Tie it tight!

Wedding-Day

by Stan Mitchell

My grandmother liked to tell the story of her wedding day. The preacher conducted the ceremony without incident, then while the wedding party milled around, he told the newly weds an interesting story that had happened to him recently. He had married a couple in one county, but their certificate had been procured in another. They had to drive to the right county and undergo the ceremony all over again.

Because she always possessed a sunny disposition, my grandmother saw the humor in the situation, and laughed at the thought of the couple having to get married twice. Did they pay the preacher twice? Is the knot a little tighter when double tied? Did they get two gifts at their anniversary from then on?

Then she noticed something: My grandfather wasn’t laughing!

You guessed it; they tied the knot twice that day!

Those finicky magistrates! All it would take is for one thing to be wrong – just one – and the marriage would not be official. If the groom’s name was “Ross” and the certificate said “Horace,” the document would be blanked! If the certificate said “Washington County” and the ceremony was held in Osage, then according to the bureaucrats the wedding didn’t happen!

Is it my imagination, or does it seem like marriages lasted longer in those days? In our day we seem more concerned about the wedding than the marriage. Our weddings cost twice as much, but our commitment to each other is only half as strong. Do you suppose my grandparents remained married for life because both were perfect? Or because both understood what it meant to be faithful?

“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Proverbs 14:12, ESV).

It’s not just about tying the knot, or even tying it twice. It was about tying the knot tight. Perhaps it was that (and her sense of humor) that kept that knot tied, happily, for over sixty years!

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Stan Mitchell

Stan has preached since 1976, in Zimbabwe, California, Texas and Tennessee. He serves as preacher for the Red Walnut Church of Christ in Bath Springs, TN. He is currently Professor of Bible at Freed-Hardeman University. He is married to the former Marjorie McCarthy, and has one daughter, Tracy Watts. He is the author of four books: The Wise Get Wiser, the Foolish More Foolish: The Book of Proverbs, Give the Winds a Mighty Voice: Our Worship in Song, and Equipping the Saints for Ministry. He has recently published another book, "Will Our Faith Have Children: Developing Leadership in the Church for the Next Generation.

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