{The are pictures from Labor Day Weekend}

A family friend’s daughter is getting married this weekend, and she called today to ask me for a favor.  She said that Jeremiah’s grandfather (Dr. Maddox, his Dad’s Dad who passed away the year after we got married, and was the pastor of First Baptist Church here in Dothan for many years) had been the one to lead her father to Christ, and had become life-long friends of her parents afterwards.  She remembered Dr. Maddox praying a prayer at Jeremiah and my wedding, one that she had also heard him pray at her brother’s wedding, and she was wondering if I could get my hands on a copy. She was hoping it could be read at her daughter’s wedding this weekend.

Our wedding ceremony was, and still is, a blur to me, but I most clearly remember being shocked at the gravity of the moment.  I was blown away by what a holy, reverent, breath-taking, God-filled, heady, joyous, heart-wrenching…experience the actual ceremony was for us.  On our honeymoon, Jeremiah and I kept saying, “It really was…magical…wasn’t it?”  It was the single word we could find that could encompass all that we felt during our vows.  And while it was all those things, and I felt that I poignantly lived each moment as it happened, afterwards, I could tell you very little of what we said or did.

So tonight, as I sat down with our slightly scratched DVD and listened to Grandfather’s King’s English and resonant baritone, I was so struck by the blessing he spoke over us as we knelt at his feet.  What a powerful way to begin life together!  I am so thankful that our friend asked me for this small favor.  I know I will be forever impacted by having the chance to truly hear these words again:

Oh God of love, thou hast established marriage for the welfare and happiness of mankind.

Bound is the plan for thou did say, ”It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a helpmate for him.”  And because thou doest all things well, in holy wedlock our joys can be doubled and our burdens halved.

Bless this groom, whom thou has made a provider of this new home.  May his strength be her protection, his character be her boast and her pride, and may he so live that she will find in him the haven for which the heart of a woman truly longs.

Bless this loving bride.  Give her tenderness that will make her great.  Give her a deep sense of understanding, that inner beauty of soul that never fades, and an eternal youth that is found in holding fast to things that never age.


Teach them that marriage is not living merely for each other; it is two uniting and joining hands to serve Thee.DSC_0545

Give them a great spiritual purpose in life. May they continue to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness knowing all else shall be added unto them.

May they not expect that perfection in each other that belongs alone to Thee.  May they minimize each other’s weaknesses, be swift to praise and magnify each others strongpoints and see each other through a lover’s kind and patient eyes.

May they never take each other’s love for granted.

Dear Lord give them enough tears to keep them tender.

Enough of failure to keep their hands clenched tightly in thine.

And enough of success to make them sure they walk with God.

And when life is done and the sun is setting, may they be found then as now, still hand in hand, still thanking God for each other.

May Jeremiah and Abby serve thee happily and faithfully together until at last one shall lead the other into the arms of God.  For this we pray, in Jesus name, Amen.

9 Responses to “A Blessing”

  1. kathleen says:

    Oh my goodness! what beautiful words and photos. War Eagle.

  2. Katie Snow says:

    Amen! Just beautiful!

  3. chessa says:

    Beautiful! That is so sweet of you to share that. And with the whole blogging world!

  4. Ashley Gaskin says:

    Love this! So beautiful!

  5. Caroline says:

    That is so powerful…it encompasses everything. What a wise, wise man. I’m going to copy that down and save it for my daughter. (even though shes 11 months) I’ll credit properly.

  6. lori says:

    Wow! I had to read this prayer a second time there is so much to it. So glad you shared it. Your grandfather is probably looking down and smiling at you and your precious family. What a legacy. A blessing….

  7. Amie Ezelle says:

    Yes, very beautiful indeed! Thank you for sharing Abby!

  8. mary beth says:

    Abby! This is just so convicting and beautiful all at once. The older I get, the more I realize how much I didn’t know what I was getting into as a 19-yr-old bride. But the older I get, I’ve also discovered these very words your grandfather-in-law prayed years ago, to be the beautiful truth in marriage. I’ve just never seen it put this way! Thank you for encouraging my heart this morning and sharing this prayer. You have a right to cherish it. 🙂

  9. Dan says:

    37 years ago this prayer was offered at our wedding. As god has been faithful through the years to us, I am preparing to offer it (with my own modifications) at our Son’s wedding.

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