Thursday, 1 September 2011

English Weddings and Grey London Love

I went "home" to England last week. And my soul was refreshed.

My college friends Adelina and James got married and I had the distinct pleasure of being a bridesmaid at the celebrations. It was a beautiful day in every way-- from the look on James' face when he first saw his stunningly beautiful little bride walking toward him down the aisle, to the laughter and joy on every guest's face throughout the day. The Clarke wedding reminded me of why I like weddings so much. A celebration of love, indeed!

 Adelina's friend Abi and I had such fun serving her together on her big day! And praying for her and supporting her in the months beforehand. Friendship is such a beautiful gift from the heart of God!

James was a total British jokester in college, and Adelina was a perfect Ukrainian angel. They hardly seemed an appropriate fit at first. But what a beautiful journey it has been to watch God use each of them for one another's good. Adelina's maturity and heart has mellowed our crazy James out, and his confidence and fun, has made her glow :)

I couldn't help but be a bit teary when James exclaimed over God's grace at giving Adelina to him as his wife in his speech at the reception. He was astounded at the way this woman loves. And she does. She is one of those rare people who just seem to exude gentleness and kindness and tender love. She has alot to teach the world, but she doesn't realize it at all :)

And of course, no trip to England would be complete without some good old-fashioned girlfriend time!! Amanda, Abbie, Ali, and I managed to sneak a girlie slumber party into the wedding weekend schedule :) And my heart was filled right up!

(Oh college years! You have been better to me than all the rest combined. So so so many lessons learned and experiences had and so much love shared and tears shed and wiped away and always endless laughter and joy underneath it all... It was such a delight to revisit you for a weekend :))


After a few days staying with dear friends in the Cotswolds, where my heart just about comes home, and the mad rush of the deliciously fun wedding weekend, I had a few days at the end in London with my man, to fill up on hand-holding and being wrapped up in long, warm arms for the next month of being apart again...

I visited a friend on her lunchbreak in the downtown hospital where she's a nurse, reveling in the wonder that I still feel every time I look at the skyline of this city and see the gothic architecture of Parliament and Big Ben looming over my little mid-west farming country head...And afterwards, I walked along the south bank of the Thames in the bright grey London day and I thought about Jesus and the adventure it is to love Him and the places His love takes us if we let it. I thought about all the heavy things I carry and heard Him ask again if I will just lay it all down and let Him do it. I meandered through an open-air secondhand book stall under a bridge and sat on a bench overlooking the Thames with the masses rushing by. A homeless man approached me asking for a pence or two, and I felt the smallness of what little I could do to make things better in this world, and as he walked away with a "Thank you, Miss", I thought about the paradigm of being His Kingdom here on earth, and yet waiting for its arrival with every breath.

We are only here to extend our feeble hands in love. Every time. While the real work of bringing that Kingdom is left up to Him.

And He reminded me of what it is to rest in His Bigness in light of my littleness that grey day strolling along the Thames.

Thank you, lovely London.
Thank You, lovely Lord.

1 comment:

Emmie said...

Love the title of this post and everything else...the bridesmaid dresses were gorgeous! That color was perfect for you!:)

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