Tuesday, May 18, 2010

So it's May, the month of graduations, award ceremonies, dance recitals, and WEDDINGS!!!! Such a beautiful month, its no wonder everyone loves this time of year :) The only downfall is the pollen, but with the rain we've had recently, I can't imagine even that has been very bothersome for my allergy prone friends! Anyways, so I've been thinking about this whole wedding thing- the ceremony itself, to clarify. If you are my Mom or Daddy, you know that I've been wrestling alot about that extra special moment when the bride enters the sanctuary. So I need to get all my thoughts out there, and if you have comments, please add them! I'm so open to ideas, comments and thoughts!

So what we have traditionally is that the guests are escorted in to their seats by ushers or groomsmen, then the groom and groomsmen take their places at the altar with the minister. (I'm def using "christian" terms, cuz I don't know what else you would say... "front of the room" "officiary" ??? ) The music begins and the brides attendants enter at a regal, measured pace. Often there is a ring bearer, carrying the wedding rings; a flower girl, tossing flowers onto the path for the bride to walk on. I've also seen 2 young boys come down the aisle unrolling a white carpet for the bride to walk on. Then follows the jr bridesmaids, bridesmaids, and maid of honor. Finally, the music changes, and the congregation rises to their feet as the Bride enters in a billowing white gown with much pomp and glory.

(I'm sorry if my description subtly showed my struggle, I tried to keep it objective haha)

Okay, so my issue with the above situation (which many of you are familiar with) is that the groom is basically ignored. I know its been said that "its the bride's party", but here's my take on that. Through the relationship, the guy does all the wooing, chasing, asking, etc. He is the one who does the work. The wedding is paid for by the brides family because she is wanting to honor him. It's the first act, as a wife, to bless our husbands. And so we plan a huge party focused entirely on us? Well that seems typical of pop culture today- where usually it is the girl who captivates and subdues her "man". So she deserves it! But that's not how the Bible represents marriage. So I just don't like how all the focus is on the bride, right from the get-go of the wedding.

But here's my issues- there is a GOOD reason for why everything is done this way! First, the groom is in the church first because he initiates the covenant. He is the leader. The bride must enter at some point after him, so it does kind of interrupt whatever is going on (which is probably why they had her come in near the beginning, to get the interruption ouit of the way). She wears a brilliantly white dress to represent her purity. Also to represent that she has readied herself for him. Both of these are very biblical representations. And then the congregation stands because it is customary for you to stand when a lady enters the room- for guys it is any lady; for girls it is any lady they wish to meet or honor. Since she is the most honored woman in the room, it makes sense that everyone would stand when she came in.

So, how can we tone down the pomp and circumstance that the bride enters with? How can we give more honor to the groom?

Any ideas?

1 comment:

  1. I'm so grateful when you give me the chance to do some scriptural digging!

    First, I agree with you that most weddings these days show the mark of our sadly secular culture. However, I don't really agree that the entrance of the bride diminishes from the groom. And I get to use the Bible to tell you why! :)

    Revelation 21:1-2 -- "Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband."

    V. 9-11 -- "Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying "Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb's wife...having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal."

    The groom, in representing Christ, has his glory in the glory of the bride. If he fulfilled his calling as a suitor, he has begun already to shepherd her in holiness, to make her beautiful as a lamb without spot or blemish (Eph. 5:25-29), ultimately prepared for her heavenly Lord. He's not marrying the woman he "earned" or "won," but rather he's marrying the woman he has begun to prepare as an offering to the Father. Christ sacrificed Himself that His Bride might be glorified and recieved by the Father. Likewise, the groom sacrifices his personal glory and rather basks in the glory of his bride.