Exactly 24 years ago today I stood before an eager crowd and pronounced, "I do." Was I young? Yes. Was I naive? Yes. Did I believe in 'the fairy tale'? Yes. Don't we all? I was not, however, foolish enough to think that perfection was just before me, but I did believe bliss was. My hopes were high. My enthusiasm was mounted. I was filled with glee and jitters all at the same time.
The details of the wedding come to mind from time to time. Like when assuring that I did not appear nervous walking down the aisle, I stuck a piece of gum in my mouth; chewed it throughout the entire ceremony. And when I was conscious of the fact that my dress got caught underneath my shoes. And the fact that the bouquet was quite heavy. And most notably, how handsome the groom was standing up front awaiting his new bride. It was hard to walk gracefully while resisting the urge to stare at him. I remember he had the biggest grin. I could tell he was a bit nervous as well. Thinking back to that long walk forward, I recall forcing myself to smile continually; what a difficult task when I had so many other thoughts whirling around in my head.
As the years have passed, I have found myself often reliving those precious moments. The butterflies that were at a minimum because of the Doublemint. All of our friends and family that made the long journey to be a part of the joyous occasion. The cherished words of the gentle minister and the look of hope in his eyes. The speech my husband gave before we descended the platform; vowing to pledge his undying love. It was all so sweet. It was all so exciting. It seems like so long ago. Much has happened in the years from then until now.
More children. Career changes. Relocations. Health crisis. Graduations. Farewells. Funerals. Joy. Pain. Lessons. It certainly was not what I had planned but through it all, I have learned to lean and trust in an all-loving Savior. He has been more Faithful than I have. When I blow it, He is ready to forgive when I come to Him. He has stuck closer than a brother. He has been a very present Help in trouble. He has bound my wounds. He has been a Balm in Gilead. I am thankful for the grace He has bestowed to me to weather the storms that have crept up unawares.
In the past 24 years, I have become more keen of my great need of Him. I have learned that I cannot make it without Him. I have realized that I do not want to live without Him; there would be no purpose for existence. He sustains me. He fulfills me. He completes me. He is the better part of me. I am thankful that I have yielded my life to His control though I do not do it perfectly every time. In the last 2 1/2 decades, He has been one of the best choices I have made for my life. Thank you Lord.