June 29, 2013
The wedding put a stop to my breath, loosed the faucet of my tears, and exposed my heart to the truth of love’s power—to God. There was no mention of God – or anything religious – but the clarity of God’s presence was so strikingly evident. I was left stunned.
I was in shock and awe over the experience of coming face to face with God through exquisite beauty displayed not within the walls of a church, or before the authority of a minister, or any other “holy place” or person for that matter, but simply between two people expressing their extraordinary love for each other. It wasn’t solely the confession of their love that was so profound, but in combination with their unabashed willingness and grace to invite each of us into that vulnerable, holy space to witness their confession of love to each other. They spoke with such pure sincerity and were eloquent without trying; their vows were simply an outpouring of thoughts and feelings conveying what their hearts had grown to know as truth over the course of the last 10 years. And, as they spoke, their pure, vulnerable, authentic expression of love penetrated the depths of my being—pouring into my ears, resonating with my soul, and ringing true: that was God.
I realize this explanation is rather hyperbolic and I wish I could explain the experience better. Perhaps my inability to do so confirms it as an encounter with God all the more. No matter how hard I try I think all explanations will feel insufficient. Words cannot explain what is, in the end, just a deep sense of knowing.
My life and my world were forever changed that hour, confirming what I’d hoped to be true—God doesn’t have to be named to be present, identified, and glorified. Additionally, God shows up, or, perhaps more accurately, God is always present, even when we haven’t “invited” God or expect God. In any case, to see God is still often a mystery. And, if we want to see, keeping our eyes and hearts open is a good start.