Aaron and Amanda, take a look at each other for a moment…ahhh… You’re really good looking right now! The truth is; you are both setting out on an adventurous journey of change, with God as the director and chief architect. And as we learn to accept, rest and trust in God’s artistic design, this beautiful dance of change and growth, we will find His art will surprise us. He loves you so much! He has your best in mind, every step of the way.
Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church—a love marked by giving, not getting. Christ’s love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness. And that is how husbands ought to love their wives. They’re really doing themselves a favor—since they’re already “one” in marriage. (ending on a practical note for the guys!)
1 Peter 3:1
The same goes for you wives: Be good wives to your husbands, responsive to their needs. There are husbands who, indifferent as they are to any words about God, will be captivated by your life of holy beauty. What matters is not your outer appearance—the styling of your hair, the jewelry you wear, the cut of your clothes—but your inner disposition.
I would like to challenge us all to embrace what God is up to here – His loving design in our lives and His beauty all around us…
God has put together this day and all it stands for. Let’s protect it, let’s preserve it, let’s not trash God’s unique, original, organic handiwork here today.
May we all have wide-open hearts to God’s loving design.
May we cherish, respond to, and honor God’s art here and all around us.
And may His beauty and love chase after us everyday of our lives.