Saturday, November 01, 2014

:So you want to get married?:

"Mawwiage. Mawwiage is what bwings us togethew today." (?)

When Phil and Kayla asked me to officiate their wedding, they gave me great honor. They inspire me, which sounds a little cliche, but I'll be honest with you folks. Have you spent time with these two, this couple?

They are full of life and so caught up within each other's flow. They are endless in their mirth, their shared secret jokes, their storytelling eyes back and forth. You could feel almost a little self-conscious around them, like you're intruding on something intimate, sacred, vulnerable, a marriage.

But they are happy to show how they love one another, and we are happy to have this opportunity to learn.

Now, usually, people like me who stand here and pronounce marriages are supposed to talk about the five kinds of loves and did you know the Greeks had five different words for love and here they are number one... and so on down the list. What if it's more like, we have one word we're trying to take five different ideas to mean? What if we're the ones with poor ideas about this one word, and we maybe don't know too well what love is?

Wouldn't that be funny?

I tend to think maybe there's just a simpler way of thinking about it. Love is the same one thing, but done three different ways.

The first love is a basic love, an irresistible love for what a thing, a person, a cause, an idea does to us. We want that thing, that other person, that goal, because we want it to make us feel good. We love chocolate. We love fairy tales. We love our crush. We love dreaming "what if?", so we work to grab some thing and hold it close to us, to make real these feelings we're yearning for. But the problem is, what do you really live for once you have it? Once the desire fades, and there's no more grabbing and grasping for, what then?

The next love is true love, an unerring love for the thing, the person, the cause, the idea itself. We want to be better so we can serve the other better. We want them to feel good, we want to make them feel better. We love serving chocolate to them. We love sharing fairy tales with them. Whatever they dream, we want to make that reality. We want what they want. But the problem is, what do we really live for once they fail us, when they aren't right? Worse, what do you do when they don't love you back, or love you at all, and only use you for practice, what then?

I wonder these things. I thought to myself, there has to be some answer.

Look, it is right to enjoy. Over here, it is right to serve. When are we enjoying serving?

Phil and Kayla, so full of love, they are a living answer:

The third love is when true love is reciprocated, and the lovers unending want the other's happiness, when sharing love is the fairy tale. This last love is making love.

One of my favorite spiritual authors in one of her gospels from outer space talked about it this way: "Love doesn't just sit there, like a stone, it has to be made, like bread; remade all the time, made new." When true love complements true love, they cannot resist each other. Like bread, they knead each other. This is a high love, who can understand?

I have to be honest with you. Not everyone finds this. Rare treasure isn't found just any old day, rare gifts aren't handed over just any old way. But when one treasure finds the other, when one giver hands itself over in love to the other, both lovers one the other, the lovers make the love out of themselves. They make one another happiest to be in on this, this shared intimate public secret, we only see it from outside, outside the intimacy they are making from differences.

The differences between the lovers, the little ones, the big: they are like a musical harmony for the lovers. Lovers are in sync. Being in sync doesn't mean being exactly the same, exactly indifferent, exactly perfection. Sync means harmony, differences working together, togetherness out of individuals, serving up, loving up, loving deep, loving exploring working growing learning gathering, together.

When I am around Phil and Kayla, that's what I see. That's what inspires me. Does it you?

I hope so. Let's honor that gift they share with us, and let's hear them exchange vows, vows they have chosen themselves for each other.


To remember these vows, it's good to wear close and intimately a memento. Phil and Kayla have chosen rings, and they exchange these rings to remember who holds their vow just as close to them.

(?) Phil, do you accept this ring as a reminder of your vows to Kayla and hers to you?
Kayla, do you accept this ring as a reminder of your vows to Phil and his to you?

Well, then!

My fellow voyeurs, let us welcome and celebrate Phil and Kayla Johnson, wife and husband, lovemakers!

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Is this wise?
Is this yours?
Is this love?

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