Tuesday, July 19, 2016

An Eternal Celebration

I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. John 5:15 

Once in a while you get a taste of heaven. A brief glimpse of the joy and  connection that comes from being in Christ. I had a small taste of it while celebrating the marriage of a dear friend.

Our family had the blessing and privilege of being a church host family for a college student from Nicaragua.  Bettina taught us about her life in Nicaragua and we had a chance to share our home with her during holidays and vacations when she wasn't able to go home.  After graduation she moved to Europe and settled in a small suburb of London. There she found a wonderful church that meets over a coffee shop. More importantly, she met her future husband Will.   As I got to meet Will and Bettina's dear friends from England and around the world- I was struck by the connection that we have in Christ. We truly are one body connected in Christ as a vine and its branches.

Will and Bettina's church served and gave sacrificially to host receptions, help with the decorations, sound system, music, food, signs, venue and even housing out of town guests like me.  I was able to witness the body of Christ working together using their gifts, abilities and resources to bless Will and Bettina and give glory to God for the great things he had done.

The worship music during the wedding ceremony was the most enthusiastic joy-filled praise I have ever experienced at a wedding. As I stood there singing together with their friends from Nicaragua, South Africa, India, England, France, Belgium and the United States, I got a glimpse of the joy and celebration that will occur when people from every language and nation worship God together for eternity using their gifts, lifting their voices and celebrating the one who gave it all that we might have life in abundance. 

Revelation 19:6-7
Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out,
For the Lord our God
    the Almighty reigns.
Let us rejoice and exult
    and give him the glory,
for the marriage of the Lamb has come,
and his Bride has made herself ready;

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