I received a text from Tina on Wednesday which made me laugh…”Do you have any wedding day jitters?” I responded with, “Yes, I’m a mess!” I really wasn’t, but it was fun to get her going. 🙂
The week before when I was on the treadmill one evening, I had the overwhelming thought that since Pastor Barb was coming back home to visit for ten days, Bill and I should renew our wedding vows! (God seems to speak to me while I’m running!) We wanted to do this five years ago with our 15th wedding anniversary, but never made it happen. Now during our 20th year, it seemed perfect!
I ran it past Tina first, to see if she thought Barb would be willing to do that while she was back. (And then I thought I better clear it with Bill! He said yes, of course!) After getting Tina’s thoughts, I called Barb that very evening. She said she would be honored. I was so excited!
We planned it for Wednesday evening. We knew it would be kind of an impromptu and casual event. But other than that, that’s all we planned. Barb said she planned the ceremony on the plane on the way home. She said God gave it to her in about ten minutes. 🙂
So when Wednesday rolled around, Bill knew what he was wearing, but I had no idea what I would be wearing. Ali thought I should wear a dress. I knew I didn’t want to. Bill was going to be wearing jeans, so I figured I would also wear jeans. It wasn’t about what we were wearing…in fact, I find it funny that I wasn’t so concerned with our attire. I guess that’s where we are at now. Some of that stuff really doesn’t seem to matter anymore. We were renewing our vows with our pastor and in the presence of God…that’s what really mattered. 🙂
I had a normal day at the Mission on Wednesday, and that’s when I received Tina’s text. Ali called me that afternoon wondering where our wedding cake top was. I pointed her in the right direction, and knew she was up to something, but not sure what. 🙂
Arriving home from work, I changed clothes (a few times) Ali and Zach left early (they said they had errands to run), and Bill and I arrived back at the Mission about 10 minutes late for our own wedding!
Walking into the Mission, I had goosebumps. Here were Ali & Zach, Barb, Tina, Mike, Grace & Olivia, and our friends Marcia & Bruce. Mike took part of the night off of work to be there, and Bruce was able to get work off too. What a blessing!
On the kitchen counter of the Mission, Ali surprised us with a beautiful wedding cake with our cake top on the center! She also had white grape sparkling juice in fancy plastic glasses. Tina ordered a beautiful bouquet for me to carry and a boutonniere for Bill. Tina also had created a power point with pictures from our wedding day! Everything was perfect. I was even a little nervous!
Barb walked us through how the ceremony would go, and we were ready.
“Amazed” by Lonestar began to play through the speakers…another surprise from Ali. I walked down the aisle to meet my groom. I couldn’t help but tear up as I walked toward Bill.
It seemed like 20 years flashed through my mind during that short walk. Bill and I had come so far to get to this very moment…
Barb made the ceremony so special. She recalled times that were extremely tough in our marriage. Times that would have probably been easier to give up. She recalled times God blessed our marriage and each other. She recalled good and peaceful times. Barb had been through all of those with us. She was our counselor, our pastor and our friend all through the years.
The presence of the Holy Spirit was so powerful and so real. I would have to say it was even stronger Wednesday night than it was on our wedding day! Barb said later that it was probably the most spirit-filled wedding she’s ever done. 🙂
Barb asked Ali and Zach to share their thoughts on our marriage and on us. What they shared was incredibly touching. Zach even shed tears, which I hadn’t seen him do for a very long time. Their words were beautiful!
Bill and I were given the opportunity to share with each other as well. Bill’s words blessed me and brought me to tears. We exchanged vows again, this time with meaning unlike ever before. It was such an incredible experience!
Then another surprise…Firehouse’s “Love of a Lifetime” began to play. We had that sung before our wedding 20 years ago! Facing each other, holding hands, I wanted to break out in song myself! Little did I know 20 years ago how very much Bill would be my “love of a lifetime!”
Tina prayed for us, with the most beautiful prayer. Barb pronounced us husband and wife, Bill kissed his bride and we left the stage to “Forever and Ever, Amen” by Randy Travis. 🙂
I didn’t think it was possible, but I fell in love with Bill even more Wednesday. God has blessed us…our marriage, our family and each other…more than we ever, ever dreamed of!
Bruce gave a wonderful toast with the white grape juice. We took lots more pictures, then moved down the street to the Butcher Block Steakhouse for dinner and wedding cake. (The food was excellent!) It was the perfect way to end a beautiful evening…lots of laughter, fun and good times!
I am such a blessed woman! Blessed in more ways than I can count…Married to an amazing man for 20 years who loves me incredibly and shows me so…having two wonderful and beautiful children…having an anointed pastor and friend who has walked this path of life with us…and the most incredible family and friends in the world!
I will never forget Wednesday, October 10…the most special day that we renewed our wedding vows! I feel like a newlywed all over again! 🙂
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