A good friend of mine and his fiancé called me a month ago and asked me if I would be willing to officiate their wedding ceremony. This is only the second request I have had to do a wedding, but I was honored they would ask me to be a part of such a huge day in their lives.
This is not a role I take lightly as I realize the importance of marriage, and what the act means in terms of commitment. The act of marriage reflects something very beautiful when it is blessed by God.
When I asked my friends why they requested that I do the ceremony they answered me, “We want a spiritual tone at our wedding Tim, and you are one of the most spiritual people we know. We want a good mix of God & spirituality, but something not overly religious.”
Does this allude to an inherent need for God in our lives, but a fear of committing to organized religion? While it is OK to be ‘spiritual’ [or in my definition recognize that there is something outside our humanity that is making all this work], it is not necessarily socially ‘OK’ to be religious or identify with organized religious institutions.
You may be surprised to know that I embrace the idea of spiritual relationship over organized religion. I think Jesus preached this message while he was on Earth. When I think about the relational experience I have had with Christ in my life, I think of everything but stale religious gospel. Similar to when I think about my relationship with my wife, I think about something beautiful, growing and changing. I don’t think of a laundry list of do’s and don’ts or a contract where I just have to uphold my end of the bargain to stay married. I believe that Christ is the Truth, but I don’t think that religion always brings you closer to that Truth anymore that signing a piece of paper leads to a healthy marriage.
We serve a God that wants to commune with us on a spiritual level. He wants our hearts and our souls, not necessarily our pocketbooks and hail mary’s. A recent article headline I read this week said: Survey: 72% of Millennials ‘more spiritual than religious’ . If 72% of Millennials truly searched for spiritual truth, they would find it. God promises this. [Jeremiah 29:13 ] Unfortunately for many, I think the wish to be labeled as ‘spiritual’ is a cop-out to try to fill an empty hole without commitment to believe in Christ.
As I prepare ‘something spiritual’ for my friend’s wedding ceremony, I pray that they will see the hand of God through their special day, and that His blessings will be evident. It will be more than a religious ceremony called marriage, it will be a reflection of Christ’s love and desire for relationship with us. Something spiritual.
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.