the wedding story I promised…
Hailey and I met the first day of college. Freshman year. We were both standing in front of the “auditions” sign, drawn to it like the theater geeks that we were. She wore a little too much make-up and you could pick out her laugh from across campus. I wore a little too much confidence and needed a friend like her. That first audition sign turned us into nuns in the freshman play, another led to tap dancing our way through Crazy For You. We played the roles of fairy and seductress and survived the part where I had to kiss her then-boyfriend onstage. I helped her pick out a dress for her very first dance, she painted my face with eyeliner and assured me it wasn’t too much. We shared secrets and dreams and laughed until our stomachs hurt and then laughed some more.
We graduated from college ten years ago, but between email and facebook we’ve managed to keep up with each other’s lives. No matter how little we see each other, Hailey is still one of my best friends in the world.
And last week I got to watch her marry the love of her life under an umbrella in the pouring rain. Her dad held her close with one arm and covered her from the rain with the other before he gave her away to Dave and sat down under the cover of the porch. There is nobody in this world I could be happier for than Hailey Clark Benson.
So it makes sense that I would ugly cry when she appeared around the corner. And again when they lit a candle. And one more time when she threw the bouquet off the balcony. Because I was so happy for her, right?
The ache. The one that sneaks up out of nowhere when I see the way Dave looks at her and wonder if anybody’s ever going to look at me that way. The one that chokes me a little bit when they sing
in his time
in his time
he makes all things beautiful
in his time…
because I really believe that’s true; it just must not be time yet? And the one I try to ignore when 4 couple friends all try to convince me to go catch the bouquet. Because I’ve never felt older or more alone than when I think of fighting 17 year old girls to catch a flower that promises I’ll be next.
And so once again I found myself crying at the most inopportune time. Because my heart doesn’t feel like it can hold so much joy and so much sorrow at once, surely it will explode. That must be why it keeps leaking out of my eyeballs.
This week there’s nothing else to do but cling to the Lord’s promises. Those ridiculous ones that I haven’t even seen yet. The ones that I won’t even admit out loud because you’ll surely think I’m crazy. The ones that I still believe He’ll fulfill because that’s just who he is. He can’t not.
because in the middle of my pain, or grief, and celebration He is so, so good.
because when I don’t see his provision, I believe he already has.
because when I wonder if anyone’s coming, he whispers yes.
because when I can’t tell which direction is up, he leads me on.
because he is a good, good Father and I trust him.
because he gives abundant life. to the fullest.
because he will deliver me, protect me, sustain me; fulfill his promises.
but even if he doesn’t…