As summer begins, my facebook page has lit up with the usual array of early June pictures. The last day of school, graduations, and of course, weddings.
Until recently, June was the most popular month to get married, passed recently by October. While I can see the appeal in getting married during a cooler time of the year, something about the month of June resonates with me as a time for new beginnings. Gone is the chill of winter and the rainy days of early springtime. June in Wisconsin is filled with soft lake breezes, gardens full of flowers, and the promise of the lazy days of summer. A wonderful time to celebrate the union of two souls in marriage, starting their new life together.
Weddings are beautiful. I will never tire of them.
Seeing two people, holding hands and pledging their love to each other stirs within me memories of my own wedding. As I type, the three diamonds on my engagement ring sparkle in the light of my desk lamp. My husband explained to me after I said yes to his proposal that those three stones had a special meaning. The two small diamonds on the side were the two of us, and God was the larger one in the middle, holding us together.
Sometimes, a marriage is about more than two people joining together. In the case of my co-worker and friend, Mandy, her recent marriage was not only the union of a husband and wife. It was also that of a family as her fiance became stepfather to her son.
For the reading at her wedding, she chose Ecc 4:12
In her case, this passage refers not just to the joining of her, her son, and her husband into a family. In a nice little twist, her married name is an anagram of the word “strand”.
In the first few lines of this passage, God shows us how two is always better than one, whether it be working together, facing adversity, or lifting each other when they fall. In the relationship between friends, a husband and wife, or a parent and a child, we are put on this Earth to help each other.
My in-laws have a little saying – the family that prays together stays together. This couldn’t be more true. When you let God into your life, His presence strengthens the bonds already made. My closest friendships are the ones that God is a part of. Our faith holds us together in a way that nothing else can.
This leads me to the third, and I believe most important meaning behind Ecc 4:12. It signifies the joining of God’s love into the love of every relationship, much like a braided rope is stronger than one or two ropes twisted together.
The union of two is stronger than that of each on its own.
But bring God into that equation and well, you have a bond that’s unbreakable.
May God bless all of your relationships and strengthen them with his love.