Sometimes I resonate with the old Hee Haw song, "Gloom, despair and agony on me!"
But more often, I live with a quiet confidence that God is working through me and in spite of me and all around me. This Saturday, I officiated at the wedding of Alex Howell and Curtis Getz. Alex has been in the church since I confirmed her as a sixth grader so it was a special joy for me to share with them.
At the rehearsal, we had some electrical problems - there was a storm the night before and not all of the power was working - you didn't want air conditioning at the church on a Saturday afternoon in June, did you? Is it okay if the florescent lights flicker on and off? Just pretend they are Christmas lights!
Our Trustees Chairperson, Dan Rempe, came out and got to work.
In the meantime, we had the rehearsal and everything went well. After we finished, feeling good about the ceremony which is now only hours away, I casually reminded the bride and groom to bring their marriage license to the church the next day so that I could fill it out.
Instead of "Of course, Sam," I received some blank stares.
"You did stop by the courthouse this week to pick it up didn't you?"
"Umm... Curtis just flew in this afternoon."
Curtis serves in the Air Force and they hadn't had time to pick it up.
At this point, it was after 5 pm and I knew the courthouse would be closed. It wouldn't reopen until Monday.
"We can still have the ceremony and we'll have to pick up the license on Monday. You'll both have to be there because you'll both need to sign it."
But this didn't work either because he was flying back for duty - leaving on Sunday morning.
Imagine being a young couple just trying to get married on a tight schedule, knowing that relatives were already here from out of town. What do you do?
It is at this point that we see how connections can work for good. I believe that God works through our connections - our relationships with one another. God is working for good in our lives.
Lois Dickerson was there helping out. She was there because she served the church as a greeter. She happened to see Alex at church the week before (Alex teaches one of our children's Sunday school classes) and Alex invited her to the wedding. So Lois came to help out where needed that evening.
Lois's brother-in-law is Judge Ken Dickerson of Piedmont and so I asked for the number and I called him for advice.
After explaining the situation, he said that he knew the Canadian County Clerk, Marie Ramsey. He would contact her and call me back.
Judge Dickerson called back and reported that she was waiting in El Reno for the couple if they would leave now. I relayed this information to them and they hit the road (obeying all traffic laws I'm sure).
Amazingly, they managed to get their license. The electricity was also fixed and in working order for the wedding (yeah for air condition!). The ceremony was beautiful and everyone was happy.
At the reception, the DJ was a no-show. But the guests pooled their Ipods and got the music going on their own. "DJ? We don't need no stinkin' DJ!"
|Curtis and Alex Getz signing their marriage license.|
It would have worked even if they didn't get the license. They would have had the ceremony and Alex would have had to fly to South Carolina where they would have had a justice of the peace sign their license. Messier and not ideal at all but do-able. But it did work out. The cool thing is now they have a great story to share with future generations.
This reminds me to remember how God is at work in our lives. For my good as well as yours. It also reminds me that connections are important and helpful.
How is your activity within the Body of Christ?
We are stronger with you than without you!
And I believe you are stronger with us than without us.
But that is just my faith talking...