Commitment-Phobe: Blessing a marriage
I volunteered to bless a marriage. How do I do it?
I went to a good friend’s wedding a few weeks back. He was marrying the love of his life, a man from Wales. It was the wedding party of the century and I had a great time. It was also my first wedding as a Christian. The ceremony was officiated by a humanist. There was an ancient handfasting ritual, some Cole Porter songs were sung, and a prayer of blessing was led by a Christian. I was the Christian leading the prayer.
When the couple met a few years back, I had just come to faith. I met my friend for coffee and, as we talked about his hopes and dreams, I found myself, spontaneously, stopping in the middle of the street to pray for him and the future of this relationship. I had never prayed for anyone aloud, or on the street, before, especially for a friend who I presumed was not Christian. I prayed that he would be loved by someone with as large a heart as him, I prayed that he had met the person he could share his life with. I forgot to be embarrassed by this public show of faith. But my friend, who was brought up in a strict Catholic culture and who had been initially rejected by his mother when he had revealed his sexuality, appreciated the prayer. I prayed God’s love into him and he received it with joy. Within a short span of time, the couple were in love, living together. I couldn’t help but feel my prayer had been answered. When the UK marriage laws changed and the couple became engaged, I knew that I wanted to bless this marriage and told them so straight away.
After asking to bless them, I suddenly realised I didn’t know how, or if I was even allowed to. But I felt convinced God was with me on this one, so I just needed to find out what to do. …
This is an extract from an article that was published in the November 2017 edition of Reform