Another week, another wedding. I got to the church a little late and couldn’t find a parking spot. Cars were every where. I knew this probably meant the church was full and it might be hard for me to find a seat. I was right!
Valerie Antonuik, vice president of the Baptist Union, had been invited to lead the service. He did a great job of explaining the union between a man and woman.
After the ceremony, I was asked to go with the couple to take some pictures at a local park. It is a tradition with most Slavik couples to take pictures around the city at the different historical or scenic spots.
Sergei and Sveta decided to go to the new park the city is building near the football stadium. It is a beautiful spot, made the more beautiful with the colorful leaves from autumn. It was quite cold in the park since the wind was blowing pretty hard.
Afterwards, we went to Donetsk Christian University to attend the dinner the parents of the couple were hosting. The dining hall had been converted into a nice setting to host the dinner.
Usually, those in attendance are given the chance to say some words of blessings or encouragement to the new couple. I didn’t really want to stand in front of all those people and try to share my heart in a language not my own, so I waited until we had a break.
For the last few months God has been really speaking to my heart about love. Since this day had been all about the love that had grown between Sergei and Sveta, God brought to my heart 1 Corinthians 13:13 “So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
It has been apparent between these two young people that their faith is strong. Knowing Sergei longer, I have seen the hope and trust he had in the Father to provide the wife for him. And in the last few months I have seen their love grow stronger for each other.
So, when my time came to share with them, I shared this verse. The greatest of all things is love.
For me, it means that I must love God even more tomorrow than I do today. And because of this love, it will spur me to love my neighbors even more than I do today. I will be judged by the Father by how much I love. I must strive to fulfill these greatest commandments.