Thursday, May 29, 2014

When Your Flower Girl Becomes a Bride

It rained all week, but the forecast for Saturday was sunny.  I even took a screen shot of the forecast and sent it to my niece because her wedding was planned for the outdoors.  We were all happy and ready for the sun!

Saturday arrived, though, and it was wet.  All morning.  All afternoon.  I was nervous on her behalf but prayed, along with the rest of the family, for the skies to clear in time for the ceremony, which was scheduled for six o'clock.

4:30 came and we drove to the venue to help with preparations.  My sweet 9 year old was a flower girl and, oh, the excitement as we neared the Gardens at West Green and the sprinkles stopped!  The tents were not up!  The twinkle lights in the trees stood ready to illuminate the magical moments that were about to happen.  My girl was in awe.  It was beautiful.

We went upstairs to find the bridal party and join in the pre-wedding fun.  Makeup and hair (BIG Texas hair!) was in full swing and my daughter stood in her ivory lace dress, taking it all in.  She is the romantic of my bunch.  This was right up her alley.

And all along I was looking at her, remembering my wedding day.  I smiled at my daughter and sighed that 18 years had gone by and now my daughter was a flower girl...for my flower girl.

wedding, flower girl, christmas, bride
My wedding day, when my niece was my flower girl.

and now...
the gardens at west green, flower girls, dresses, outdoor wedding
My daughter and her little cousin on my niece's wedding day.

bride, groom, kiss, wedding, the gradens at west green, wedding dress,  mermaid gown, tuxedo
The sweet couple, sealing what God has done with a kiss.
I might have cried when she put on that dress.  She was absolutely beautiful...radiant.  

A little while later, my sister-in-law (the bride's mama) asked if my oldest daughter and I would take the big bags of flower petals and line the aisle before the guests arrived.  We found the bags and went outside to do what was a simple task that turned out to be profound in my heart.  I knelt down with my hand full of white rose petals and I was struck:

Jesus, our Savior, riding into Jerusalem on a donkey...the streets lined with palm branches to honor the King.

Jesus...our groom, awaiting his Bride, his chosen.  Preparing a place for us, preparing a feast to celebrate the marriage supper of the Lamb.  On that day, all of our baggage will be laid aside.  It will no longer matter that we were faulty, that we often forgot who we were and Whose we were.  What will matter to our groom will be that moment when we behold Him, wearing robes of pure white and faces radiant with His glory.

Laying down those petals suddenly became a holy task in my heart.  It was an honor to prepare the path for my niece, to watch her bite her lip to hold back tears as she laid eyes on her groom and to see him jam his hands into his pockets and take long, deep breaths through the lump in his throat because of the beauty that floated down the flower-lined aisle to him.  Only to him.

In this day when marriage is attacked and family is redefined, I take hope in moments like these when a couple can stand before those who love them most and promise forever...and mean it.  They come from a legacy of love, of families who stay the course...Grandmas and Grandpas and parents who have been married for a lifetime and love each other even more now than then.  These two, they are going to make it.  

They have us and they have Jesus.  

We've got their back and love wins.

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