Wedding planning has been stressing me out lately.  The sheer magnitude of putting on a wedding hit me one day and made me panic just a little bit.  I’m not one of those women who has been dreaming of their wedding day since age 5, nor am I one of those women who enjoys being a hostess.  I have no idea how to plan a party, let alone an event as important and large as a wedding.  On top of that, I really don’t like being the center of attention.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not shy nor am I afraid to speak in front of a crowd.  I just don’t like being the “main event”, if you will.  I’m very private when it comes to my personal life.  After I acknowledged these two personality quirks, I questioned my sanity in wanting a good old-fashioned wedding.  What was I thinking?!?  What’s wrong with a Vegas wedding?  But it’s too late to consider that.  Too much money has been spent, invitations have been ordered, plane tickets have been purchased.  I’m over-the-moon excited to marry my best friend and I didn’t want to put a damper on our special day (or the days leading up to it) by having a bad attitude about it.  So instead of fretting so much, I decided to talk to God about it:

Phil 4:6: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

I know this Bible verse by heart, but getting it into my thick head is usually the problem.  Immediately, God gave me peace.  He reminded me that first of all, He is in charge.  Whew, good thing because my life would be a mess without Him!  Then He reminded me that the people who will be coming to our wedding are friends and family.  Each one of them is special to us in some way.  It’s not like we’ll be the center of attention in front of a bunch of strangers.  They’re all loved ones who care for us and are there to support us.  Same goes for my hostess anxiety: our guests are loved ones.  They are there to celebrate with us, not to critique and complain about every little detail of the wedding.  It’s going to be o.k. because at the end of it all, we’ll be married!  I’m so thankful that God is in control of it all.  I’m not going to lie:  I’m still much more excited about just being married to Eric than for the wedding day itself, but I think that’s o.k..  Especially now that I have been given a better perspective on our wedding day… We’re just so blessed to have so many people who want to celebrate with us!

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I realize this isn’t necessarily a wedding related post, but it’s something I’ve been thinking about for the past couple days.  I get a daily devotional sent to my email called “The Upper Room“, and they sent this Bible verse yesterday:

Then Jesus said, “There was a man who had two sons. The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of the property that will belong to me.’ So he divided his property between them. A few days later the younger son gathered all he had and traveled to a distant country, and there he squandered his property in dissolute living. When he had spent everything, a severe famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. He would gladly have filled himself with the pods that the pigs were eating; and no one gave him anything. But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired hands have bread enough and to spare, but here I am dying of hunger! I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me like one of your hired hands.”‘ So he set off and went to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him. Then the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quickly, bring out a robe–the best one–and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!’ And they began to celebrate.

“Now his elder son was in the field; and when he came and approached the house, he heard music and dancing. He called one of the slaves and asked what was going on. He replied, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has got him back safe and sound.’ Then he became angry and refused to go in. His father came out and began to plead with him. But he answered his father, ‘Listen! For all these years I have been working like a slave for you, and I have never disobeyed your command; yet you have never given me even a young goat so that I might celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came back, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fatted calf for him!’ Then the father said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and has been found.'”

-Luke 15:11-32 (NRSV)

When I was little, I heard this verse and couldn’t help but think “Well, that’s great for the prodigal son, but what about the one that’s been good the whole time?”  I thought it wasn’t fair, in the same way that I always thought my brother got more ice cream for dessert than I did and that wasn’t fair.  Now I read it, and I am so thankful for the grace God shows us.  The things that stick out to me about this passage are 1) God’s judgment and justice are perfect.  Whether or not we understand or agree with His reasons doesn’t matter.  2) No matter how much or how little we think we deserve, if we come to Him, He will give us much more than we really deserve.  God will forgive us for everything if we ask for it.  I know that in my life, I have made more mistakes than I can even remember so knowing he will forgive me is an incredible feeling.  Some days I forget how blessed I am, and I love reminders like this.