Let us be glad and rejoice, and let us give honor to him. For the time has come for the wedding feast of the Lamb, and his bride has prepared herself. She has been given the finest of pure white linen to wear.” For the fine linen represents the good deeds of God’s holy people. And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.” And he added, “These are true words that come from God.” Revelation 19:7-9
I want to start off by saying how madly, head-over-heels, incredibly in love God, our father, Abba, is with you. He loved you from your very first breath and will love you until your very last. He knew your heart before you were born and is on an endless mission to captivate you as much as you captivate Him. The God who created this Earth, who can move mountains, who can turn water into wine, who can wipe out the Earth in one word is lovesick over you. He loved you before you knew Him and will keep on loving you no matter how many times you mess up because that is just who He is.
Within our souls, we as humans cling to an undeniable craving for relationships. Couple that craving with the hunger of being fully known and fully loved and you will see that we were designed at our core with the Holy intention of being filled with Jesus. We have this natural desire in our hearts to feel loved. It was crafted by the Creator and put there for one purpose. This purpose is to turn that desire into a passionate pursuit of Jesus, our Bridegroom. Many times we disregard the title of Bridegroom when thinking of Him. In a way, this is beautiful because we are so undeserving of His love and sovereignty, yet it is also tragic because Jesus longs for us to prepare ourselves as brides for His triumphant return.
We are the bride of Jesus, and because we are the bride we must prepare.
I have been dreaming of my wedding day since I was a little girl (cliche, I know). I hope it will be a winter wedding with me wearing a long sleeve lace dress, TONS of flowers, bridesmaids in mix-matched pink dresses, and every friend and family member at the banquet table under the light of the stars eating a meal together in celebration of the new bride and groom. There is tons of preparation that goes into this day. Makeup and hair appointments, catering, picking out dresses and flowers and cakes! But, perhaps the most important of all preparations are taking all of the RSVPs of guests who wish to attend the wedding. You make an RSVP because you want the assurance that you will be expected at the wedding. You want the assurance that you won't be turned away. One of my favorite pieces of imagery from the Bible is that of the wedding feast. We will be at a long beautiful table with Jesus at the head. He will still be pursuing us even in our eternal state. We will not be there because we deserve it, but we will be there because Jesus called us. We had a seat reserved for us. We will be expected. We will undeservingly be sitting at that table, plugging our nose because of the wave of grace that God has drenched us with.
Until then we must be patient. Like a bride longing to see her beloved, we must patiently wait for our groom. There will be tears and hurt because of the separation, the unbelievable pain associated with the longing to see someone you love that cannot be fulfilled until the appointed hour. But as a groom sweetly wipes away his bride's tears at the alter so will Jesus. There will be no more crying, or morning, or pain because the separation is over, it has passed and you have been embraced by your creator. How comforting is it to be held by a God that holds an infinite capacity for love, one that is not swayed by sin, but is anchored in truth. Though we will not see it we will be surrounded by it, embraced by it. We will be surrounded and embraced by a love that is consuming us yet we will only understand it in the light of God's presence. We will not be able to achieve this love by ever being good enough because this love that God possesses is not circumstantial. But by coming to Him with the reservation under our name that cannot be thrown away or burned into ashes we will be able to sit at the wedding table. This ceaseless love is incomprehensible. We have achieved an unachievable love by being sinners saved by grace.
So let us prepare for Jesus' return. Like a bride clothes herself in a pure white gown to embrace her husband-to-be, we must clothe ourselves in the gowns of righteousness and love, the love that springs from a pure heart, a good conscience, and sincere faith. Each day there are gifts He gives away freely to us to prepare our hearts for our eternal stay in his presence. Let us embrace those wedding gifts as little tastes into what it will be like to be with our sweet Jesus forever.