simple casual wedding garment with sleeves

Happy 40th Anniversary to our parents!!

5/20/16--Day 134 and Counting!

"...being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." --Phil. 1:6

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A Reflection: Today Marks a VERY Special Day--Another Sweet Celebration...

On this day 40 years ago, Jim and Liz Paauw took an oath to love each other "In sickness and in health for as long as they both shall live." They did this in the Calvin College seminary chapel with pink and white carnations adorning the church and with rings exchanged as they prayerfully entered their marriage centered on Christ.

This took place in front of several witnesses, many of which were family members sporting awesome baby blue wedding dresses and tuxedos! This group brings to life for me visually the image of the great "cloud of witnesses" that help spur on in faith (Hebrews 12).

We will not be marking the 40th wedding anniversary today with a big family trip or large gathering. Rather, we will be in a recreational-therapy room that we've reserved at my mom's rehabilitation facility. Someone will wheel my mom down from her room to participate. She won't get cake. It sounds sad at first,right? Let me shed some light on our feelings despite the circumstance.

I cannot begin to tell you how monumentally exciting this event will be... mom made it! It has been 134 days since the car accident. Not one day has come without one stress or another and she still has yet to get a fresh breath of air outside of a hospital setting since the accident. Who cares--she is breathing and smiling. She has been given her voice again! Through this unique journey my parents have strengthened their love for each other and modeled for a watching world what "Love you in sickness and in health for as long as we both shall live" means. simple casual wedding garment with sleeves

At the heart of the joy in this success is growing love and a commitment, not the time-frame. The Bible reminds us that "We love because Christ first loved us." (1 John 4). Jesus Christ gave His life out of that love for us. He knows that we are living "sick" from our own sin and that breaks His heart--it is painful to watch someone you love suffer.

Jesus Christ himself promises to love us for as long as we live and with His perfect sacrifice on the cross, if we believe, we WILL LIVE eternally WITH him. We see Jesus Christ state this in John 15:13.

No matter what your circumstance is today, no matter what you have been through or will go through... hold on to that promise. Make the day count. Grow in love because He first loved us.

So, as we celebrate 134 days of life with our mom in this trying time and more importantly 40 years of marriage for mom and dad, may it be a blessing not only to us but all who believe in Christ and the gift He has given out of love (even through our "sickness and sin"). BELIEVE! We serve a risen savior!!
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