In the past few months, I have attended two different weddings. For both, I was there in support of the groom, and in both weddings it was the groom I mostly, though not entirely, kept an eye on while the bride was coming down the aisle.
It was a pleasure to see the expressions on the grooms’ faces as their beautiful brides walked down the aisle because, having been each one’s roommate at some point, I knew how long they had waited for this occasion.
For me, the most climactic moment of the wedding is when the bride comes in.
See, I take for granted that once the wedding has started the two will actually marry, so the kiss and pronouncement are a given. She’s been preparing herself days, months, perhaps, years. Indeed, both of them have been preparing themselves for each other. Clothes have been picked out, flowers decided upon, friends and family notified, tears shed, prayers prayed, and so much more. A lot has gone into the moment, and the occasion, when the bride enters the wedding ceremony.
In both weddings, we stood to honor the brides, and rightly so. Proverbs 31 encourages such an honor when it calls forth the children and husband of an excellent wife to “rise and bless her.” Are not friends and other family, then, given a model to follow? We did. We stood to honor these women.
And my eyes were on the grooms, for I didn’t want to miss what I would see in them.
In Revelation chapter 19, we get a foretaste of a wedding story that is fleshed out a bit more in Revelation 21. We read of a bride who has both made herself ready and has been made ready. Then we read of the bride, the wife of the Lamb, coming out in her glory—the very glory of God—to meet her groom. We understand the bride to be the people of God, while the Lamb, the groom, is Jesus.
Just as in the weddings I attended, where the brides, after their preparation, came down the aisles in their glory, so too will we, followers of the Lamb—after our time of preparation—go down the aisle, so to speak, to meet Jesus.
Which leads me back to why I was watching the grooms.
If we, as the people of God, are symbolized in the bride, and Christ is symbolized in the groom, then in the eyes of these Godly grooms, I was getting a glimpse of just how excited Jesus is to be with me, to be with us, to be with his bride.
In those grooms I caught a glimpse of our Lord.
If they were excited, in love, and joy-filled, then how much more so is Jesus towards us?
Regardless of my marital status, I know as a follower of Jesus there is a union waiting of which earthly weddings prefigure. I’m learning to live today preparing for that day, and I’m empowered by the awareness of just how excited He is to see me.