Happy wedding season! Who doesn’t love weddings? Only the hardened cynic can refuse the flutter of hope, the expectation of joy at the sight of a bride dressed in glittering white!
Spring has become wedding season in America with weekend-long bridal fairs and the appearance of thick glossy magazines advertising every imaginable detail for the wedding to remember.
But have you ever thought of Easter in wedding terms?
In Jewish culture the bride-to-be and her father welcomed the groom-to-be and his father for the much-anticipated conversation about making the couple “official.” What price was the groom’s father willing to pay for the virtuous young woman? What guarantee would be given that this young man’s word would be kept?
Would the lovely bride-to-be accept the invitation? Would her father?
If all went well and both parties agreed, they sealed the deal and celebrated with a glass of red wine.
This old hymn reminds me it is for a wedding feast and a marriage that I was purchased. It is for oneness and unity with me that propelled Jesus to earth and confined Him to a single cell in the blackness of Mary’s womb.
The price His Father paid for my betrothal was Jesus’ death.
The cross … a betrothal?
The most stunning proposal of all time!
A promise to marry His holy beloved?
Think of the cross as our engagement ring!
Our betrothal sealed with wine….the wine of His crimson blood.
Like a newly engaged woman gazing at her shiny diamond, lifting her hand, turning it this way and that to catch the light of the sun in its sparkling facets, do we gaze at the cross in similar admiration and wonder?
Do we have any idea how loved we are that He would give His life to purchase us to be His bride? We who are anything but lovely and virtuous. We who are most unholy.
This Easter Jesus again pops the question.
Have you accepted My proposal, He asks?
Have you said yes to My demonstration of eternal love for you?
If you have, will you wear a cross the rest of this month as a sign that you are chosen to be His as proudly as a bride wears her ring?
Will you choose to celebrate Resurrection Sunday, the anniversary of His proposal to you, His promise to never leave you or forsake you, His promise to return for you when the time for the marriage is nigh? Will you make a plan for making that day special? Though we cannot value His gift enough we must try a celebration even if it feels like a child’s feeble attempt. The Father will be pleased.
I pray you find a way to sing and dance, worship and rejoice this year as never before. And may those who are not yet betrothed see and want to know more.
It’s almost time—Holy Week begins in 3 days!
And we’d love to hear your story and see photos of how you made much of His proposal of marriage to you and yours.