Thursday, August 01, 2013

For Kris and MIchelle

I was going to finish a quilt for you as a wedding present, or knit you an afghan. Or write a hymn text.

But none of those things were accomplished. And now it's two days before your wedding and I am still trying to create a gift. It will have to be made, not of fiber, but of words.

The thing is, I don't have wise words to share about marriage. There are lots of reasons for that. Mostly the experience is not fresh in my mind or imagination. Anything I would say would only echo the sentiments expressed in the greeting cards and good wishes coming at you from all directions--or be much too complicated.

But I have been thinking a lot about Life lately, and since you two will be going through Life together, I thought -- well, that's a good topic. Words I have lived by.

Process matters more than product. It's the doing of things that brings joy, much more than pointing to what has been done.

Patience is a process and not a commodity. Don't think about having enough or about using it up. Discover what you need to do to keep generating it.

Things look different to different people. You two probably agree on a lot of things, but you each also have your own assumptions and frames of reference. Try to look through the other's eyes and experiences.

Most of us act on our own inner logic. It may not be logical to someone else. It may not be good for us. We might not even understand it or recognize it, and it's hard to break away from.

Love encompasses both mercy and justice.

My dad told me this many years ago. Words you speak have three meanings: 1) what they mean to you, 2) what they might mean to an objective third-person observer, and 3) what they mean to the person you are talking to. Christian kindness consists in letting #3 influence what you say and how you say it.

People before things.

Love really is all you need.

Even in the worst of times, God is present.

And God is good. All the time.

I'm looking forward to watching your life together unfold. God bless you!