Life Is Filled With Happiness And Sadness

Last night, I did a wedding ceremony in Atlanta. Every wedding is different but, this one, was even different from most weddings that are different. A wedding is a time of joy… happiness… celebration. But this wedding began with a note of sorrow.
Richard Chard from Fort Myers, Florida was marrying Phyllis Schofield. Earlier on Saturday, Richard’s ninety-seven year old mother, Mildred Chard, had passed away. She had been ill for the past week but she passed on Saturday morning. But, she had told her son, Richard and his fiance’ Phyllis, that she wanted them to go ahead with the ceremony even if she had been unable to attend.
Saturday morning, I was notified of the death and I was asked for advice. I was asked if I could do somewhat of a memorial for Mrs. Chard at the beginning of the wedding. I told them I could.
So, at seven pm, a small group of people gathered in a room at The Ritz in Atlanta. The granddaughter of the bride sang a song. Then, the bride was ushered down the aisle by her son. I did the welcome to the wedding and then, asked everyone to be seated.
I spent a few minutes talking about what had happened that day and did a brief memorial message. I quoted Ecclesiastes 3:4 which says, “There is a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance”
Last night, for about thirty minutes, the Chard and Schofield family experienced both… they wept and then, they laughed.
I shared with the group that this was also an ending and a beginning.. for Mrs. Mildred Chard, it was the end of a ninety-seven year life. For Richard Chard and Phyllis Schofield, it was the beginning of their lives together.
I’m pretty sure that none of us want to weep today. We would much rather laugh. But, there are times, when we must mourn. Life is filled with happiness and sadness and the Lord is with us in both times.

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