Saturday, 24 August 2013

A Jesus Care Plan for a Healthy Marriage: a Short Wedding Homily for Franz and Dagmara Jonker with reference to Colossians 3:12-17 and Romans 12:9-18

Jesus is the name of The One in whom and through whom everything is taking place this afternoon. He is my boss, this is his church, he is the point all we just heard in the readings, he is the one who, for his first miracle according to John, turned a hundred and twenty or so gallons of water into fine wine for what must have been a most memorable and joyful wedding reception in Cana, he is the great bridegroom who will one day return to wed his bride, the church—an event which will set off the greatest wedding reception there ever was and for all eternity. What we celebrate today, is a foretaste of that event.

So, what’s the difference between Mother Teresa and a nurse? Mother Teresa only has to serve one God (Cami Arnold Miller). So, Franz and Dagmara, do you. One God, through his son, Jesus Christ, our LORD, the GREAT physician. Here’s part of his preventative health care plan for a good marriage from the readings we just heard. First, the Colossians passage Francesca read: Let his peace rule in your hearts, it said. Let it. No matter how clueless he seems. No matter how many jobs she wants done around the house. No matter what. The peace of Jesus. Ruling in our hearts, over every thing else.

Let his word—it's to be found in the Bible—dwell in you richly. Read it. Come to church to listen to it, pray it, sing it, eat it and drink it. Live it out for each other’s sake.

Whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the LORD Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Everything. It’s not just the “religious” stuff we need to do in his name. It’s everything—the hand-holding, the loving smile, loading the dishwasher, cleaning the toilets, the hugging, the going out for dinner, having friends over, love-making, and especially, what you’re doing today. Giving thanks.

And from the Romans passage I read: let your love for each other be genuine and mutually affectionate—mutual having and holding, just as the vows will say, from this day forward, mutual loving and cherishing with deep affection for the rest of your lives. How long is that? The prayer of blessing we will pray over you shortly says this: “Finally, in your mercy, bring them to that table where your saints feast for ever in your heavenly home.” Forever, which “can never be long enough for me to feel like I've had long enough with you,” sang Train in the song we heard as you walked up the aisle, Dagmara. Forever, never long enough, because as the song also said, “Marry me, today and every day.”

Outdo one another in showing honour to each other—you begin today as you place a ring on each other's fingers saying, "with all that I am and all that I have I honour you in the name of God."
Serve The LORD. Serving one another is an important, perhaps THE most important way of doing that from now on.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering—for better or worse, as the vows will say, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.

So there we have it. The perfect care plan for a mutually healthy marriage—peace, his word, genuine love, mutual affection, honour, rejoicing and patience. All from and for Jesus.

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