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Give Thanks

女儿婚礼晚宴上的短讲

按照这里的习俗,女儿结婚本应女方操办主持。因着我们离他们太远,根本不可能操作。唯一能做的就是在SKYPE上和未来的亲家做过几次谈话和商讨。我们也把心中的想法讲给他们。感谢神,我的亲家在主裡看到这一切,包揽了所有需要准备的事情,他们动用了所有的亲戚朋友和教会的弟兄姐妹们,完成了有四百人参加的婚礼。在婚礼的晚宴上,新郎新娘双方父母被邀在大家面前有一个短讲。我和太太在到达那里的时候,才被告知这件事。于是我们一起祷告神,求神给我们当讲的话语。于是,同负一轭的意念就出现在太太的脑子里。于是我们在经过熬半宿夜,挤出来的内容,权做对他们的鼓励。经过两个小的润色,成为了下面这样。我们知道一切都在神里面,一切都是恩典,我们只有向神献上感恩。

Thank you all for being here to share this special day for Con and Dan. For those of you who don’t know us, I’m Con’s dad, E, and this is my beautiful wife, P. We’re honored to be here and give a speech to congratulate the two wonderful young people as they begin their lives together.

I would like here to compare Daniel and Con to an ox and a cow. Actually this metaphor is not from me, but from the Bible. It is said in Proverbs 14:4, “Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean” (ESV). Probably everyone who have ever had parenting experiences all hope for a chaos-free household. But the second half of this verse continues, “abundant crops come by the strength of the ox.” In the process of raising children, we have actually gained abundant “crops.” That does not refer to material prosperity, but to the happiness and sorrows our children have brought into our lives, through which God molds us into the likeness of Jesus. Therefore, here I would like to thank Con and her sister Jes, and brother Jer. As we’ve watched they grow up, we’re continually so proud of each of them. Con was a curious, stubborn and smart kid, who always scraped her knee from running too fast with the other kids. She always liked reading, back scratches and the beach, and she was always there for her siblings even when she was away studying in university and working in Calgary. Time moved way too quickly and she’s grown up into a beautiful young woman. Compared to other kids while growing up, Con and her siblings didn’t make our “manger” too messy. Moreover, for mom and me, they indeed brought many “crops” to our lives.

Actually we started to pray for Con’s future husband when she was thirteen years old. And we had been waiting for GOD’s time and arrangement. We first met Dan over Skype about 3 months into Con and Dan’s relationship, but by this point, we were already very impressed by everything Con has mentioned about Dan. When Con talked about the way Dan loved God and people, he had our approval before we even talked to him. Last July when Dan had chance to join chess tournament in Aurora, Ontario, Dan stayed with us for almost 10 days, and then for a few weeks last Christmas in Florida, and we were so happy to watch their relationship grow so beautifully.

In Matt 19:6 and Mark 10:9 our Lord Jesus said God “joined” two persons together. We are sure that Dan and Con could walk together into relationship and finally into marriage, which absolutely is GOD’s work. I still remember when Con finished her university and she got two job offers, one from Federal Service Canada in Barrie and one from the University of Calgary, but she surely chose Calgary. Now we understand why. We thank GOD that her decision is God’s arrangement and His ways are above ours.

Congratulations, Dan and Con, as you two become united as husband and wife. You two are like an ox and a cow from two different families. Today, not only are you to become united, but also to become “yoked together. The yoke upon you two is the yoke of our Lord Jesus, given with the purpose to learn from Him. He promised us, “my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matt 11:29~30). Don’t forget to turn to Him whenever you feel the yoke is too tight and the burden is too heavy.

I am sure that Dan is going to be a wonderful husband and Con is going to be a great wife because we trust GOD make the union as they walk together in GOD. Dan and Con, as you know always, we love you two so much, and we’re so excited for you two as you make this commitment from tomorrow! We hope to see you do things together to love God and love people that you couldn’t do alone. Finally, in God’s time, a few calves will be added to you, so that you may have a taste of a messy “manger,” and also gain abundant crops in your lives. May God bless the couple, hold you tight in His grip, and lead you to walk in His way all the days of your lives.

All the glory and grace come to our GOD!

Thank you so much.!

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