Monday, May 7, 2012

The Wedding Speech

Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
Philippians 2:5-7

As a wedding photographer, I've seen it all. Some dads give a sappy, tearful, goodbye to their daughters as their wedding speech. Some give an "I'll shoot you if you hurt her" type of warning. Some just reminisce about their daughter and her childhood dreams and hopes.

Not my dad.

See, I could write a whole book about what a wise and respectable man my father is. "He is the epitomy of integrity" as my sister-in-law once put it. Basically, when he speaks, you listen, because it doesn't come out much, but when it does, it's good!

I could not wait to hear what my dad had planned to say at my wedding. Was he going to embarass me and talk about how he coached my soccer team despite the fact that I never scored a single goal? Would he tell stories of our father/daughter travels to Italy, Spain, France, or Morocco? Was he going to pull out the little love notes he had hanging in his closet from me?


He gave one line.

My dad, my running partner, world travel companion, the one who not only taught me to ride a bike, but followed through every weekend with a bike ride to the library and Dairy Queen, spoke ONE LINE at my wedding.

"Kids," he said, "The best lesson you will ever learn in life is to serve one another."

Though the words were few, they changed my life. They are the words I repeat each morning as I get out of bed, and each evening as I crawl in. I think of them as I grit my teeth, wanting to shout at my husband. I think of them as I pick the tomatoes out of his dinner, so he gets the flavor without the texture. I think of them as I pull the shorts out of the laundry that I just KNOW I've already washed. Those words scream in my head, ready to stop me when I carry a dish across the kitchen in an attempt to educate my husband on proper dish washing.

I have realized in the past few months, while my husband and I watch marriages crumble for different reasons around us, that there is one key similarity in all of them. In each divorce we see, there is at least one person not willing to serve the other.

I have recently discovered that there is a huge difference between a servant and a slave. Not a difference in the nature of the work, at times, but a difference of the heart. Some days I catch myself cursing my husband in my head as I scrub the garlic (if you don't know my husband, he over-garlics EVERYTHING) off the counter, getting angry at my kids as I throw soiled clothes in the wash (as if it's something they can control?), and wishing I had more time for my own self.

I have hung a few verses up in my "angry places" (laundry room, where the dishes pile up, etc) that remind me of what a blessing it is to be a steward.

The Lord has changed my heart from one of a slave to one of a joyful servant. Whether the little things that I do for my family get noticed or not, it's about having a heart like His, from which all blessings flow.


  1. Wow this is totally wonderful.. I really like your wedding speech...

    Mother Of The Bride Speech

  2. Well said. I love it as well. You are a very wise woman my friend. :-) I learn a lot from you.