Monday, August 31, 2009

It really was a great weekend. We got to go to Philly for M.'s cousin's wedding. It was my first "live" experience with an Indian wedding....and I really enjoyed myself.

I thought the reception was beautifully done. We went to help set up Friday night. Everyone there was Indian....except when the florists came. They were a white American family. When they were working I thought, "Huh. They really stand out don't they! So white." It just looked so interesting when everyone else was dark. And then I was like, oops, the joke's on me. I guess I stick out pretty good too....especially when I was the ONLY one of about 30 people eating at the rehersal dinner. ha ha!

It was a pretty traditional wedding....took about 2 hours for the actual ceremony. We got up at 5:30am on Saturday....and were all done around 4pm. Wow!
You can't tell from this picture very well, but the color was burnt orange and gold. Very pretty I thought (there was some disagreement on this among the cousins)

In the morning, the groom's family all comes over for a buffet style breakfast and then the priest comes to pray and bless the groom. Pictures are taken. Lots of people chatter in a language that I am just starting to speak like a baby. The groom's family gives all the ladies a gift of a saree. (That's a lot of sarees)
Astrology plays a big part in these ceremonies too I guess, and it was found out that it would be "bad" to be in the house between 9 and 10am. So, we had to be finished with everything and out of the house by 8:45am. A limo came to pick up the groomsmen and groom. We (M and I rode with the wedding co-ordinator/a cousin) took a quick side trip to the bride's house too, and saw the limo there. (they weren't ready quite yet though)
At the church we got roped into being ushers and co-ordinators. My job was to pin the corsages on. I did okay for about half of them, and then about reception time I noticed a lot of them were leaning or flipped upside-down! (We fixed those)
The ceremony was mostly in their language, with a little bit of english. Lots of prayers and congregational responses and blessings. The most important part is when the priest says something over the bride and groom's gold chains ("crowns") that they then exchange (like rings). Once on, they are officially "wed" (though the service isn't near over yet). They did also do rings. And then there is a part involving giving of a red and gold saree to the bride. And then more blessings and ordinances. Then they are pronounced man and wife and exit the stage to the back. (no PDA)

The guests then went to the reception hall and ate appetizers, while the family stayed to take pictures. Then the bride and groom go change (I can't believe I didn't take a picture of them after that)...the bride into her red saree and the groom into a gold traditional outfit.

Then we eat.

And a bunch of cousins and aunts and uncles did things like songs and dances and toasts during the recpetion. And the mother's came up and lit a big oil lamp with the couple. And then presented a pineapple to them, and they drank out some juice. Oh yes, they cut cake too, but just to give each other a piece, not for everyone. (But I'll tell you a secret....since we were at Auntie and Uncle's house, a cousin and I got to eat cake later....and it was good!)

Everyone had to hurry and be finished by 2 since there was another program coming. So at 2 we all headed over to Auntie & Uncle's house (at least all the realatives on both sides) and then there's more ceremony there. The bride and groom have to step over the threshold with their right foot. The bride accepts a lit oil lamp from the Mother-in-Law. Then everyone is served juice and tea and snacks. The couple has to drink some milk out of cups. Everyone visits and then the bride and groom head off to the bride's house to do a similar thing.

Then all the cousins and aunts started diviying up the leftovers and laughing and talking. The men went outside to sit. I just kind of puttered around....can't do a whole lot when you don't know what everyone is saying, and also we were very tired at this point.

Around 5 M's school advisor (who is also in Philly) came to pick us up with his family to take a quick tour of the city, so I don't know what happened after we left, but pretty much everyone finished up and went back to another cousin's house to do stuff together.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Let Him have His way...with me.

Would you live for Jesus, and be always pure and good? Would you walk with Him within the narrow road? Would you have Him bear your burden, carry all your load?

Let Him have His way with thee.


His pow’r can make you what you ought to be;

His blood can cleanse your heart and make you free;

His love can fill your soul, and you will see’Twas best for Him to have His way with thee.

Would you have Him make you free, and follow at His call? Would you know the peace that comes by giving all? Would you have Him save you, so that you can never fall?

Let Him have His way with thee.

Would you in His kingdom find a place of constant rest? Would you prove Him true in providential test? Would you in His service labor always at your best?

Let Him have His way with thee.

(song by Cyrus S. Nusbaum)

This is one of the verses I came across this morning,

"Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore stand in awe of God." Eccl. 5:7

Oh that I would learn this!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Searching for Significance.

I've been very thoughtful this weekend....letting my mind mull over many, many things. Recently, I've been surfing the internet for research on church outreach, working with people, and generation trends. I've also spent time looking up other people's blogs and reading about their weeks and ups and downs.

And I tell you what. My life seems pretty insignificant.

I know so many people that are going through tough times right now - serious health issues, family troubles, raising kids, big discions to make.

And here I am struggling to have the right attitude about making supper, or going to birthday parties, or serving in the church. It seems so petty. *sigh*

Sometimes I just want to say, "O grow up Emily." But at the same time, I don't want to. And that's where the struggle lies...and what has been occupying my thoughts alot. I want to live my life fully for God, to be useful in His hands, to be utterly dependent on Him and not worry about little things in life. Yet there is part of me that still holds back. There is a part of me that is still so childish and selfish and unrelenting. And sometimes I just can't seem to shake it.

And I don't know why I'm rambling on here....but I am. The only thing I've concluded in this stage of my life, is how, is that I stay founded on God's truth. It's okay to go through changes, and question myself and my motives, and ask myself hard questions and "what am I really doing?" But if I'm not grounded in God's promises, I will be so easily blown away.

And so, though it's been a while since I've practiced my memory verses, I realize it's really, really important right now. and I don't know what else to do, but I know I can do this.

"But the wisdom that comes from above is first of all pure, then peaceloving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere."
James 3:17
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
James 1:5

Friday, August 21, 2009

Good Cake

I brought a piece of cake with me to work today. It's good cake. It's calling my name from my desk drawer....but I was supposed to eat it for lunch. Is it lunch time at 10:30am?

I didn't make the cake. Last night we went to an International Student potluck (with some other friends too), and the cake was there. I had a piece for supper while laughing over jokes with good friends. I eyed the cake sitting on the dessert table while chatting with a new friend and exchanging email addresses. And then I asked to take some home when we were all finished and washing up the tables and watching the students leave, knowing the feeling of starting a new semester and the excitment it brings.

Though it was a rush getting things ready for the meal last night while still trying to work an 8 hour day, God saw me through. Thank goodness He controls time and I don't, because things would get really messy if I did!

Thank goodness He holds the times and seasons in His hands, and knows that even though it's the middle of August, I guess it's time for the apples to ripen and the yellow leaves to drop off the Silver Maple down our road.

Thank goodness, that even though I think I'm getting "so on top of things," that He is patient and will catch me when I fall down again.

Thank goodness that He gave me wonderful taste buds, so I can look forward to eating this Good Cake. :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Good Morning

Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed, for His compassions never

fail, they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22

Trust in the Lord, with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5,6

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.

Psalm 37:7


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