Friday, January 23, 2015

4 Things Brides-To-Be Have All Wrong

Going through this whole wedding planning experience last year opened my eyes to a lot. 
I don't have time to unveil all that it did, maybe I'll write a book someday, but for now, if you're about to be married, (male or female, bride or groom) give this a read. 
I was talking with one of my best friends the other day, and we talked about how so many brides these days are focused more on the wedding, and less on the marriage. 
With some frustration, evaluation, and some simple problem solving, this post was born!
Let me show you 5 things you should reevaluate during your wedding planning season. 

1. Be a gracious bride, not an outrageous bride. 

This is just a friendly reminder that even though you can have your opinions that you are entitled to,
be gracious every time a vendor or someone you just met tells you what they think is best. 
For example. 
Everyone, and I mean everyone, wanted Ken and I to do a first look. 
Ken and I both really wanted the "first look" to be when the doors swung open and I walked down the isle. 
For over a year of planning I heard from everyone why I should do a first look: for the pictures, for the timing, for the flow, etc. 
Instead of snapping at them and yelling save it, like I wanted to, I tried to remain gracious. 
It's okay. They are just trying to help. 
Be gracious. 
Don't flip out. 
(ps. shout out to my videographers and amazing photographers for running around like crazy in order to make this happen)

On the other side of that, I would say don't let your expectations be so outrageous that you expect everyone to follow suit. 
You don't know everything about planning a wedding, these vendors have done probably hundreds if not thousands of weddings. 
Don't be outrageous in your demands. 

Cue my second point!

2. It's not all about little miss Y-O-U

Okay, I get it, to a point, the wedding is all about the bride. 
Your maid of honor/mom/cousin shouldn't be planning your wedding while living vicariously through you. You have the say so on what you like, what you want to wear, what you want other people to wear, etc. I get that. 
However, I think this gets taken out of hand by way too many brides.
Brides get into this mentality that it is all about them, and if they want their parents to buy them three different wedding dresses to find the perfect one, then gosh darn-it they better! 
I'll be honest, my dad never gave me a number or a budget to stick to for my wedding. He just didn't. He was so gracious and sacrificial when it came to me planning my wedding. I can't thank Him enough for it. 
But I never once tried to take advantage of that. 
I'm not trying to pat myself on the back, but I'm saying that there comes a point, that you don't take advantage of what people give you.
Just because your parents, grandparents, or whoever pays for your wedding is loving enough to pay for things you really want or "just have to have", doesn't mean you take advantage.

I tried to cut costs wherever I could. I skipped on some things I thought (at the time) were really important to me, and I still had my dream wedding. 
Get over your unrealistic fantasies... which (maybe not so graciously) leads me to my third point.

3. Get rid of your Pinterest fantasies

If I see one more picture of a big celebrity ring pinned on Pinterest I think I'll freak out. 
Would you stop?
Could you stop putting unrealistic expectations on a man for what he is supposed to propose with?
Don't get me wrong, I love my ring. I do. 
All I'm saying is that dreaming up elaborate million dollar weddings isn't the way to go. 
It'll leave you focused on the wrong thing...things! 
All that to say...

4. Stop prepping so much for the wedding, and start prepping for your marriage 

As some of you know, Ken and I got engaged October 4, 2013
I honestly felt like something was wrong with me because as the wedding drew closer (and I'm talking 5-6 months before the big day), I was less excited about the wedding day, and more excited for living with Ken, always (minus his away game series he would frequently go out of town for) having him to wake up to every morning, being a housewife, having someone love me knowing all my imperfections and character flaws, and everything else to do with marriage. 

Was I missing something?

I mean, I'm in NO way saying I wasn't excited for my wedding, but I remember something inside of me cringed a little when girls and women would ONLY ask if I was so excited for the wedding. 
I mean, sure, I loved (and still totally do) when people would talk about wedding flowers, bridesmaid dresses, the wedding cake, the wedding venue, my wedding dress, my wedding hair, our wedding vows, our wedding DJ, our wedding theme, our wedding colors, our wedding wedding wedding wedding! 
I have to be 100 percent honest and tell you (especially girls) that your wedding is NOT the thing you should be most excited about. 
It just isn't. 
Let me explain. 

I went to a wedding one time, and leading up to it, all the bride did was talk about her wedding. 
I asked her if she was excited to be married, and she answered with how amazing her flowers were going to look and how beautiful the venue was that she just booked. 
Something inside me cringed. 

Bride. Groom.
Listen to me. 
I'm not saying you have to be okay with going to the courthouse and saying I Do there... all I'm saying is that if you are spending ALL of your time prepping for this wedding, and NONE of your time studying and researching and letting God work on you to prepare you to be a wife or husband, I would re-examine everything. 
In pre-marital counseling (which I advise to EVERYONE), if you aren't being honest, open, and vulnerable, but only giving the "right" answers, please, PLEASE re-evaluate the reason for getting married. 
It breaks my heart to see the pressure men AND women feel to get married these days. 
Stop it. 
Marriage is a great thing, but if it's not right, or not God's timing for you... it's okay to call things off or wait. I promise you.


I'll go one step further and just ask you this--

What will your attendees leave with?
(and I'm not talking party favors)
I'm talking about the lasting imprint you want to leave on every person who attends your wedding.
For me personally, I didn't want all the focus on me. 
Well, I did, but, I didn't want it for the reasons you may think. 
I knew that it was the one time that I had all of my family and close friends' attention at one time, and I wanted to make sure that by the time they left that place, they knew that they were loved, deeply cared for, and honored.

I still had MY dream wedding, while making it all about someone else, and I'm not talking about how I wanted to impress my attendees, my groom, or my parents. 

I had my flowers and dress and bridesmaids with their hot little gold dresses and dark wine lipstick *insert heart eye emoji*, but what I was most excited for out of the whole shebang, wasn't any of those things. 

What I wanted more than anything, was to make it all about Jesus, and to make His name known. 
Ken and I literally prayed every night leading up to the wedding that our wedding would be all about Him, and that people would see the gospel that day either for the first time, or in a way that they've never experienced. 

One of the moments I will absolutely never forget (besides the very vivid memory of our vows being exchanged) and will always be the most grateful for, was when my dad gave his toast, and the first thing he did was give an invitation to know and follow Jesus. 
With tears in my eyes, I couldn't help but feel the close, intimate presence of God in that big ballroom. 

If people didn't remember my dress, my hair, my flowers, my shoes, my earrings, my nails, my makeup, my tan, or the details of "my" wedding... I didn't care. 
All I cared about is that people had the opportunity to see Jesus that day. 
To experience what His love has the power to do. 
To know that without Jesus, Ken and I wouldn't be able to make the vows we did. 
Without Jesus, Ken and I wouldn't have even been brought together.
Without Jesus, Ken and I wouldn't have lasted longer than the honeymoon stage of long distance dating. 
I wanted people to look at Ken and I on that day, and be pointed to only one thing-
Jesus. The gospel. 

1 comment:

  1. I have never thought all this! You are absolutely right dear. Thanks for these adorable tips. Well, my sister got engaged last week at a stunning New York city party venue. And now I’ll suggest her to read this post before starting planning for her wedding ceremony.