Tag Archives: contentment

The Biggest Wedding This World Has Ever Seen

My whole life, I’ve known this day would come — the day when my prince and I will be united; when two will become one.

However, as a little girl, I was never the type to daydream about my wedding. I hadn’t even thought about my wedding colors until after we got engaged. I had never touched a bridal magazine until just a couple months ago. Now, if you’re wondering if I’m excited about getting married, you can ask my roommate or my students — the people who see me every day and have to hear me rambling on and on about June 11th, 2010 — and they will testify that I am ecstatic!

With this rising anticipation blossoming inside of me each day, I find myself beginning to understand why Jesus compares himself to a groom in the Bible. Maybe that was partially for us engaged girls who need to be reminded that as exciting as getting married is, our lifelong relationship with Christ and His return are even more exciting!

I was just reading Matthew 25:1-13, the parable of the ten virgins waiting for the bridegroom. Basically, the groom (symbolizing Christ) was coming to take all ten young ladies (symbolizing Christ’s followers) to a banquet, but five of them did not have enough oil in their lamps to stay up waiting for the bridegroom. While they were out buying oil, the bridegroom came, and those five women did not get to go to the banquet.

Essentially, five of these women were distracted by something else when they should have been focused on Christ. In modern day terms, maybe they were too busy watching Entertainment Tonight and reading celebrity magazines that they weren’t thinking about God. Maybe they were caught up in becoming successful businesswomen. Maybe they were swept into the whirlwind of raising kids, keeping their husbands happy, and maintaining a clean household. But something distracted them from Jesus.

As glorious as wedding planning, raising a family, or having a career may be, I never want any of those things to steer any of my focus away from Jesus. I want my lamp to be burning brightly, so that He can see that I am waiting for Him more than I’m waiting on any life circumstance!

Getting married, having kids, finding my life’s calling, are all exciting. But I won’t find any of my fulfillment from those things. My fulfillment comes from my connection with the Bridegroom.

May all of our hope be in You, Bridegroom! May we be found captivated by the wait for the biggest wedding of all time — when we, Your Church, are united with You forever!

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

Making Christ ‘My Portion’

“I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.'” Lamentations 3:24

How often do I really say to myself — and mean it and believe it — that the Lord is my portion? We live in a society that is not driven to believe that anything or anyone is our “portion” — nothing fully satisfies, so we have to keep searching for more. Thought you were happy with your Razr phone a few years ago? Well, now you have to have an iPhone to be happy.

Thought MySpace was great? Facebook is so much better! And while you’re at it, you need a Twitter too. And make sure all of those programs are accessible through your handy iPhone!

We live in a society that is never satisfied. And that rings true in the area of relationships too. Especially we women tend to think that some man will sweep us off our feet and bring that Rhett Butler-type love. I do believe God intends us to marry and to have a happy marriage, but more importantly than that, He wants us to be captivated by His love.

Over the last few years, I will admit that I have been over-zealous about marriage. Having lived in Oklahoma my entire life until 18 months ago, I grew up thinking I would get married in my early 20’s just like every one else. Now almost 26, it doesn’t look like marriage is anywhere in the near future. But now, more than ever before, God is teaching me that He is my portion — that the love of a man or any other person will never satisfy me completely. And neither will success in a career or possession of any item or number of items.

As one of my favorite authors, Elisabeth Elliott, said, “Our hearts are lonely ’til they rest in Him.” The first step to making Christ our portion is thoroughly realizing that our hearts will never be satisfied in any other but Him.

Mirages

Sometimes it seems like we only get through one season of life by looking forward to the next season.

“I can’t wait to get married.”
(Once you’re married): “I can’t wait to have kids someday.”
(Once you have kids): “I can’t wait ’til the kids are out of the house!”

We live with an expectation that the next season will be better than our present, instead of fully enjoying where we are. We look for fulfillment in the future instead of realizing that Christ can completely satisfy us now.

I was listening to Joyce Meyer a couple weeks ago and she called these expectations “mirages.” We imagine our present circumstances to be the desert, and we think the next season will be like a pool of crystal clear water. But if we haven’t learned fulfillment in Christ by the time we reach the next season, we will realize that season is just more sand and heat!

I have tasted the fulfillment that I believe only a relationship with Jesus Christ can bring. This last Thursday at my church, we had a worship night for the college/20-somethings group. Through each song, I could feel God telling me He loves me; that even if no one else in the world understands me, He knows me more intimately than I even know myself. He loves me, and in that love, I find peace and joy to live each day.

In John 4, Jesus has a conversation with a woman at a well. She came to the well to fetch water to satisfy her physical need, and Jesus ended up calling her out. She had been living with several men in an attempt to quench her spiritual thirst. Instead of making her feel guilty about her sin, Jesus drew a profound parallel. “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drins the water I give him will never be thirsty again.” John 4:13-14

Jesus was telling her that the men and everything else in life she was running after were just mirages of satisfaction, but He was the Living Water, the One who would cause her to never thirst again.

Jesus offers us His Living Water daily. But we ignore Him down so often. It’s easier to turn to the things the rest of the world is turning to (relationships, shopping, alcohol, food, etc.) than to spend time with Christ. But when we do take time to seek Christ, we experience a deeper satisfaction than anything else this life offers.