Its true, today marks the 12th day of my newly married life. As many of you know, I spent the last 5 months engaged to Jennifer Miller, the most incredible girl I have ever known, and I can now say that she is my wife! Jennifer Miller Dixon!
We spent the last two weeks having the time of our lives on a cruise to the Bahamas and Virgin Islands, which I hope adequately explains my lack of blogging in recent days. Needless to say, it was by far the best vacation of my life. The Lord blessed Jennifer and I with some much needed time to connect and grow together. I intend to reignite my blogging passion in the weeks to come–though it will be tempered, as Kevin can relate, by a far greater passion for the woman that God has united me to in marriage!
The last two weeks have been a whirlwind of experiences and I want to share with you, that through the whole process of preparing for our wedding, getting married, and going on our honeymoon, I have been thoroughly struck afresh with a profound sense of God’s perfect, beautiful, unmerited grace. As I stood before all the amazing people that had encouraged, prayed for, and supported myself and Jennifer in preparation for marriage, I was literally speechless. The thought that kept reoccurring in my mind was “why has God blessed me so bountifully? I don’t deserve this kind of love and support from my friends and family, and more than that I certainly do not deserve to be loved so dearly by Jennifer.” That is grace, isn’t it? God giving us bountifully what we have not earned.
The last two weeks have been a beautiful picture of the gospel to me in many ways. I have seen God’s grace in the love that friends and family have shown to Jennifer and myself with their gifts and sacrifices on our behalf. The gospel was set on display quite powerfully in Jen and I’s wedding ceremony. I wept as I waited for Jennifer to walk down the isle while singing The Church’s One Foundation. I wept for two reasons. First the thought marrying Jennifer was overwhelming. Secondly, as I sang about Christ and the church, God’s purpose in creating marriage became abundantly clear as I sang,
She [the church] is His [Christ’s] new creation by water and the Word. From Heaven He came and sought her to be His holy bride, and with one love He bought her and for her life He died.
Of all the things that I do not deserve, the thing I do not deserve the most is God’s covenant love–his love that takes a filthy, rebellious, and selfish man like me and makes me anew with the water of His Word. I don’t deserve to be freed from the sin that I cherish and to be united anew to Christ my Lord, but that is exactly what God has done for me in Christ. That is what God does for all who put their trust in Christ alone for salvation. He makes us anew. He gave himself up for us, that we should be holy and blameless in His sight. He seals us with His blood. He gives us the greatest possible gift that He can give us on earth, “mystic sweet communion with God the three in One!” Through this communion, we also have the sure hope of the consummation of peace forevermore–united with Christ in heaven, reigning with him and enthralled with His glory for eternity.
This is why marriage exists–to display God’s glory in redeeming sinners like me. As I stood before Jennifer, my friends and family and God almighty and vowed to love Jennifer like Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, I was hit with the reality that my union with Jennifer is merely a small picture of the union for which I was created. I was created to know, worship, and adore God. I am convinced that God gave me Jennifer as a constant reminder until He returns or calls either of us home, that He has poured out His grace on me in Christ. That is why I exist–to display the glory of God in redemption. Pray for Jennifer and I, that we would display the glory of God in the face of Christ faithfully to the ends of the earth.