We are not renewing our vows to have a party. We are not renewing our vows so that I can finally have the wedding of my dreams. (Okay, well maybe a little, but that's hardly the main reason.)
Our reasons for renewing our vows goes way beyond the obvious. It is to celebrate the love that God has grown between my husband and me over the past sixteen years, to celebrate what He has taught us about our relationship with Him through our marriage, to celebrate the beautiful family He has blessed us with, and hopefully to serve to inspire other couples of what their marriage can be when God is placed at the center of it. We are renewing our vows to celebrate God's love through us!!
As I have been planning for the service I have learned how the Christian wedding ceremony is symbolic to our relationship with Christ. For instance, the groom waits at the altar while the bride makes her way to him. This is to represent that Jesus has gone before us and prepared the way, and now we make our way to Him - blameless and without blemish (the white dress).
Another point of beautiful semblance is the removing of the wedding veil. While I will not be wearing a veil at my ceremony, it is to me one of the most remarkable and significant points of a Christian wedding service. When the veil is removed from the bride's face, it represents an intimacy that is allowed between her and her groom that was not allowed before. It is symbolic, of course, of the tearing of the veil in the temple when Christ was crucified. By the veil being torn, we were given access to the Holy of Holies - a place previously reserved only for high priest. Just as the bride and groom enter into a new stage of intimacy, because of the torn veil in the temple, we can now come before God's throne of grace with confidence. We can seek Him face to face, intimately, and passionately with all that we are. HALLELUJAH!!
The dress is bought. The cake and flowers have been ordered. The photographer is on board. Musicians set. Making preparations for this next part of our marriage has made me so much more excited about the preparations that Christ is making for us in Heaven as He prepares for the wedding feast of the church when we join Him. Can you imagine how awesome it will be! I can't wait!!