…on umbros and wedding dresses

Recently, a young, “common” woman became a princess.  That is to say, she married the Prince of England and became, forevermore, royalty.  The wedding, of course, was legendary.

The whole thing supposedly cost between $30 and $60 million.  There was an $80,000 wedding cake, regal horses marching and a horse drawn carriage, the majestic cathedral and all the other fanciful machinations. The Bride, it is said, had 6 professional hair dressers that day.  She spent $434,000 on her dress—and who could forget it?

About a million Brits lined the streets to catch even so much as a glimpse of such an event.  Estimates range from 3 million to 2 billion people who tuned in all across the world on their televisions to watch the “show”.  A whole lot of them watched it multiple times.  As anyone would guess, every little girl (meaning every girl between the ages of 2 and 102) watched with excitement and awe and fantasy and that gigglish dreamy sense of enchantment—this was every girl’s ultimate fantasy come true: Walt Disney in real life.

So what would compel the entire world to become obsessed with such a wedding?  How does one convince tens of thousands to attend and millions upon millions more to joyfully watch and observe, analyze and dissect?  One theory is that the royal family commissioned thousands—even tens of thousands of government employees to go out into the highways and the hedges of the United Kingdom, to hand out tracts and engage in monologic conversations with strangers about how wonderful the wedding would be, threatening however, that if they decided not to come and line the streets, the British government would harass them with a tremendous fine that would surely put them in permanent debt.  Their strategy was to convince those Brits how empty their life was without that incredible wedding.  They shelled out tens of millions in television advertising all across the globe, to tell the good news of the wedding and blackmail violence to any community anywhere that would not rally around the wedding.  Since royal lovers deserve royal weddings, it was imperative, after all, that the masses come and rejoice in it.

That’s just a theory of course.  And a bad one.  It would never work, its stupid, and everyone would hate the Brits.  And yet, the masses lined up and tuned in and bought the ridiculous memorabilia, so they did something right.

I think there is a profound yearning in the heart of every individual to marvel at Royal Splendor.  To be a part of a story that has an ancient history and appears to have no end in sight—eternal, one might say.  There is a profound yearning to gaze upon something incredibly beautiful and to look upon majesty and grandness and this, Kate and the Royal Family nailed.

So what if the Church learned from Charles and Kate?  What if the Bride of Christ invested all Her energies into covering Herself with the most beautiful good deeds, charitable acts and movements of grace and love?  What if the Bride really was beautiful?  What if all attending were providing their best suit of clothes and gathering up the most driven excitement and energy the world could imagine?  You see, Kate could have been a good Brit and wore Umbro shorts and a tee shirt for the wedding, but she didn’t.  No bride ever would.

I too often see two kinds of believers—those who want people to come to the wedding, so they go around convincing folks they’re doomed if they don’t come, and then others (the majority) who simply act like they don’t care if anyone else comes to the wedding.  But what if we were so obsessed with our own wedding to The Groom that we wanted the whole world to come?  What if, like Kate (and any other bride), we wanted to be as beautiful as we could possibly be for our wedding day.  And what if this wedding story became so beautiful and grand and eternal in the eyes of the world that they couldn’t resist but to marvel and anticipate that glorious day?  What if we invested so much in making this world beautiful, the world decided to celebrate and create that beauty with us?

On the last day, the Church will finally be wed to Christ.  It will be a glorious banquet—more glorious than ten thousand royal weddings.  The wedding dress we will wear will be the love, truth, humility and holiness that we wore in this life.  So.  Will we wear an extravagant, beautiful, white dress, or will the Royal Bride wear umbros and a tee shirt?  What we wear may decide who shows up.

rev 19.7-9

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