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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Favors

I went to pick up "The Dress" on a Saturday.  And quite naturally David's Bridal was a zoo.  As I looked around at all the brides to be, both young and old(er), I marveled in all this.  The dress, the shoes, the bridesmaid/maid of honor/ matron of honor dresses, the alternations, the this, the that and the other. 

Weddings are definitely a business.  And I must admit I am caught up in the wedding business right now.   

My list consists of: booking the wedding site, choosing & buying decorations, picking out the MOH dress; finding shoes that are cute - but won't won't hurt my feet & the list goes on.  Music for the 'first dances' -  the first dance with my husband (wow - 233 days until this he will be my husband--- but I digress go) & the first dance with my brother, his first dance with his mother.  Just like every other bride, I suppose, I want everything to be 'perfect'.  That said, since I tend more towards realism in my life - I know that not everything will be perfect.  Stuff happens.  Life happens.  

But there are a few things that I am focusing on in hopes of perfection. They are the vows; my dress; the tux; the processional music; and the favors.  Now the first 4 on this list probably strike you as normal.  But you got to the 5th one and thought "Lord, she is off her rocker.  Why try to make favors perfect?"

I have spent countless hours on-line looking at wedding favors.  I've considered: measuring spoons with cute sayings like "Love Beyond Measure" (but if you don't like to cook, this probably isn't practical) ; a candy bar with jars of red & silver candy that guests can scoop into little boxes or satchels, (but does everyone really like candy?); coffee flavoring in cute bottles and Hershey's kisses in cute little satchels (figuring the folks who love coffee will like the flavoring & those who don't like coffee will like the chocolate).  There have been so many other ideas... 

And I am going a little nutty trying to figure this out - but I'm still firmly on my rocker.  You are probably thinking "they are 'just favors'--- people won't remember them after the day is over.

But really, they aren't 'just' favors. 

They are so much more; they are an expression of my love for each and every guest.  They are my way of saying "thank you for your prayers", "thank you for believing in me", "thank you for loving the very flawed me".  

You see, these people are my family.  Some by blood, others by choice.  These are the people who believed in me when I couldn't or wouldn't believe in myself.  These are the people who believed I would be successful in business one day.  They believed that I was, & am, a good mother.  They believed I was doing my best - even when I couldn't pay the rent, or the electric bill, or the gas bill - AGAIN!    

These favors symbolize a heartfelt token for all the wonderful people who have supported me over the years.  If not for their kindness, their prayers, their listening ears and wise words, I would not be where I am today. 

These people all, at one time or another, did me a "favor".  They probably thought it was small. 

Those 'favors' over the years, especially the difficult years, were the manifestation of Jesus in everyone who chose to care for my boys and me.  

Have you heard the saying: "You may be the only Jesus someone sees today"?  

On that day when someone said a prayer for us, gave us food, mentored me so I could be promoted (to at least make ends meet), Jesus was shining through.

When someone watched my baby for free while I worked at night to buy the older boys Nike sneakers that they wanted sooooooo much.  When someone gave my children toys on Christmas when I simply couldn't.  Jesus was shining.

When someone took my sick baby ever so gently as I stood in Children's Hospital ER crying so hard, I couldn't see.  Jesus was in the arms of the stranger who hugged me & assured me my baby would live. 

I could go on and on about the 'favors' people did for me over the past 25 years, but you get the picture.  And I'm sure you understand why having the exact right wedding favors for my guests is so very important. 

Those favors should say...

"Thank you for allowing Jesus to shine through you so I could see Him through my clouds of gloom!"