Saturday, November 15, 2008

unity cermonies (part two) In addition to the sand ceremony, we also choose to do a "cord of three strands ceremony" too. I have no idea how I found this, but I do know I found it while surfing for ceremony ideas, and that I ended up here, which is a site that explains the idea and sells the cords. This was probably the last thing we added to the ceremony. Lawrance loved the idea. It was also something that we could easily do in both the American and Taiwanese ceremony, and something we could frame and keep for a long time. I braided the three cords while Lawrance held them, and then he tied the end of the braid together with a small wire when I was done braiding. Here is what we put in the program to explain the symbolization of this unity ceremony: Ecclesiastes 4:12 illustrates the importance of Christian companionship. Two Christians that are bound together in Christ are stronger than the individuals themselves. We believe that Christian marriage is about more than the union of one man and one woman. The Bible teaches us that God performs a miracle in our marriage, uniting us together in a covenant relationship with Him as one. The Cord of Three Strands is a symbol of that sacred union created today. The gold strand symbolizes that we have invited our Lord Jesus Christ to the position of authority in our marriage relationship. The purple strand represents the groom. It illustrates the majesty of God as head over the husband. As Lawrance submits himself to the Lord, the Lord in turn will hold the marriage together through him. The white strand represents the bride. It illustrates the purity of the bride of Christ. As we receive Jesus Christ as our personal Savior and Lord, we are cleansed through Christ. (Some of this wording came from the site where we got the cords.) Here is also what my dad said before we started to tie the cords: Lawrance and Amanda have also chosen to braid three strands together into a single cord. A "threefold cord" is a symbol of union. Where two are closely joined in love and fellowship, Christ will, by his Spirit, come to them, creating a threefold cord. In braiding these three strands together, Lawrance and Amanda are demonstrating that their marriage is more than a joining of two lives together. It is a unity with God as well. They are choosing to allow God to be at the center of their marriage, woven into every aspect of it. As I started braiding the cord, Lawrance told me I was going too fast and needed to slow down. So, I slowed down a lot just to tease him. Well, apparently to some of our guests the exaggerated movements I made as I slowed down seemed to them that I was flirting with my groom during the ceremony. That wasn't the case . . . but we both did laugh at my silliness...
so kiss me After my dad blessed our new marriage with payer, he then told Lawrance some words he'd been waiting a LONG time to hear: Can you tell how excited we are? Finally, he hears . . . "Lawrance, you may now kiss your wife." And so . . . we had our first kiss, as husband and wife. I have no idea how long it lasted . . . all I know is that he started kissing me before I had a chance to "pucker up." So, the entire time we are "kissing" I'm actually "smiling." So, when he finally releases me from our first kiss, I can't help but laugh . . . from excitement, joy, and from not actually being able to kiss back and just the blissful awkwardness of it all. :) We are so grateful for God's grace in enabling us to be able to share our first kiss as man and wife. You should see the looks on people's faces--especially nonbelievers--when I tell them our first kiss was on our wedding day. They can't believe it. Sometimes, ironically, it seems like if in that instant they lose all respect for me, thinking I must be insane. We dated nearly two months before he held my hand because he knew that once we started touching we would just want more and more. So he waited. After we were engaged is when the physical intimacy beyond hand holding started. The day he asked me to marry him is also the first day we hugged--a very awkward side hug at that. The first time he kissed me on the cheek was a few weeks later during our engagement photo session (right there in that photo to the left). Anyway, point is even with caution and even with taking it very slow, after getting engaged the physical intimacy began to heat up rather quickly, especially the month we were in America together. We are both so glad that we had that line of no mouth to mouth kissing because in so many ways it helped us stay pure--even when we wanted more. There were a couple of times the month before the wedding where I was like, "ahh just go ahead and kiss me . . . there is nothing wrong with kissing before our wedding day." But, he wouldn't. He had promised me our first kiss would be on our wedding day, and so he kept his promise. What a blessing!! In all it's awkwardness it was totally worth waiting for . . . and a moment I will never, ever forget. {Oh yeah, and by the way, I think kissing this guy has now become one of my favorite pass-times. ;)}

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