Outdoor Wedding Adventures

Through the years I have officiated a number of outdoor weddings. Some have been in the mountains, by the sea, by a barn, and by a lake. Outdoor weddings can be a challenge sometimes because you are at the mercy of the the weather conditions and the environment. I have been interrupted during the ceremony by uninvited guests such as wild ducks and wild turkeys and mosquitos and yes…even bears.
Once while doing a wedding in the mountains, I didn’t know there was a bear behind me. I had my back to the woods and everyone else was facing me and could see the bear. During the ceremony my friend Scott Andrews, who was singing at the wedding whispered to me..”Bear” and I would whisper back to him “What?” ..because “Bear” is my nickname. Finally, he pointed behind me, and I glanced there and saw a real Bear! This became the shortest wedding ceremony I have ever done…The bear left and we did too, fortunately the reception was in the opposite direction…
You know, just like outdoor weddings can have some unexpected surprises, our daily lives can too. There are sometimes we are not prepared for the unexpected things we may encounter. What is encouraging for us though, is that nothing surprises God. He is always there..ahead of us, often times with the solution in place before we even knew about the problem. If we really believed that it would help us we we encounter an unexpected crisis in our lives. David in the Bible, encountered many unexpected experiences in his life, yet he wrote in Psalms 34:19(NCV)…”People who do what is right may have many problems, but The Lord will solve them all.”

Thank You Molly T. for Believing In Me

In the fabric of our lives, there are those special people who God has used to encourage us at key times in our lives. For me, one of those was Molly T. When I was I was a youth pastor (years ago), two of her children Rob and Susan were in the youth group at my church. Molly would often host youth Bible Studies at her home on Monday nights. It became a favorite place for kids to gather.As a young youth pastor, I would sometimes get discouraged and overwhelmed but Molly would just talk with me, help me keep things in perspective and I would keep going, she was an encourager to me and many of her family and friends.
One of her favorite mottos was “say kind words”. I had the honor to speak at her memorial service yesterday. Those “kind words” were easy for me to say because of her and her family have been such good friends to me through the years. I am so glad that I took the opportunity to say thank you to her several times through the years before she went home to Heaven.
Often times, the people God uses to encourages us the most are those who just there and believe in us when we need it the most. Thanks Molly T. for believing in me…