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Family and Friends
Photo: Benjamin Earwicker
Everyone knows what a blessing good family is. But it’s an even greater blessing when your family members are also your friends. Our family recently became aware of this at our daughter’s wedding. We already knew it, but when you’re on the receiving end, it tends to leave a deeper impression.

Anyone who has planned a wedding knows that no matter how much preparation goes into the months prior to the event, there is always a list of things to do that last day or two that can’t be handled ahead of time. As we found ourselves going through that list, we also found family members coming to our aide, asking, “What can I do?” And then again, “What can I do now?” “Aunt Gwen, what else can I do?” There were sisters contributing their decorative, artistic, and musical talents. There was a brother who took it upon himself to make a Taco Bell run for a hungry wedding party. Then there were nephews videotaping and snapping priceless photos. Photos that the pros just wouldn’t think of. There were 150 leaf-shaped sugar cookies baked with love by Grandma.

It isn’t unusual that extended family attend a wedding. But coming early to help with the work, as well as staying afterward to help clean up, and doing it not because they are expected to but because they truly enjoy helping, is special. Knowing that family members left at the peek of harvest rush while others endured flight complications, and still others arranged time away from medical and graduate studies in order to attend, is very special. Learning that a sister filled in with a few unexpected details at the last minute that I didn’t even know about until later, is also touching. 

When the time came for the actual event, everything went as planned. The bride and groom were united, but not without much preparation.

Body of Christ

Reflecting on how wonderful it is when family works together for the same cause, I am reminded of the body of Christ, the church. Isn’t it the same thing, really? The bride groom (Jesus) is coming soon and the bride must be prepared. I’m thinking how wonderful it would be if all parts of this family we call the church would keep coming to the Lord and asking, “What do you need for me to do?” “What can I do now?” “What mess shall I clean up?” “How can I use my talents to enhance this event?” “What errands shall I run for you?” “Is anyone hungry?”

Think about it!  What if the church truly was one big dedicated family, with members willing to sacrifice their own time, work, and talents for the event of Jesus’ appearing? What if God found himself surrounded by church family members buzzing around him just waiting for the next assignment? The church is the Lord’s bride. There is much to be done in preparing her for the event of his coming. Are we anxiously doing all we can to unite Jesus with his bride?

It’s something to think about. Yes, it’s a blessing when God gives us family and friends in the same package. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we would return that same blessing to Him?

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By Gwen Simmons. Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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