Promises to Keep

PROMISES TO KEEP

Recently I have had connections with seven couples who are now married or will be shortly.  For two of the weddings it was my pleasure to be the pastor, one of the brides is my daughter, for some I was or will be a guest, other couples getting married have a strong Trinity connection.  For our faith community all of these weddings and the promises that are made are a sign of hope and a reason for joy.

As I witness two people making promises of faithfulness to each other, I get teary-eyed because in our sometimes selfish, me-first world, promises are hard to come by.  Some couples write their own vows, some use words that are traditional and some use a mix of the two.  The words are important but the intention to keep these promises is what really touches me.  

Congratulations, best wishes and thank you to: Tyler & Jessica, Kymmie & Matt, Kael & Jamie, Peter & Mary, Les & Megan, Brendan & Stina, Bill & Lisa.  When I hear your promises I reminded of the promises Dave and I made 35 years ago and I remember that it is God who has enabled us to keep those promises.   It takes all of us to support and encourage marriage partners!  Please keep these faithful ones in your prayers.

When I am at weddings I am also reminded that God is faithful in keeping promises made to us.  God’s grace and forgiveness covers us whether we are married or single, widowed or divorced.  God blesses all of our relationships.  Our reconciling God seeks to reconcile us to God and to each other.  Marriage and all other relationships are only possible in an atmosphere of trust and forgiveness.  It is God who gives us the desire and the strength to forgive as we have been forgiven.

When I am the pastor at a wedding, these words are part of the prayers I pray on behalf of those making promises and those who witness those promises. “Gracious and tender God, From your great store of strength give them power and patience, affection and understanding, courage, and love toward you, toward each other and toward the world.  Make them gentle and patient, ready to trust each other, and when they fail, willing to acknowledge their fault and to give and receive forgiveness.  Strengthen and bless friends and family gathered here, call to mind those separated by distance, console those who mourn the loss of loved ones, and be present with those for whom love is a stranger. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Blessings of joy and peace for you in all your relationships,
Pastor Jocelyn Carson