This past week I had the honor of officiating a cousin’s wedding. At the rehearsal, I found myself getting nervous. The family never saw me perform a wedding, and the pressure to deliver well screamed wildly in my mind. Throughout my eleven-year tenure as a pastor, I cannot remember the many services I officiated. This one was different.
Maybe the small voice inside me wanted to show my sister, aunts, uncles, cousins, and anyone else belonging to my family, that I knew how to do a great job. I am not the little kid anymore that terrorized everybody. This event is me doing what I do well. The best I had to give was on display, and I hoped that it proved good enough.
For me, I find it very tough to share my faith authentically with my extended family. They know where all of my skeletons lie buried, so the message better be authentic and ring true. Casual acquaintances are one thing, but people who know you are another story. Truth must prevail, and faith must not possess any hint of insincerity.
Everything went well. I loved spending time with those who remind me of my mother and still miss her. We shared great memories and a few not so great memories, laughing and crying (sometimes all at once). They also told me how proud they were of me and the things I achieved.
I accepted their compliments with a full heart. I gathered with people who witnessed my first steps, my first words, my first laughter. These fantastic people all gathered at a table on a hot Texas evening. I know that my mother smiled from heaven, seeing us together, celebrating another milestone.