7,884,000 minutes


How do you measure 15 years?  Months.  Days.  Hours.  Seasons.  Snowfalls.  Beach trips.  Tear drops.  Lessons learned.  All right answers.

How about this?  1 wedding, 4 apartments, 3 houses,  4 cities, 2 college degrees, 3 long years in seminary, 5 children, 5 OBGYNs, 4 full-time ministries, 3 cars, 1 minivan, thousands and thousands of miles driven, 1 incredible wife, and 1 husband blessed beyond degree.  Good start.

15 years ago today.  I woke early.  Had breakfast at the hotel.  Then golf with my father and brother.  Lunch with family and friends at Ruby Tuesday seemed innocent enough until one of Sonya’s bride’s maids informed us that she was there too!  Yes, we were all traditional with the not seeing the bride before the wedding thing.  Loved it.  Loved that Sonya got shoved under a table as we walked in.  It’s so much fun.  Months before we rejected a photographer because they wanted to take all the pics before the wedding.  Nope.  This is too much fun.

Then, taking all of our stuff for an early check-in at our hotel.  O.K.  This is were I messed up.  Several out-of-town friends from my Continental Singers days had come in for our wedding, including an old girl friend.  They were all with me when I picked up Sonya’s stuff.  I don’t think it would have had the effect it did if she hadn’t been trying to take a bath on her wedding day and run out of hot water.  I remember talking to her through the bathroom door.  But hey, just little bumps on an incredible day.

Before the wedding, the men all dressed in the Music Suite.  Why does the bride get a Bride’s Room and the groom get a choir room?  Aaa, who cares?  Suddenly, I remembered that I left our rings in the suitcase.  You know, the one I’d taken to the hotel.  So, last minute hope-I-don’t-get-pulled-over-for-speeding trip to the hotel to get the rings, in my tux.  No problem.  Made it back in plenty of time.

Then, right before the wedding, they informed me that our cake had not arrived yet and not a call from the baker.  “Should we tell Sonya?” they asked.  No.  Don’t add that stress.  Turned out to be a good answer.  The cake was there for the reception no added stress on the bride.

I remember when they opened the doors.  Down the aisle was a woman so beautiful.  So stunning.  Her dress was perfect.  Wow, she was gonna marry me.  Her dad married us.  My dad was best man.  Her sister was matron of honor.  Many of our family and friends played and sang.  It was perfect.

I look at these pictures and think, “Wow, we were just kids!”

That is still the best groom’s cake I’ve ever had.  Chocolate heaven.

Right after this picture of us running to the car, someone, probably a kid, pelted Sonya in the face with an unopened bag of birdseed.  One of the bags we’d stuffed two nights earlier.  Lesson learned: pretty lace + bird seed + unsupervised child = dangerous projectile.

Off we go.  Not a clue.  But blessed beyond measure.

15 years. 1 wedding, 4 apartments, 3 houses,  4 cities, 2 college degrees, 3 long years in seminary, 5 children, 5 OBGYNs, 4 full-time ministries, 3 cars, 1 minivan, thousands and thousands of miles driven, 1 incredible wife, and 1 husband blessed beyond degree.

The best part: I wouldn’t change a thing.

Thank you, Sonya.  You are my best friend, my inspiration (insert Chicago song here), my wife, my mate, my partner in parenting, and my partner in ministry.  You are awesome.  I love you more now than ever before.  I love you with all of my heart and I can’t wait to spoil our grandchildren together, then go for ride in our red convertible Corvette.  Just the two of us old people making the young ones jealous.

Thank you God.  You are so good to me.

Brian

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