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This Side of the Dress

She slips her hands into the pockets with a grin. “I wish I could wear it around for a while. I love it!” In a flash, I’m transported back.

… to the moment I  thought the same thing about my own dress.

… to the time  she was three, and the dress test included a twirl to see if it would flow around her. If it did, then it was worthy of purchase. “Look mom, it has possets,” she would exclaim.

… to the time they crowned her queen and it was raining cats and dogs. She never complained of a soggy dress or fallen curls.

Tears well as I glance her way. She’s all beauty standing there in her twirling white dress with pockets, and I am a puddling mess.

Who knew she’d be putting the dress on for her last fitting in the exact same place I did twenty something years ago. There was no way of knowing then, we would come full circle.

What can I say? What words of wisdom come from decades of being on this side of the dress? I could tell her of the joy and pain. I might encourage her to grab the good and never hold onto the bad. But there are marriage books full of good advice for the days ahead, and I’m not sure you get it until you get there. No, I’ll not pour out marriage wisdom.

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This side of the dress leaves me anxious to tell her to cling closely to every moment. All her preparation and planning is for such a time as this. Soak up the love of others, the look on his face when he first sees you, the joy of the celebration. Because it’s only a glimpse of an eternal picture. A snapshot of what God has planned when the Bridegroom returns for His bride.

Yes, there is a dress only to be worn once in this lifetime, but there is another we will wear forever. And it takes a lifetime to prepare. Transformation comes little by little like moments build a decade.

This side of the dress I have two words… Don’t forget. 

Don’t forget the love you feel this day, or that the man standing at the end of the aisle is an answer to your momma’s prayers.

Don’t forget who God created you to be, and all the counsel you’ll ever need in is His book.

Never forget all life is wedding planning, and you’ll be a bride again one day.

Sweet girl, from this side of the dress… don’t forget.

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