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Saturday, June 30, 2007

Wedding Rehearsals

I am back in Minnesota for the wedding of Taylor Beahrs to Ruth Calvin. Taylor was a former confirmand at Salem Covenant and close family frined. Ruth and Taylor went to Minnehaha Academy with our daughter Liz. So we flew in for the rehearsal yesterday and wedding today. I'm staying with our son Isaac in his wonderful little house in south Minneapolis and Martha was going to stay with Liz in her little apartment close to Isaac's, but Liz is moving to Atlanta Georgia on Sunday to explore teaching jobs there, so her apartment is packed up and Martha found a bed with family friends.
The rehearsal itself was on a farm south of Minneapolis owned by the Calvin family. Like all rehearsals, everyone had an opinion of where who should stand. The officiating pastor, Christian Rausch, was more polite than I normally am and let people discuss options and alterantive ideas. The rehearsal lasted just over an hour, which was pretty good. The rehearsal dinner was at a very upscale downtown Minneapolis hotel, beautifully arranged with great food and wine. Randy, the groom's dad, had a carefully orchestrated plan for remarks, prayers, toasts and a slide show of the bride and groom. By 9:30, we had heard many tender and funny stories about the couple, I made my brief remarks about our need to memorialize significant events with meals and tokens to remember, ending with a comment about the value of the wedding ring. Then the couple's premarriage counselor asked to say some words. A baptist pastor, he got up for a few words which turned into a mini-sermon on the multiple joys and challenges of marriage. It was OK, but too many words.
Why is it so hard to keep our words shorter rather than longer? The older I get as a pastor, the more I value fewer, select words over a flood of verbage with long and complicated stories. Make my life rich and my words few.

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