Why I’m getting Married Young

I was recently at a local coffee shop sipping on my drink that I had paid way too much for, when I overheard a conversation that inspired this blog post. To make a long story short, a young man and woman were discussing the current “trend” of Christian college students getting engaged and married off the minute after they received their diplomas. The woman vowed that she would never settle down so early and that she wanted to make something of herself before she brought another person into the mix. She wanted to travel, see the world, and have a career before she found herself barefoot and pregnant. I had to laugh a little as I walked out of the coffee shop and glanced down at my engagement ring. It amazed me how our views on marriage were so different.

I want to first start off by saying that everyone’s story is different. The author of our lives never tells the same story twice. Some get married young and some wait until the timing is perfect. Others want to get married young but can’t seem to find that perfect catch. Statistics, however, tell us that those who marry young have a higher success rate in being happy and a lower chance of getting divorced. Why is this? Many speculate that when two people are young and just starting out in life, they cling to one another. There is no successful career, no separate bank accounts, and no fight over which apartment to sell. Everything is new, the floor plans for the building have just been drawn. My fiancé once put it this way. We can spend our twenties on ourselves, going from one relationship to the other, seeing beauty but having no one to share it with or we can invest in one person and build a life together.

With all that being said, and in all due respect to the strangers in the coffee shop, here are the reasons I will be getting married at age 22

  1. I HAVE FOUND THE ONE WHOM MY SOUL LOVES

It’s hard to explain this to those of you who have not found your life-long partner in crime, but all I can say is that when you know…you know. My future husband is not perfect but he is absolutely one hundred percent perfect for me. Everything that I lack he has and every gift and ability I possess, he encourages. When you find someone that makes you better and brings you peace you have got to grab ahold of that person. A former roommate of mine once said, “He will either push you closer to Christ or closer to himself.” It’s a very rare thing to find a man of God who wants nothing more than for you to become spiritually stronger, even if that means putting his needs below yours. I say all this because sometimes life is messy, the timing isn’t right, or complications arise but when you find the one whom your soul loves it doesn’t matter what age you are—all that matters is making sure you never let them go.

  1. I WANT TO SHARE MY LIFE

I cannot tell you the number of times I’ve heard “Are you sure you don’t want to do anything more with your life before you get married?” There is this idea in our culture that life ends after marriage. Any adventure that I want to have, any accomplishments that I strive to achieve, or any crazy mistake I want to have needs to happen before I say “I Do.” I would argue that any adventure, accomplishment, or mistake will be a thousand times more meaningful, joyful, and impactful if I share it with my husband. Scripture tells us that we were not meant to walk alone. Our creator created Eve to help Adam and Vis versa. My life is not ending, it’s only just beginning and how wonderful that I get to share every important moment of my life with someone who loves me with no conditions. How wonderful that all of his big moments will be mine as well.

  1. I HAVE FOUND THE FATHER OF MY CHILDREN

Last semester I took a chemistry class and one of the lectures was focused on pregnancy. My professor explained all the harmful things to be aware of staying away from when pregnant. She also went on to say that women’s bodies are the most fertile and the most likely to produce a healthy delivery and child when a woman is in her twenties. I raised my hand and said, “So what you’re saying is that God is practically telling us to have children when we’re young.” She laughed sheepishly and said “well no, I very much enjoyed my twenties as a single and childless woman.” This idea that children need to come later in life, and that they need to be few and far between has only recently been a part of our way of thinking. Since the beginning of time children have always been seen as a blessing. In fact, scripture condemns those who try to have their cake and eat it too (Genesis 38:8-10). Marriage is a covenant, and part of that covenant is the gift of life. Getting married and having children young has its perks and I am so excited to share the wonderful blessing of being parents with my husband in the future.

Whether your story is similar to mine or maybe polar opposite, I hope this sheds some light on those crazy kids committing their lives to one another. Yes, we’re taking some risks, and no this life isn’t always going to be easy but we’re jumping feet first into an adventure that will last a lifetime.

What marriage represents

All fairy tales, wedding dresses and flowers aside I really wanted to take the time and write about what I feel marriage represents both here on earth and in heaven. I struggled for a long time about the metaphor of Christ and His church symbolizing The Groom and his Bride.

I see Christ as a father and a friend. I see him as a support system and someone to lean on, but not as a groom. I wasn’t sure if the metaphor was only supposed to be grasped by certain people or all of us. Then I came across a song entitled “My Beloved”. It was written by Tenth Avenue North and it is a song of Jesus singing to his bride. Listening to it was my first step towards understanding.

http://youtu.be/6CUGTIWCFyo

 

Another struggle that kept me away from this concept was why a man and woman even though so in love would stay together for the rest of their lives. As much as I claim to be a hopeless romantic I still couldn’t quite wrap my head around unconditional love between unrelated people. Second Corinthians tells us about what real love is and all that it contains. Before I would apply it to marriage and then as if a light bulb went on in my head I realized the love that’s talked about in the bible isn’t between two people but Christ and his bride.

The Lord loves us like a Groom is supposed to love his bride. We are his beloved and the joining of two people here on earth is a symbolism of the joining of us to the Lord Jesus Christ. The commitment is never supposed to be broken. Divorce is not an option just as in Christ’s eyes leaving us or letting us go is not even a thought in His mind

So if that big day comes for you in your life and you’re centering your tie one last time or fluffing your dress once more before you take your first steps down the airse. Please remember that this special day is only a glimpse of how the Lord sees the joining of his children to Himself. When we commit to love one another for better or worse it’s not just words. It’s a life time. For God it’s eternity.

A dueeeeaaammmm is a wish your hauurrtt makes.

Recalling back to my child hood days I am struck by the amount of wedding ceremonies in Disney movies.

First we have Cinderella in her classic white ball gown and her prince all decked out in his big kind shoulder pads and metals. They are whisked away in a carriage and driven off to their happily ever after. This fairy tale couple has also been compared to Prince William and Kate

 

Next we have the Little Mermaid. Ariel and Eric were married on a ship as her father approved on a rock nearby. They waved goodbye to the sea as they were sailed away to complete and utter bliss. As a side note I find it a tad alarming that Eric and Ariel didn’t speak more than 5 sentences to each other through the entire movie.

Next is Beauty and the Beast. There is slight controversy on whether or not Belle and Beast were actually married in the movie or not. All we see is all of their loved ones watching them dance in the ballroom. We would assume marriage except for the fact that Belle is wearing a yellow ball gown as a opposed to a white one.

Aurora and Philip in “Sleeping Beauty” have a similar ending to their happily ever after as well. Both dance together and the story ends with “And they lived happily ever after”

Aurora and Phillip Funny cartoons

Snow white and her prince Charming simply ride off into the sunset with a last picture of a castle and of course a “happily ever after”

And we wonder why marriage and weddings has been imbedded in our brains for so long;)

 

 

Grove City College Weddings

Simply because of curiosity I looked into what it would take to be married on the campus of Grove City College. The results were kind of surprising. For a GCC student or alum the church costs 400.00 for a 3 hour allotted time ceremony and one hour rehearsal the night before. The stipulations are very specific. The 3 hours include getting ready in the church as well as decorating.   

Nothing can be removed from the church for the ceremony. There is a summer wedding schedule as well as a winter one. All of which have allotted times to get married. I can’t find a lot of stats on how many alums get married here but in my experience I’ve witnessed 3 weddings here in the past school year.

Whether or not you decide to get married in Harbison Chapel I think it’s important to note that marriage is marriage no matter where you commit to it. Of course we always make fun of Grove City College students and how they’re always getting married right out of school. After a few surveys of both girls that are in relationships and single I have come up with a few positive and negative reasons to get married on campus.

After surveying my hall, most girls have said they would not get married in Harbison. Their reasons include the distance from family, it’s too cliché, and bad memories from having to sit in there for four years. The minority who said they would get married in the chapel said it was beautiful and would represent where they met their future husband.

 

Wedding Traditions

As most of these blogs are about weddings, anniversaries and the commitment to love I feel it is necessary to address the traditions, “curses”, and ceremonial events of the wedding day. I think it should also be kept in mind that everyone has a different spin on traditions. I will be expressing what I grew up learning and observing and will also be taking into account a few traditions I just learned about.

First and foremost A bride gets ready with her bridal party. There can be one of two locations for this. One being a hotel or venue that is close to the church or the home the bride grew up in and has many fond memories. The groom no matter where he is, is never in the same room or home as the bride during this time

Secondly, though this is not for everyone, a common practice during the prep time is for the bride and groom to exchange gifts via bridal party. They have either written each other letters the night before or the morning of and these are exchanged and read before walking down the aisle.

Most of the time the Bride and Groom get pictures together after the ceremony because the bride and groom are not supposed to see each other before they say “I do”. It is considered bad luck. Another tradition is for the father to walk the bride down the aisle. It represents the main man in her child hood giving her away to the main man in her adult life

The reception is usually accompanied by a father daughter dance, a first couple dance and occasionally a mother son dance. The couple traditionally cuts the cake together and thanks the guests for coming. Though less common now, a couple will also perform a dollar dance.

Near the end of the night the Bride will throw her bouquet and all the single women gather around to catch it. The Groom will grab the garter from the Bride’s leg and throw it to all the bachelors in the room. Tradition says that the woman who catches the bouquet will be married next and so will the man who catches the garter.

These are just a few wedding traditions that occur on people’s special days.

The Kardashian Wedding

Even if you don’t “keep up with” the Kardashians I’d be willing to bet you at least heard of the lightning speed marriage between Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphris. The wedding took place in Montecitio on June 28, 2011. Some well-known guests included Ryan Seacrest, Lindsay Lohan, and Kathy Lee Gifford. The bride’s step dad for 20 years, Bruce Jenner, walked Kim down the aisle.

Both bride and groom changed into different outfits for the reception. According to the news this wedding was heavily protected by security. Even guests were instructed to leave cell phones and cameras at home. The reception was covered by tents to prohibit pictures from being taken above.

There were 400 guests in attendance and the bride wore a Vera Wang dress. Kim’s sister Kourtney’s son was the ring bearer and stole the show with his little white tux.

The cake was 6 feet tall!

After the break up many wondered what happened to Kim’s 20 karot engagement ring. It was later found out that she kept it and the estimated value is 2 million.

The marriage lasted 72 days. There is yet to be disclosure over what exactly went wrong

Response~ millions of dollars were put into this wedding. It was the event of the year. It shocks me how extremely extravagant this event was and yet no amount of money can save a marriage.

Paper Back Weddings

Recently I discovered a website called paperbackweddings.com. This company films every aspect of dozens of weddings. This includes the applying of make-up, the look in the mother of the brides eyes as the wedding dress is slipped onto her daughter, the limo driving off into the sunset and everything in between. For every wedding this company is left with hours and hours of footage. With this footage they pick out the very best and create a video montage lasting only 20 minutes. At first I was skeptical. How can anyone illustrate the greatest day of your life in 20 minutes….and then I watched one of their creations.

(Above ~ Ian and Corbett)

The first wedding I watched was of the marriage of Ian and Corbett. I can honestly say I feel in love with them in the first five minutes. What’s different about paper back weddings is that they get to know the couple before they begin shooting. After watching every video ever made by this company I can attest that each one is unique to the different personalities of each couple. Another unique characteristic of this program is that they will sometimes have music in the background of a once chaotic or sound filled shot and instead we see the shot in silence as a beautiful melody is played. Sometimes we hear sound and conversation, which allows the viewer to take in the reality of what is about to happen.

My favorite part of most of these beautiful films is the giving of gifts to the bride and groom from each other before the big walk down the aisle

(Above ~ Corbett walking down the aisle with mother and father)

Never before have I seen such moving wedding films, and I don’t even know these people:) Ian and Corbett were married last summer. They were the first couple to hire paper back weddings. Since then the company has flourished with more than 100 clients.

The theme of this wedding was very non traditional and yet classy all at the same time. The groomsman wore khakis, white button down shirts and colorful Sperrys. The bridesmaids all wore different colorful dresses with cowboy boots.

(Above ~ Corbett and her bridesmaids)

I love that paper back doesn’t stick with one kind of demographic. The next wedding filmed was in england, another by poolside in Alabama. I have noticed that all the ceremonies so far take place outside.

For better or worse for richer or poorer paperbackweddings.com has redefined the definition of documenting one’s wedding. I would recommend this company for anyone wanting to make their big day even more special.