January 19, 2022
“Honor your marriage and it’s vows and be pure.” Hebrews 13:4 TLB
Sunday, January 16 was the first time Rod and I walked into Wananalua Congregational Church in Hana, Maui since 2006. Kahu (Pastor) Peter welcomed us and asked where we were from. I introduced Rod, and then told him that I’d served there as kahu from 2003-2006.
He said that there was a family visiting from California. The parents explained that they’d been married at Wananalua Congregational Church 18 years earlier by a woman pastor. He wondered if that might have been me, and introduced me to them. They recognized me immediately and I recalled them!
They said that this was their first time back to Hawaii, and they made the 6-hour round trip drive to Hana that morning to show their daughters the church where they were married.
During my time in Hana, I officiated at dozens of weddings, mostly for tourists who chose Hana as their destination wedding location. Officiating weddings was one of my responsibilities. I accepted on the condition that I could met the couple prior to the service and could include a Bible reading, prayer and a brief homily in the service. It seemed like a way to witness to the couples and their wedding party. I never knew how those marriages worked out.
They shared a couple memories from their wedding day. They recalled meeting me before the service to make sure they had their marriage license. They recalled the homily, and said that over the years they came to understand more and more the importance what I had said about the work of marriage. Go figure!
I imagine that when we get to heaven we will be surprised by the people we see whose lives we impacted, and whose lives have impacted us. They will be a part of “such a great cloud of witnesses.” (Hebrews 12:1). Tears ran down my cheeks to receive a tiny taste of the joy of that heaven will be.
Thanks be our It Just So Happens God! ~ Anne