Imagine you have finally arrived to your wedding day. You’ve poured every effort into the details and you pray everything runs smoothly, resulting in a day full of splendor, sunshine, unity.
Instead, your groom sees you in tears. There’s a huge storm and the rain is falling. A guest is stuck at the airport. Your future mother-in-law is fighting off a powerful cold. And losing.
You’ve had it. You’re ready to tell your beloved that eloping doesn’t seem so bad.
Dry your eyes, beautiful bride, and listen carefully to the words of a woman speaking directly to you at this moment:
“Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.”
--Saint Teresa of Avila
Over the course of your married life you will be regaled with wedding day horror stories. Pouty ring bearers, missing flowers, flies in the food. Some brides may speak of attending a funeral the week before their wedding. Their sorrow is real and it hovers over their happy day. Still, Teresa’s prayer applies to them. And to you.
Saint Teresa doesn’t minimize your dismay or your suffering. She reminds us: when things fall apart, it should never steal your serenity, your peace, your solemn joy.
Here’s my story.
As a crazed bride, I forgot about my cake. Completely. Forgot. Yet it arrived on time, three-tiered with little swans. To this day, I have no idea who ordered it. I had a horrible thought that it was another bride’s cake. But no, the frosted edging matched the bridesmaids’ dresses and the linens. In my experience as a server for a catering company, wedding cakes can show up in all kinds of states: intact, a bit crumbly, or sometimes not even salvageable. We always did our best to restore and present the cakes to brides and grooms. God works through us to ensure details are not ignored or forgotten. We care, because he cares.
When you talk to seasoned brides and grooms who have been married for years, ask what they remember about their wedding. Chances are, most of the memories of the bad stuff have faded. Those things have passed away. What remains is the love, and the covenant with your spouse, bound by God.
As a bride, it is natural to expect something to go wrong, as you plan with anticipation or try to head off a glitch or two. But there’s no predicting human nature or weather. Saint Teresa wants you to know that just because you can’t foresee the unexpected, it shouldn’t ruin your happiness. No one is suggesting you should laugh away a broken heel or a ripped veil. But breathe deeply, put it in the hands of God, and humbly ask for help. He is so close. He’s interested in every detail of your wedding. Even the cake.
About the Author: Bernadette Sukley has been in publishing for over 25 years—and married for 33. She’s written and published fiction and nonfiction books, short stories and articles. Her work has appeared in international magazines, including Sports Illustrated for Women, Women’s Health and Men’s Health. She has worked as a server at a wedding and event venue, a trauma unit nurse’s aide, a local reporter and a substitute teacher at an intermediate unit for autistic children.