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Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Love

Five years ago in July, I sat in on my parents patio with them where they told me that 2007 was going to be "their" year. They did not want any weddings or babies that year, they wanted that year to be able to celebrate their 30 years together. I am sure that they thought I long since forgot about that talk but I didn't.

In retrospect I don't think I ever thought anything of it, none of us could ever imagined or comprehended what this year would be like for our family.

At the beginning of the year my parents were travelling: To Florida, to Panama, to California with lots more plans for the year.

In spring life came to a halting stop. With the news of my mom's cancer and her diagnosis came a different kind of bonding. The ups and downs that happen with cancer patients. Immediate chemo, losing one's hair, painful bouts and hospitalized stays.

The last time my mom was in the hospital just before they got sent home my dad got down on one knee and asked her to marry him all over again.

Without surprise my mom said yes. So quickly, in two weeks time, we put together a vow renewal ceremony, in their beautiful backyard, officiated by one of the minister's at church. We shopped for a gown, my mom and dad ordered a cake and we all prayed for good weather.

Good weather we got. We could not have ordered a better day. It was perfect in every single way. Considering there were no written invitations, seeing well over 100 people there was inspiring.

My older sister and I were asked to read the scriptures that had been read at their original wedding. My older sister stood up and read her scripture brilliantly and then I stood and began to read. And then, I began to weep.

When people ask about my mom, I do not cry. I keep myself together. I am matter-of-fact. Not because I am not sad but because I am, in that respect, a private person.

But Saturday, I read through tears the following scripture:

If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but
didn't love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had
the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God's secret plans and
possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains,
but didn't love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the
poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn't love
others, I would have gained nothing. Love is patient and kind. Love is not
jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not
irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about
injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never
loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Prophecy
and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But
love will last forever! Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even
the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! But when full
understanding comes, these partial things will become useless. When I was a
child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put
away childish things. Now we see things imperfectly as in a cloudy mirror, but
then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial
and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now
knows me completely. Three things will last forever-faith, hope, and love-and
the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13
Though I try to be composed and keep myself together, it is the reality that causes me to become overcome. I was reading such truths aloud at my parents vow renewal and while it was a happy day, the tears came especially easy.

I am sure there are many couples who renew their vows over the years but this was different. It was unique, it was special, it was holy.

My parents exchanged the exact vows they said so many years ago and as it was time for their rings my dad slipped a new ring on my mom's finger, representing the past, the present and the future.

You may assume that I am biased, but I believe my mom and dad are a couple to be admired. The love they share is evident in all they do, all they have done. They are the truest of true love I have ever witnessed and they set the standard for Jeff and I to live up to. They have witnessed and lived out the above scriptures, which is perhaps the reason that the ceremony struck me in such an overwhelming way.

It is in the way my mom loves my dad and respects his work and his funny side. She's his biggest fan, his partner in life and most precious confidante. It is in the way my dad looks at my mom and wants it all to be perfect for her. His concerns and convictions to make her life all that she deserves and more. It is in the way that he calls her his 'everything'.

Most day-of photos are unedited images courtesy of Nicole Olson Photography.
Music: Everything by Michael Buble'

8 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for all the compliments. Mom is my everything for sure. We love ya all.
Dadio

October 9, 2007 at 4:02 PM  
Blogger The Lindahl News said...

Okay. Now my eyes are wet, too.
Thanks for sharing this slide show.

All the best to these two lovebirds!

October 9, 2007 at 4:14 PM  
Blogger Alli said...

Your parents seem so sweet...so sweet.

October 9, 2007 at 5:26 PM  
Blogger Jed and Anne said...

Samara, this is the sweetest video of your parents wedding day this past weekend! My heart is just filled with the love that is so evident between the two of them. Thank you for sharing this, and please tell your parents congratulations from me!

October 9, 2007 at 8:08 PM  
Anonymous Liz M said...

What an amazing day for the whole family to experience! It's a blessing to see your parents renew your vows in an era where people give up so easily on marriage. I'll admit I fought tears as I watched the video knowing all your family has been through in the last six months. Keep rejoicing in moments like these!

October 9, 2007 at 10:34 PM  
Blogger Kjersten said...

This is perhaps the sweetest, most heartfelt event I have ever seen. Blessings to your amazing parents!

October 10, 2007 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger melissa said...

love and joy to you all.

October 10, 2007 at 9:36 AM  
Anonymous Jade said...

That was truly beautiful

October 13, 2007 at 2:58 PM  

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