Sunday, March 31, 2019

Extraordinarily Lucky

Saturday evening, Reverend Barron Bell and I co-officiated Renee and Jake’s wedding ceremony, at Parker Manor, in Weatherford, Texas. Here are the remarks I shared with them and their guests:

I have a split professional personality. I officiate interfaith weddings, and I work for a nonprofit charged with ending homelessness. In the latter role, I spend much time thinking about the idea of luck and privilege, and recognizing that you have it.

This is why I love what Jake says about you, his family and friends: “I have lived an extraordinarily lucky and blessed life. (I have) amazing friends and (a) loving family. I have so so much to be thankful for. (Pause for affect) Actually… so do they, because I am pretty great myself.”
Renee recognizes how lucky and blessed she is too. I got to see this with my own eyes, since the first time I met Renee and Jake in the flesh, as opposed to by FaceTime, Renee’s parents joined us too. You could tell from watching and listening to Renee, how appreciative she was of her parents, and how much she values them and her family.

Recognizing your privilege and your luck in life is tremendously important in any relationship, but especially in marriage. Marriage is the most intense relationship we have, and raising a family makes it only more intense, especially if your idea of a family is Renee’s. I am not making this up; here is what she wrote: “I can’t wait to be his wife and have 4 kids and a ranch with horses and cows.” Jake, I don’t know if her not mentioning the number of each animal is good or bad news. I won’t be around to find out… You will!

Fortunately, Renee and Jake recognize the privilege and luck they have in having found each other, and have formed their unique relationship that today they take to the next step. To wit, Jake says, “I love Renee. She is beautiful, smart, fun, kind, and generous. She inspires me and makes me better every day. She’s the life of every party, even though she always gets there late.”

And Renee says, “He can always turn my frown upside down. He has always been there for me. He supports me, teaches me, encourages me, and most importantly, loves me with all of his heart.”

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