This past weekend I had the honor and privilege of conducting the wedding of a young lady and her groom down in the white sands of Panama City, Florida. I’d never done a beach wedding before, so Lisa and I were looking forward to not only the joy of the wedding ceremony, but some time at the beach!
Stephanie, the bride, has a long history with our family. As a young teen in the early 90s, she often babysat our girls when they were small, and she spent much time in our home, and always enjoyed a great relationship with Lisa. In recent years, Stephanie has worked at the same doctor’s office that Lisa has been at for decades, and their friendship has been renewed.
What made this wedding so special is the story of how these two came together. Stephanie went through a painful divorce some years ago, which was not her fault. Bobby, the groom, had experienced the pain of divorce in his own life, yet had come to faith in Jesus Christ a few years ago, and has grown steadily in the Lord since. Both of them met and fell in love, and saw their wedding as a true new beginning for them, not only relationally, but deeper, spiritually.
So under a beautiful, setting sun, they exchanged vows, exchanged rings, and have begun a new life together under God’s renewal and blessing.
Part of what I shared in their ceremony was how every marriage is a picture of God’s offer of renewal and relationship through His Son, Jesus Christ. And this marriage especially portrays the new beginnings that we find in Him. 2 Corinthians 5:17 states “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away, and all things have become new.”
I’m thankful that our God is all about new beginnings. Only He can make new a heart and life that has been broken, hurt. Like the wedding on the beach, God makes all things new.