The blushing bride

We keep thinking we have to do something to earn a new identity, a new calling, and a destiny in Christ.

But the grace of God doesn’t work on merit. Your identity, your destiny, is simply given to you.

Your only response is to humbly receive the gift.
     MIKE GLENN, The Gospel of Yes

grooms-cakeI didn’t expect to cry Saturday. I thought I was all cried out. (So many intense losses and gains the past few months.)

But I had a couple drops still left in me, and this was as good a time as any to drop them.

If I’m going to cry at a wedding, the most poignant moment is when the bride makes her entrance in the doorway, and the groom sees her in all her beauty.

I watch him more than I watch her. His eyes show pure excitement. His smile, uncontrollable joy.

On Saturday, David gave me the full show. He couldn’t stop grinning when he saw my neighbor Eva walk down the aisle on her dad’s arm.

And that’s when it hit me—Is this enthusiasm, this passion, what Christ feels for his bride, the church? For me?

Of course it is. When Christ sees us, all clean and white and pure, his eyes light up. His heart is overjoyed that we belong to him. He delights in our covenant bond.

And me? That makes me smile, too. Just like Eva.

Her glow was unmistakable as she zeroed in on her groom. While she cared about other people in the sanctuary, her focus stayed on David. He’s the one she’s pledging her life to. He’s the one she wants to grow old with.

When the ceremony was over, she was a new person. With a new name. A name given to her not because of anything she’d done to earn it, but as a gift from the person she loved. She accepted it gladly (I know because she changed her name on Facebook within hours).

My marriage with Christ makes me a new person, too. With a new identity. A gift given me by my Savior, not because I deserve it, but because he graces me with it.

I humbly receive the gift.
I’m honored to wear the family name.
I want to keep eyes focused on the One who chose me, the One whom I love.

It’s enough to make me cry. As I smile.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Ephesians 2:8-9

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2 Corinthians 5:17

* * *

What makes you cry at a wedding?

Can you imagine how excited Christ is to see you walk down the aisle to him?

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