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How the coronavirus ruined my wedding

James Mildred

Marriage 28p129 f

Everything was going so well. We’d sorted out the venue, the caterers, the photographer and we’d booked the church for the service. We’d emailed invites to everyone (saving on paper costs and saving the planet – very 21stCentury) and our wedding day was beginning to take shape. My fiancé had got a dress and I’d bought a nice new suit. June 6, 2020 was going to be our wedding day. After nearly two years of dating, we wanted to commit to one another in front of God, friends and family.

Then the coronavirus happened. Stories has been circulating since before Christmas, but it was only when the first cases landed in the UK that it began to be apparent that life in the UK was going to change. Suddenly, even just hanging out together felt wrong and this made life very difficult. Then there were flatmates to think about, what would they say? What if they felt uncomfortable? We began to realise that lockdown was coming, and we wouldn’t even be able to meet up.

At first, I think our June wedding still seemed possible. Certainly, we thought, we may just have to accept a reduced number of guests. But then, as the lockdown began it became apparent that there was going to be no June wedding. So, we couldn’t see each other and now, our planned wedding day was not going to happen. Simply put, it sucked. Some outside force had upended our plans and life was turned upside down.

Okay, so we’ve been pretty fortunate in many ways. We emailed guests, re-booked the venues, caterers and the photographer. Only the honeymoon has proved a real hassle. But even on that, there’s been some progress. Ultimately, it’s not been too bad. But it’s still been really hard accepting that our planned day is not happening. Even the September wedding day will be different from what we’d originally envisioned.

Yet we’re still determined to get married. We’ll have to wait an extra four months, with all the challenges that brings. But marriage is right. God designed it and we’re thrilled, excited and above all determined to press ahead. Marriage is unlike any other relationship. It is the gold standard of commitment and when we say our vows, we’re doing it before God and promising to be loyal, faithful and true.

It’s been six weeks since I last saw my fiancé. Which is the hardest part of lockdown life. How much longer this will go on for, I’m not sure. At the national press conferences, the advice was that partners who don’t live together should just move in. But as Christians, we don’t think that’s an option for us. Marriage is such a special commitment, that we’re saving the truest intimacy until we’re married. As such, we’re choosing to remain apart until we’ve said those vows.

Our forever conversation got frustrated by the coronavirus. But we trust in a God who is too wise to be mistaken and too good to be unkind. His ways are not our ways and He is ever faithful and ever true. I don’t know why this has all happened. But I trust Him. He is generous, kind, and good. His mercies are new every morning and, in the pain, and frustration of the last few weeks, I’ve experienced His abundant goodness day by day.

I hope I can get married on 12 September. I hope family and friends can come. Marriage is such a beautiful thing. Until we can get married, we’ll wait and trust God. And whenever the lockdown is fully lifted, it’ll be one amazing party, of that I’m sure!

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