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®TP2¯®PL50¯®OF2¯®TW51¯®IP0,3¯®FF204¯®PT11¯Wedding of Don Frieler/Leann Rage

Bonanzaville 6/11/94 Texts: Eccl 4:9-12; 1 Cor 13:1-13

is a sense in which today is like a fairy tale

Once upon a time, man (Don) and woman (Leann)

after many adventures and long trips and countless miles, fell in love, got married and ... well, better not get ahead of selves; get them married first

But I hope you and everyone here today feels a bit of the romance, here in an elegant old country church

hopefully experience the fairy tale type of happiness that this wedding brings

for this celebration is a time for love and fairy tale dreams and the start of a happily ever after

but as we all know, fairy tales fail in the sometimes grim light of a real world w/ real problems which can be far more scary than any monster or dragon or witch

and the romance is wonderful... until it runs into the reality of the everyday world

you know what I mean: when work starts to get overwhelming and the car breaks down and the bills come in and it seems you hardly ever see each other and you can't figure out if you're going to go hunting or to the opera and you start thinking that your life would make good subject matter for some sad country, western tune...

in describing the trials and tensions of married life, I know I'm not telling you anything you're not expecting,

but in few moments, you two are solemnly going to promise your lifelong love for each other even under the most complex and difficult and un-fairy-tale like of situations.

I am certain that you will both do your very best to live out your good intentions, but in the real world, there are no magic potions, no golden-egg laying hens, no fairy godmothers who can fix everything with the wave of a wand

so how are you going to manage your marriage? how are you going to keep love and romance alive? how are you going to keep your marriage together, keep it all together and make your lives turn out happily ever after?

Let me remind you about a couple things on God's place in your marriage.

the Eccl passage gave some very practical wisdom: the two of you can succeed where each of you alone might fail.

but last verse of reading goes on to say that a rope of 3 cords is not easily broken. What is that 3rd cord? the cord that will kep your marrge tied together is God hmslf

It is God's love intertwined among your love for each other that will keep your love strong and growing. In fact, God's love is the only thing that will keep your mutual love alive. //

now that all sounds very nice, almost like a fairy tale should, but the thing is, in fairy tales, nobody seems to worry about cleaning windows, vacuum the floors or get grocery or fix supper etc

That's why I want to remind you about God's love because I truly believe that it will be vital for your marriage.

In the real world, even love does not always go as smoothly as fairy tales say it should, & happily ever after can turn into sadly sometime laters

we all know that there can be problems in married life;

we can't count on fairy tale magic but we must depend on genuine, diligent attn to real love.

And that's why I want you to understand correctly the passage from 1Cor.

It talks about those 3 great things: faith, hope and love--and how the greatest of them is love.

It says: Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.

What a declaration of love: eloquent, beautiful, inspiring--impossible. For all the brides and grooms who have been moved by these verses, not a single wedded couple has ever been able to live up to such love until death parts them

Do you know why? It's because when Paul is talking about you having love, he is talking about having the love of God within you. He is referring to God's love FOR YOU! The love you share with each other can aspire to such magnificent expression only insofar as it expresses God's love for you.

it is the love of God which will keep you together because God's love is far stronger and more powerful and more wonderful than even the most passionate and romantic of human loves

and this should be a great comfort and source of strength and encouragement to you, especially in the midst of trying and difficult times

For you see: you need not long for some fairy GODmother to help you out of trouble

you can count on a wonderful GOD who will be there with you in the midst of sickness and health and better and worse and all that the years may bring

So, when it's one of those times when you know that your life ain't no fairy tale, times when human love falters, that's when you will most appreciate God's love.

It will be God's love for you which is that 3rd cord that will preserve your marriage and keep it from being broken.

and when that happens, well, Once upon a time, man (Don) and woman(Leann)

after many adventures and long trips and countless miles, fell in love, got married and lived happily ever after... and loved happily ever after because they were held in God's never-ending love AMEN.

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