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Wedding of BobbieSpreeman / Joel Holtgard

HLC-N  6/28/97       Texts: 1 John 4.9-12; John 15.9-12 

G& P be to you… and I mean it: you have been through a lot in the past few months: dealing w/ weather, moving, getting ready for wedding, everyday stuff

and so to be here today is kind of like the finally-coming-true of a long-held dream, a sense in which is like a fairy tale, the start of a “lived happily ever after”: romance and love

I hope you and everyone here today feels a bit of the romance of this ceremony / 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 sometimes turn out to be ONLY make believe in grim light of a real world w/ real problems which can be far more scary than any monster or dragon or witch

you know what I mean: you’re thinking she’s shopping way too much, and you’re thinking that he just doesn’t realize how hard it is to keep everything together; or that 85 Sunbird convertible still isn’t working right and the bills keep coming in or it seems you hardly ever talk to each other except to make decisions or settle problems, and you start thinking that your life would make good subject matter for some sad country, western tune... and you think: romance is gone

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

the answer seems obvious, simple: like it says in the texts you chose for today: Love one another

Yet true LOVE is anything but simple as you live it out in your daily lives where fairy godmothers don’t come around to do the laundry and fix the meals or take care of the kids

you quickly discover that it is impt to disting between the LOVE that never ends and simple,worldly  little thing called LUV - uc

- you fall in LUV at first glance, but you must grow in LOVE

- LUV is an impulse, but LOVE involves decisions / commitment,

- LUV is glamorous and self-gratifying, LOVE is patient and kind

- LUV can be selfish and suspicious and jealous, but LOVE is not envious or boastful or arrogant

- LUV happens quickly, easily, and just as quickly/easily disap’ears

         - LOVE takes time and energy, but also ... LOVE never ends

the Greek language of Bible has two separate words to describe these loves: the LUV word has to do with feeling, emotions, that arise with intimate assoc. - good thing: But can’t be commanded

BUT LOVE arises from a keen sense of the value and worth in the object of our love - it is something you can do and I want you to remember to do throughout your marriage: value, treasure, appreciate

feelings/passions/LUV may have ups/downs BUT you can always LOVE

Yet not just you 2 in this marriage: commanded to love one another, but it is impt to see that with everything that God commands, there is also a promise

and the promise is this: What God has joined together, that shall not be separated

it is 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 wish for some fairy GODmother to help you out of trouble - you can count on a wonderful, loving 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 LUV falters, that's when you will most appreciate God's LOVE.

that's when you will be able to rejoice that it is God who has joined you together and makes it possible for you to LOVE one another

so what we celebrate here today is even better than a fairy tale for we can rejoice that you can indeed live—and love—happily ever after because you are held in God's never-ending love          AMEN.

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