The Marriage Supper

 

Walking into that reception hall on Cecil’s arm was the funnest thing I had ever done in all of life. I felt like my face would split wide open, if my smile were any wider. Cecil was pumping his fist into the air, as though he had just won a great victory. Our guests were standing, laughing, crying, and clapping.

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I’ve been to lots of celebrations, but this one topped them all. It was an afternoon of pure fun. Cecil even insisted on doing the garter thing as old as we were. All the men who waited to catch the garter were white haired and happily married.

The remembering of that day is bitter sweet, but I am now looking forward with anticipation to another wedding celebration, where there is no possibility of sadness attached.

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The Apostle John wrote these words in Revelation 19:7 – 9 “Let us celebrate, let us rejoiceajjujvvjuujjjj8, let us give Him glory! The marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready. She was given a bridal gown of bright and shining linen.

The linen is the righteousness of the Saints. The angel said to me, “Write this: ‘Blessed are those invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb.’”

wedding I have been invited to Jesus’ wedding celebration. How about that? Not only am I an invited guest, I am His bride, as are all those who have genuinely loved Him. I became His bride many years ago. I was united with Him when He became my Savior. I don’t understand the mystery of all this, but I know that it is true.

John said, “…His wife has made herself ready.” I remember preparing for my wedding that Saturday morning. The long hot shower. The lotions and perfumes. Applying my makeup flawlessly. No hair out of place. Everything had to be perfect for my bridegroom.

wedding 3Now I am making myself ready for this wedding feast with Jesus where my union with Him will finally be complete. I must purify myself laying aside everything that would mar my relationship with my bridegroom.

I will be given a bridal gown of bright and shining linen, pure, without spot or wrinkle. The linen is symbolic of the righteousness of God, whereby I have been made righteous. When I slipped on that lovely Ivory gown, the day I married Cecil, I felt gorgeous. Suddenly, it seemed as though everything was new. Standing there in the bride’s room with my beautifully clad bridesmaids around me, I looked in the mirror and exclaimed, “Look! I’m a bride!” It was a fairy tale moment.

However, there is nothing imaginary or pretend about Jesus’ wedding supper, to which you and I are invited. I will sit at the table with my heavenly bridegroom surrounded by a vast multitude from every tribe and tongue and nation, from every age since the foundation of the world.

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Eloquent preachers have attempted to describe this magnificent occasion speaking of sitting down to feast with the Apostles Peter and Paul, and the Patriarchs Abraham and Moses. I am convinced that it will not matter who I am sitting beside. There will be no rubber necking trying to spot some Biblical celebrity, for all eyes will be fixed upon Him, Jesus our Lord and Savior, the author and finisher of our faith, our heavenly Bridegroom.

Oh! How we shall celebrate. Can you imagine the sound of that mass choir made up of everyone who has ever believed on Christ as Savior? It will be the sound of a mighty cataract of water, the sound of rolling thunder. Together we will sing His praises.

“Hallelujah!

The Master reigns,

our God, the Sovereign-Strong.

Let us celebrate, let us rejoice.

Let us give Him glory!

The marriage of the Lamb has come;

His wife has made herself ready.”

A new day will have dawned! We will no longer need the sun and the moon for light. All that darkness that you have endured in this life will be no more. Jesus, Himself, will be our SONSHINE!

“Hallelujah!The Master reigns, our God, the Sovereign-Strong.Let us celebrate, let us rejoice. Let us give Him glory!The marriage of the Lamb has come; His wife has made herself ready.”

 

 

 

PRECIOUS IN HIS SIGHT

Before his illness, Cecil and I cuddled together on the sofa each evening after dinner. He loved to hear tales about my days in the ministry. One night I wept, as I shared a hurtful experience. Tender hearted Cecil wept with me wetting my neck and shoulder with his tears.

little girl Holding me close, he whispered, “You are so precious.”

Those sweet words turned everything inside me to mush, but at the same time I had an awful urge to laugh right out loud. No one, whom I could remember, had ever called me precious – sassy maybe, feisty, opinionated, pushy, perhaps even pretty or smart, but precious? Never! Oh, I know I was precious to my Mom and Dad, at least I hope I was, but they didn’t use that word.

I knew the word, though, even when I was little. When I was five and six years old, my pastor used to let me sing in the Sunday evening service. But by the time he was ready for me, I had already taken off my shoes in preparation for a nap. He always called me “Little Sister Clark.” So, “Little Sister Clark” padded barefoot up to the platform and sang. My favorite vintsong was “Jewels.”

Little children, little children,

Who love their Redeemer.

Are His jewels, PRECIOUS jewels.

His loved and His own.

In Sunday school, we also sang “…red and yellow, black and white. They are PRECIOUS in His sight. Jesus loves the little children…”

I knew the word. I understood that I was precious, whatever that meant. I figured it must be good, because Jesus loved me and I belonged to Him.

I finally found out that precious means something of value or high price, something highly esteemed or cherished, or something excessively refined or costly.

vintage girl 1We speak of precious metals, precious gems, and works of art by the Masters. The Hope Diamond is valued at $350,000,000.00, the 3,106 carat Cullinan Diamond at $400.000.000.00. It has been suggested that the country of France sell off the Mona Lisa, said to be worth $787,000,000.00, in order to pay their national debt.

It is not unusual for people to pay millions for some artifact to hang on a wall or display in a glass front case. To these people things are precious and money is not an issue.

However, there is something or someone far more precious than paintings and jewels. Cecil was right. I am precious! You are precious!

The Mona Lisa was created by the master painter, Leonardo de Vinci.

You were created by the Master of all masters, God Himself. He, who spoke the worlds into existence, formed you with his own hands. What a sculptor!

If the Mona Lisa is valued at $787,000,000.00, think of your value to the heart of God.

vintA precious thing is esteemed or cherished, and so also are you. In Zephaniah 3:17, we read, “He will rejoice over you with gladness. He will quiet you with His love. He will rejoice over you with singing.” Did you know, you make the heart of God glad? I, of all people, make the heart of God glad. Think of that!

Psalm 147:11 says, “The Lord takes pleasure in His people.” Just as you would stand before the Mona Lisa or the Hope diamond and admire the beauty and perfection, so God looks upon you and me, His creation, and He says, (Genesis 2:31) “What I did is good!” He takes pleasure in His work.

Now, I must not forget. A precious thing may also be extremely costly. In Matthew 13:45-46 we read of a merchant, who sold all he possessed in order to buy one beautiful pearl. But that’s nothing!

Think of what God did. He paid the ultimate price. He gave His only Son, Jesus, and Jesus gave His life to buy you back from sin and make you a member of His own family.

You are God’s most costly possession. You are of great value. You are highly esteemed. You are cherished, and God has paid a great ransom for you. You are a child of the King.

This wondrous truth ought to make you walk taller. There ought to be a lilt to your laughter, a twinkle in your eye, and a spring in your step.

All the lies the enemy has told you are just that. Lies! You are of value. You are special. You are going to make it, and God loves you!

retro phoneLook up! Morning has dawned, the sun is shining, and God is singing because of you!

 

 

 

 

The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow…

Two weeks ago I had never thought of blogging nor did I see a need for it.  I wondered how in the world one could sit in front of his computer all day, when there are so many more exciting and demanding things to do. Now here I am, in front of my computer writing my first blog, and I believe it is God ordained.

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By way of introduction, I am that seventy-seven year old first time bride recently turned eighty. It has been almost three years since my Cecil died – years of pain and sorrow and bewilderment and lots of whys. However, my strong faith in a God who does not fail, a faith developed over three-quarters of a century, has brought me up and out of the pit of despair. It is “tomorrow” and the sun has come out. My tears have been spent, and I have touched again that stream of divine joy, which, for a time, was obscured by the darkness.

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I am ready to remember and celebrate the good and sweet things that defined my brief time with Cecil.

Right now I am remembering in particular that Cecil CHOSE me.   With all my wrinkles, arthritic knees and my pace maker, still he chose me.

Now I don’t want you to get the wrong idea. I’m not bad looking, when I’m fully clothed. In fact, Cecil used to say, “You clean up quite well.” You should know, however, that I am not about to run a marathon or win a bathing beauty contest. Cecil just chose me as I was.

Remember when we were kids choosing teams for kick ball or some other game. We jumped up and down, waving our arms, and yelling at the team captains, “Choose me! Choose me!   We all wanted to be the first one chosen.

kids playing

My adopted grand niece used to say, “Mommy, Mommy tell me about how you choosed me, when you went to the hospital and said, ‘I want that baby, the one with the black eyes and the curly hair.’ Tell me Mommy, tell me how you choosed me.”

 

To be chosen is a wondrous thing that marks us for favor or special privilege.   We all long for that kind of affirmation to one degree or another. We all long to be special to someone.

Cecil could have had a harem of women had he wanted, and if he could have stayed ahead of the law. When he was alone those years, he sometimes wandered into a restaurant on Sunday, and invariably, someone would call, “Cecil, come eat with us.” There they were – a table full of lovely, white haired ladies, some of them still beautiful and well turned out. He never refused the invitation.

hey handsome...

 

In fact, he loved it. He was like a rooster in a hen house. I am positive that any one of those women would have been delighted at his attention. Now that I think of it, did he just wander in?

 

BUT HE CHOSE ME! It was a defining moment in my life, a life changing moment. Someone loved me, someone wanted me.

The beauty of all this is that long before Cecil ever appeared on the horizon, I had already been chosen by another.

In Ephesians 1:4, we are told that God chose us and loved us before time began, before the foundations of the world were laid. The passage goes on to tell us He determined to adopt us and make us His sons and daughters. Our adoption included our redemption and forgiveness of sin. Our Father took great pleasure in making these plans for an abundant life.

It is amazing to know that before I ever came to be, I existed in the heart and mind of God. He knit me together or embroidered me in my mother’s womb, and He had detailed plans for my life before I breathed my first breath.

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He chose me and He has chosen you! You are His favored child.

 

 

I don’t know where are you today? Have you, figuratively, crawled back into bed and pulled the covers over your head? Perhaps the doctor has delivered a hopeless diagnosis. Your marriage is in trouble. Your kids are running wild. The money has dried up. And God doesn’t hear you anymore. You feel totally alone and unloved.

Listen to me. YOU ARE HIGHLY FAVORED! If you call Jesus Savior, it is because He has Chosen you.

Yes, the night comes. Sooner or later it comes for all of us. But night is always followed by the morning, and with the morning comes the joy.

God has a plan for every moment of your life. Walk with Him. He will be your load star leading you up and out of the darkness.

THE SUN WILL COME OUT TOMORROW!

The sun will come out tomorrow...