A White Wedding Dress.
Not even a month ago- I was struggling with picturing myself as a wife. Try as I may...I couldn't see it.
And so secretly,
To the knowledge of maybe no one else other than GOD I gave up on the idea of becoming a wife. Of course at that point I knew God knew how I felt and so I told Him, "God, I know everyone is not going to be married and if I'm one of those people, I truly believe I'm okay with that." Maybe I managed to fool myself in that moment but God didn't let me off the hook just because I believed I was being sincere. He reminded me that I had also just told Him "Lord I submit to You and Your will completely. I don't want a set plan or agenda of my own." He basically reminded me that saying that meant I should not set my heart or mind either for marriage or against it but on Him and the work He was doing in me so that He can work through me. It was because of my feelings of inadequacy I was attempting to shield myself from any hurt or disappointment that could come from wanting to be married. Of course God knew all of this and because of my willingness to believe Him I accepted what He showed me to be the truth of my situation.
Today I read Revelation 19and throughout the day different verses have gripped my thoughts but I my eyes have just been opened up to verses 7 and 8"...'for the marriage of the Lamb (Jesus Christ) has come, and His bride (the church) has made herself ready; to her it has been granted to be clothed with fine linen, bright and pure' - for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints."
Because the bride made herself ready (to be a bride and a wife) she received permission to be clothed with fine linen, bright and pure (the white wedding dress).
This gives me hope, for a couple reasons.
First many people (believers and unbelievers alike) recognize the current state of the church (the bride of Christ) as being imperfect but fail to recognize that though flawed it is still being perfected and it is still the love of Jesus' eternal life. When the time comes for Jesus to take His bride the church will be ready because she will have made herself ready and we know that's true because it's in the Bible.
Secondly, it speaks to my feelings of inadequacy in regards to being married and forces me to change my perspective. A woman is not born a bride. In the old testament as seen in the book of Esther a lot of time and preparation went into becoming a bride worthy of a King. Despite my past experiences and my present insecurities (just like the church can and will) I can make myself ready to be a bride. I can prepare myself now to one day be a wife. The Bible teaches us what God requires of the church as the bride of Christ and as I am part of the church those same requirements apply to me. Whether I get married on this side of eternity or not I have at least one groom who loves me more than life itself and He's already proven that by dying on the cross for me. In order to make myself ready for Jesus I have to learn to submit and be a wife and bride to Him now. That will make things that much easier should I be the Eve to some man's Adam in this life.
And although nowadays wedding dresses come in different shapes, sizes and colors! If and when I get married one thing is for certain, I Will wear A White Wedding Dress. I commit to doing what it takes and taking the steps God requires of me to be deserving of that white gown in the eyes of my family, my groom and most of all my God.
After reading Revelation 19 I cannot possibly allow fear of hurt or disappointment or insecurity stop me from making myself ready and preparing for marriage. White Wedding Dresses have always possessed some dreamlike and magical quality for me (Thank You "Say Yes to the Dress" and TLC's A Wedding Story) but now I will see White Wedding Dresses as the bright and pure fine linen that Revelation 19 talks about. I will honor them all the more and ensure that if and when my day comes to don one of those pristine gowns that my spirit, my soul are just as bright, pure, and blemish free as the dress itself.
I am genuinely happy for all those who have crossed (or are about ready to cross) the threshold from being single to being married. Yet, I can honestly say that I don't envy them. I'm simply grateful. I thank God for this new realization and that He has given me this time to make myself ready and prepare to be a bride and wife, if for no one else, for HIM!
Male or Female, if you've accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior you are a part of the church and that makes you a part of the Bride of Christ.
Love is a beautiful thing Pilgrims! Embrace it!
...and make yourself ready.