The bride reaches out a delicately laced arm. Her hand extends just beyond the corner of the brick wall. Her heart cannot help but leap as she feels her husband’s hand close around her own.
No, not her husband.
It has been a tradition that the bride and groom are not to see each other on their wedding day until the guests rise and the bride walks down the aisle. From it has sprung a rather sweet tradition of the couple meeting up on opposite sides of a wall, blindfolded, or around a corner, so eager to spend time together, but knowing they must wait.
The image came to my mind this evening as I was listening to a sermon on our marriage to Christ. I have heard many a woman planning a wedding wish she could just elope and be married without all of the fuss and hassle of waiting through the work of it all to be close to the one whom her soul loves. I have to admit that I often feel the same way about Jesus. I can reach out beyond a wall, and I feel His strong hand grasping mind. My heart sings for joy even as it breaks and aches to be with Him face to face.
Why must I wait? Why can I not come home now?
We ought not allow ourselves to thrive on the intensity of that emotion, but there is still such significance to those moments. What makes wedding photos such a prized possession is how much they remind us of that sweetness of young love. An engagement seems so short after twenty-five or fifty years of marriage, and the wedding was only a day. I do not think our marriage to the Lord will be so very different.
When we, His bride, are consummated to eternity with Him, we will surely say, “Ah, at last!” Every tear is wiped away, all enemies subdued, and no night, for we will be in the light of His presence forevermore. Even so, we must still love to remember His faithfulness through this seemingly endless betrothal. We will look back so lovingly at how He led us like a bride through the wilderness of this broken world.
Though this world still hurts me so keenly, I don’t want to be so overwhelmed with the circumstances that I forget to turn to the One whom my soul loves. How many memories will we have, recorded for us in His heart, to peruse for all eternity? Oh, to hold on to His enduring faithfulness in this life through life everlasting! Like our sister before us, I want to treasure all of these things in my heart, and think on them when the bridegroom comes.
In the meantime, I squeeze His hand to say, “I love you.” And I feel His hand press mine in return.
Soon, my love.