Summary: To build a home needs the model of love revealed in Christ.
MARRIAGE CEREMONY SERMON: WHAT IT MEANS TO BUILD A HOME.
John 15:9-15 (NIV)
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy will be in you and that your joy may be complete 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servants does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything I learned from my Father I have made known to you.
David and Edlyn, let me share with a few words on this great day of your wedding ceremony, what it means to build a home as we reflect from God’s Word. I heard this story… Some people ask the secret of our long marriage, says the couple who just celebrated their 50th anniversary. We take time to go out to a restaurant 2 times week. A little candlelight dinner, soft music, and a slow walk home. She goes Tuesdays, I go Fridays.
It’s quite a thing to build a marriage. It’s no easy task. You can build a house, you can even build a garage but it is not easy to build a home. There was a young businesswoman who was approached by a real estate agent, who wanted to sell her a home. “A home?” she said. “Why do I need one? I was born in a hospital, educated in a boarding school, courted in a car and married in a yacht club. My husband and I work in downtown office buildings. On weekends we are at some resorts playing golf or at our club. And if we do have time, we go to the movies, maybe catch a Red Sox game at Fenway Park. And when I die, I’m going to be buried from a funeral parlor. I don’t need a home. All I need is a garage.”
Yes, you can buy all sorts of things - You can buy a house, or a garage but there is one thing u cannot buy. You cannot buy a home. A home is something that exists apart from the physical arrangements of this world. It is a state of being, felt at the core of our humanity. All the money and fame in the world could not buy a home for Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Kurt Cobain, Princess Di, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. Many like them tried to make a home BUT they did not find a home. So many become free-agents in marketplace of life looking for home. All across Vancouver, there are many houses, some millions of dollars, but very few are homes. For you see, a home is more than just a postal code or like the Americans would say a zip code. A home is all about the quality of life, i.e. it’s about how u live, it’s about remaining in love as you build one life together out of two. I believe with all your heart today, that is what u seek, as you publicly declare your love for each other here today.
In our text today Jesus speaks of HOME. I like that phrase “remain in Him” which is also translated from the Greek “abide in Him”, to abide or remain in Him is to be at home with God. From the word abide we get the word abode which is another way of saying home. What this text invites is a coming home. For it is from being at home with God, Jesus says you’ll find a joy that is deep and complete, absolutely satisfying, when you find your heart’s true home in the abiding friendship of God. This is where joy is spelt out with capital letters and the intimacy. BUT as one practitioner of prayer puts it:
“Today the heart of God is an open wound of love, He aches over our distance and preoccupation. He mourns that we do not draw near to him. He grieves that we have forgotten him. He weeps over our obsession with muchness and manyness. He longs for our presence. And He is inviting you and me to come home, to come to where we belong, to come home to that for which we were created…He invites us into the living room of his heart where we can put on old slippers and share freely. He invites us into the kitchen of his friendship where chatter and batter mix in good fun. He invites us into the dining room of his strength, we where can feast to our heart’s delight… He invites us into the bedroom of his rest where new peace is found, where we can be naked and vulnerable and free. It is also the place of deepest intimacy, where we know and are known to the fullest ” (Richard Foster in Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home).