The Sweet Christian Bride

3 R’s for Your Wedding

by admin on December 8, 2011 in Budget, Logistics, Purpose with No Comments

Reduce, reuse, and recycle. 

I was first inculcated with the alliterative mantra of the 3R’s in my fourth grade science class.  We read The Magic School Bus and then created our own imaginary journeys into the plumbing systems, landfills, water cycles, and energy systems.  For some reason, however, the 3R’s were not in my vocabulary during my wedding planning.  I just planned based on what I wanted and how much it cost.  Looking back on it, and seeing other brides who have had low-key, outdoor, home-cooked weddings that were fabulous made me think I would have had just as great of a time if I had also factored in my social and environmental conscience.

Each of us has a different sensitivity to the compass of our social and environmental conscience, so if you read this article and think in good faith that it is totally irrelevant to you, then God bless you sister!  Plan away with the blessing of the Lord.  But if you tend to swivel towards guilt for your social and carbon footprint, then hopefully this article will help you to strategize intentionally and then to release the rest into God’s grace and mercy.  Only now is my social conscience beginning to awaken, and my environmental conscience is slowly following.  Hence this article, which I hope can be helpful for awakening yours.

I know I’m not alone in the experience of wedding expenditure regret.  Weddings have a way of causing deep pangs of buyer’s remorse—not for everyone, but not for just a few either.  Don’t get me wrong, the event is spectacular, the bride and groom are celebrated, and every dollar is given cheerfully because it has been vetted and found worth the investment.  Amidst all this measured planning and holy celebration, however, can lurk that feeling of regret or doubt that the investment analysis for this one day was slightly off, especially when standing on the receiving end of someone else’s dollar.

It might sound strange, but I think this feeling is a good thing.  The lurking suspicion along the way that things are a little too extravagant often means that they are and that you should cut back.  It’s often the discerning voice of the Holy Spirit reminding you of your part in stewardship.  And the regret experienced afterward stems from the seed of  recognition of how undeserving we all are to have received such a personalized and lavish affair.

My advice?  Along the way, pray over the details and dollars to make difficult spending decisions in the planning process so that you won’t regret anything.  That advice is a bit idealistic, however, so if it doesn’t  fully happen, do your best to reduce, reuse, and recycle the pieces of your wedding even after the fact.  And most importantly, invite God into your regret, confess if you need to, and release those feelings to Him so that you can rejoice in the grandeur of your wedding.

None of us deserve Christ’s payment for our sins either, but that doesn’t mean we should hang our heads and wallow in our sinfulness.  It means that we accept this undeserved gift with utter gratitude and humility!  All the more beautiful of a gift if it points us towards the glory of God and the humility of ourselves.  Your wedding is a gift to you.  Even if you paid for it yourself, I believe that God is ultimately the giver of this good gift.  Let it point you to the glory of God and the humility of yourself, for then you can freely rejoice in the investment of each detail in your wedding. 

In the next few posts, we’ll bring this idea of social and environmental conscientiousness to a practical level by checking out some simple ways that the 3R’s can find their way from The Magic School Bus into your wedding.

Photo © James Martin

By Lindsay

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