It was a blistering day. Her husband wheeled her into her rightful position as mother of the groom. The hard providence of illness had made walking, communicating, and doing most things incredibly difficult. Yet even after years of suffering, she was there with a pretty dress and hat and curled hair. She waited.
After her husband sat next to her, the only son she had borne and raised walked into the scene with his soon to be mother-in-law on his arm. That son shone brightly in his wedding attire. The woman on his arm all joy. They walked to the seat designated for the mother of the bride. As they turned and looked at each other, they exchanged a few words, bright smiles, and a huge hug. It was a pretty moment.
Then, that son, that only son, turned away from his bride's mother and walked to his spot to await his bride.
I gasped. Did no one else find that odd, strange, and even awful? Did no one else feel the shock of a young groom sharing an intimate moment with his bride's mother but not his own? Had he forgotten in the press of people and wedding jitters? How could he forget to lean over and kiss his own mother? Had he forgotten the vibrant, full of life woman she used to be? Could he ignore this woman who had planned for him, prayed for him, given her life for him? Had he expressed his love in private to her so that he wouldn't break down in public? I don't know. I still don't know. But it was shocking that he did not give honor to the woman who loved him, bore him, nurtured him through childhood. To give honor in that one moment before he went into his future. To give honor to his bride's mother and not his own.
I don't know what the reasons for the actions, but I do know what the ramifications were. His mother sobbed....on and off through the ceremony. Contained in her wheelchair, unable to move, she sobbed and I knew her heartbreak.
And this speaks to me of a much larger problem in the world. We have forgotten how important it is to give honor to those God commands. We breeze into worship and treat Jesus as if he were just a common person and does not deserve the honor due his name. We try to equalize everyone and don't show honor to those elders and rulers God has given. Men don't give honor unto their wives but treat them with contempt and ridicule. Children aren't taught to honor the elderly, the sick and infirm, the wiser and older, the younger and weaker. Giving honor recognizes the labors, the risks, and sacrifices that others do for us. Giving honor demonstrates humility, courtesy and consideration of others more than ourselves. Giving honor reveals a thankful heart. It shows a heart of wisdom that realizes one day, we may be in the exact same position as the one we give honor unto. Let us consider carefully what it means to give honor to others.
"God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it." 1 Corinthians 12:24-26