Encouragement for the (Wedding) Weary

'To Do's' photo (c) 2011, Courtney Dirks - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Maybe you are planning a wedding and the pressure and details of it all are getting to you today. Maybe you're not planning a wedding, but the pressure and details of day-to-day life are getting to you today. I'm at that place almost constantly, and here is what God is graciously teaching me.

In light of eternity you might think, What does is matter which chairs we choose? Or, Who cares what the centerpieces look like? These are mundane decisions—the banal details that can send an otherwise sane bride over the edge. But while planning a wedding is an unusual experience, having to carry out seemingly pointless tasks is not.

I have two small children, and at this stage in my life many days are a series of seemingly pointless tasks. I change diapers, I wipe noses, I do laundry, I build block towers just to have them knocked down. There are many moments when these things seem pointless. And yet I know they are not, and here are just two of many reasons why:

First, they are the tasks given to me for this season of life by a sovereign God who loves me dearly.

Second, these little moments are the means by which God uses me to accomplish a bigger task—loving my children and teaching them the truth of the gospel.

In your wedding planning, you will most likely not care about every decision you must make. And this is not a call to place more importance on things than necessary. I don’t make a huge deal out of making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. It’s a sandwich. But I must do it so that my children’s tummies will be full and they will know they are loved and cared for. And if I get to teach them about Jesus while they’re eating, that’s great! But have you ever tried to teach a toddler something when they are hungry? It’s not happening.

Similarly, the chairs, the dishes, the food, the centerpieces—in the light of eternity these little decisions just do not matter. What does matter is having seats for your guests and feeding them as you celebrate together. The decisions are not the end in and of themselves. Rather, they are the means to an end. And even accomplishing the means can be an act of worship as you faithfully complete the tasks God has given you to do.

The act of making a pb&j or hand-crafting a centerpiece will not earn God's favor, any more than teaching or preaching will. These actions do not save us, and they do not even sanctify us. All of that is the work of God through His Son. I frequently must remind myself of the truth of Ephesians 2:8-10:

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

We were created, in Christ, for good works. But the joy comes in knowing God prepared these works beforehand, and all we must do is walk in them--in the faith He has given us.

So today, walk in the Spirit. Pray over each step--the big decisions and the small. And then just make a choice and rest, knowing you cannot earn anything through your work anyway. Rather, you can walk in faith, fully equipped for what you are called to do, to the praise and glory of Christ Jesus.