This last weekend I was in a wedding of a dear, dear friend. The bride and groom asked their attendants and a few others to assemble a bouquet of love and support for them. They asked each of us to speak for approximately 30 seconds during the ceremony. More specifically they asked that we would share a word of encouragement, a thought on Scripture as it pertains to marriage, bits of wisdom from personal experience, or affirmation of what we know or have observed of them or our hope for their life together (and then add a flower, which they gave us, into a vase).
I agonized over this for DAYS. I mean, how can you really illustrate a picture of someone or sum up anything profound in 30 seconds? You can’t, unless you’re Maya Angelou or someone as poetically inclined. However I tried my darndest to add depth and wisdom and sincerity in my 30 second sermon. I said something along the lines of:
“Romans 12:10 reads “Love one another with genuine affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” We talk a lot about love but we don’t talk nearly as much about honor. To honor means to respect, esteem, dignify, to speak highly of each other when the other person isn’t around. Please remember to outdo one another in showing honor, to respect each other as much as you love each other.”
Or something to that effect. I had it written on a note card which got lost in the hustle and bustle of the never ending picture session.
I meant it, every word, and I chose that particular thing to talk about because frankly it isn’t something that my husband and I do well and I see the effects of a lack of honor. However there are a few things that I’d like to add in my 30 seconds +. Without further adieu:
1. Don’t take yourself too seriously. You aren’t always right and your spouse won’t always get it right, and that is life.
2. Do your best to see things in perspective, to see baby steps of progress when it feels like you have gotten nowhere.
3. Remember how much time you spent planning your wedding down to the littlest detail? Remember how much time you spent the day before your wedding trying to make sure you had the best laid plans? Spend just as much time and effort working on your marriage daily.
4. Serve one another in the little things. People say little things don’t matter but if something little matters to your spouse, then do your best to serve them in the little things.
5. Make sure that your spouse’s name is always safe in your mouth. Never slander them or degrade them to other people.
6. Make each other laugh.
7. Learn about the ways your spouse likes to be loved and put them into practice, and in the same breath, see how they love well and do your best to accept it even if it isn’t your thing.
And there you have them… a few things that if given the chance I’d say at your wedding. There are more and trust me I’ve failed miserably at everything on this list, but we try and really that is all that we can ask of each other.