29 ways to plan the ultimate Christian Wedding.

Wedding

This is a picture of a picture from my wedding. We didn’t take it with a camera phone because they didn’t exist at the time. Though it’s not throwback Thursday, I thought I would share both proof I used to have brown hair and a post I wrote about how to plan the ultimate Christian wedding.

I know a lot about weddings. I used to write advertising for a company that specialized in rental tuxedos. One of my jobs was to answer all the emails that people sent to a fictional girl called “Jenny.” So on any given day I was emailing wedding advice to anxious would be brides about everything from what color cummerbunds would match a bridesmaid’s dress to how to politely ask groomsmen to pay for their own tuxes.

The idea of me giving girls advice about color schemes and wedding dresses is absurd. I was horrible at that part of my job and I regret if you ever got some ridiculous email signed by “Jenny.” That was me. I thought chocolate was going to be the new black and coral was darker than salmon. My bad.

But despite my woeful color schemes, I do think I can help you plan the ultimate Christian wedding. I’ve been in a few, I’ve spoken at a few and I’ve been married for 13 years. Plus, after “Surviving Church as a Single” became one of the biggest posts ever on Stuff Christians Like I felt like the married readers needed some love too. Without further ado, I give you:

The Ultimate Christian Wedding Scorecard

1. You have someone read a Bible verse at your wedding. = +1 point for each verse

2. You have someone read 1 Corinthians 13, love is patient at your wedding = +2 points

3. You have someone read verses from Song of Solomon in the message version of the Bible and the verses sound vaguely like a Prince lyric and somehow include the phrase, “let’s make out.” = +3 points

4. The person you ask to read the verse is not a Christian and your primary purpose in asking them is that you hope that touching the Bible will rub off on them via osmosis. = +1 point

5. You do a unity candle. = +2 points

6. You weave three ribbons (representing you, your spouse and God) into a single strand that cannot be torn asunder. = +2 points

7. You refuse to hold a bachelor party because they’re evil. = +1 point

8. You hold a bachelor party but call it a “guys that love Jesus golfing together party” = +3 points

9. The pastor that does your ceremony cracks a joke about sex = +3 points for every joke

10. You and your spouse take communion during the ceremony = +3 points

11. You and everyone at the wedding take communion during the ceremony = +4 points

12. You take a love offering during the ceremony = – 3 points

13. The pastor mentions the “don’t let the sun go down on your anger” principle = + 1 point

14. You have a live bird of prey at the podium with you and your bride in order to symbolize the “mount up like eagles” Bible verse = +10 points

15. You receive a, “As for me and my house” plaque for a wedding gift = +1 point for each

16. You receive a Thomas Kinkade painting for a wedding gift = +1 point for each

17. You receive the first 15 volumes of the Left Behind book series in a commemorative wheelbarrow because the girth of that many books is physically staggering = +5 points

18. You don’t have dancing at the reception because it’s held in a church and that church doesn’t approve of dancing and you miss your chance to dance, dance, dance the night away Jon Acuff. = -1 point

19. You have dancing at the reception and your grandmother gets on the floor and dances to Fergie’s song “Fergilicious,” Bennett Acuff (my little brother) = +1 million points

20. At any point during the ceremony a Shofar horn makes a cameo = + 1 point

21. The favor you give everyone is a Bible = +3 points

22. The Bibles are Gideon editions you stole from the hotel all the guests are staying at. = -4 points

23. Your pastor can’t resist the temptation of a captive audience and ad libs the entire gospel message in the middle of your vows = +1 point

24. Your pastor asks you to take a seat for a minute so that people have room to come forward for the altar call. = +2 points

25. Your pastor mentions the phrase “covenant relationship” = + 2 points for each use

26. Your pastor tells the story of Adam and Eve = +3 points

27. Your pastor highlights the ever controversial verses about “wives submitting to their husband” = +1 point

28. Your aunt boos or hisses from the crowd when she hears this = – 2 points

29. The church you get married in lets you know upfront that they only allow “sacred music” and if you get married there you better expect the organ to be the main instrument used. = +3 points

0 – 10 Points = Not a big fan of God huh? Didn’t feel like inviting Him to your wedding? Didn’t think you could find a tux big enough for Him? Interesting.

11-20 Points = I don’t want to call you “lukewarm” but it’s possible you registered for gifts at that store, “I’m kind of a Christian.”

21+ Points = Welcome to the big leagues. Your wedding is just like church except there’s cake at the end. Onward Christian soldier.

How did you score? I hit over 30 because we got married at a conservative church in Atlanta.

How about you?

What other Christian wedding staples did I miss?

What did you do at your wedding or weddings you’ve been to?

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Comments

  1. Sassy Lady says

    Went to a wedding where the minister admonished the couple with the wrong verse. The unfortunate part wasn’t that the minister had a severe lisp (cue up the Princess Bride soundtrack) but that the verse was Ezekiel 16:35, “Therefore, O harlot, hear the word of The Lord.”

    Not even sure how you’d score that.

  2. Eric Bishop says

    A friend of my brother-in-law had a potluck for the reception! Nothing says wedding food like mayo slathered finger sandwiches and all varieties of “salads” (with mayo, of course)!

  3. Martin says

    since we had the reception in the basement of the Baptist church, we couldn’t / wouldn’t serve champagne. We did serve Martinelli’s but the guests were afraid to take a (plastic) glass until the pastor said – “come on folks, it’s Martinelli’s – take one to toast the new couple”

  4. Almost had an exorcism says

    I’m embarrassed to say I don’t remember enough details of my wedding to know how I’d score, but I was in a wedding (bride’s married maid) a few years ago that would’ve scored quite high.

    The message pastor (there were at least 3 present) was so intent on preaching the Gospel and then some that I completely passed out – hitting my head on the piano as I went down. I should’ve sat down as soon as I felt a little dizzy, but I fainted while debating whether to go to a pew or sit at the alter next to me and ruin the pictures. While unconscious the pastor started talking about all the spiritual warfare that must be battling inside me, but I hold that a woman 7 months pregnant shouldn’t have to stand for over an hour long wedding sermon! The pastor went rogue. It was never the bride’s intention, or I’m sure we would’ve all been encouraged to sit.

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  8. pyvsi says

    I was wondering when the Praise Dancing would get mentioned for the charismatic crew.
    Bonus points for the couple who not only had “prophetic dancers” at their wedding, but also their first official act as a married couple was to pray (prophetically, of course) together over everyone present at the wedding.

    Oh, then there was the other wedding where the bride’s father’s flight from out of town got delayed and the wedding started a couple of hours late, so of course there was a whole revival-style church service, complete with fiery preaching and altar call, in the meantime. Also, the lady who sat next to me was prepared — with a tambourine. Her own personal tambourine that she carries everywhere with her in her big, BIG purse. She also had a full size bottle of anointing oil (Pompeiian extra virgin, cold pressed, to be exact) in case anyone would need her assistance casting out demons. But yes, the tambourine got some good, good use.

    I don’t know how many of y’all are familiar with the high energy form of worship/dance called “shoutin'” – but the wedding party’s recessional was shoutin’ music. A beautiful COGIC wedding if I ever saw one.

  9. Andy says

    All from weddings I went to this summer:
    The service follows the complete liturgy from Book of Common Prayer +10 pts.
    The service is outside in 90 degree heat, and lasts an hour and a half. +1 pts.
    The pastor gives an actual sermon about the cross, and doesn’t even mention marriage till the vows. +5.
    All of the groomsmen wash the Bride’s feet, while the bridesmaids wash the groom’s feet +2 plus 10,000 awkward pts.
    The pastor cusses at least once, shocking a third of the congregation, amuses another third, and the final third sits there awkwardly. -1
    The reception is 30 mins. away from the church, because the church is in the country and doesn’t allow dancing or alcohol. -1
    The guests who are youth leaders and seminary students get hammered at the reception. -1
    The photo booth includes bible verse signs +1
    The Father of the Bride and sister of the Bride both make twenty sex jokes in their toasts, while the Best Man quotes C.S. Lewis. -1 and +1
    The Sister of the Bride mentions that the bride was wearing a thong, but is no longer wearing it. +2 million awkward points.
    A random guest proposes to his girlfriend during the reception without prior knowledge or approval from the couple. +20 awkward points.
    The final dance is to Be a Man from Mulan. +2000 awesome points

  10. Lauren says

    Don’t forget the father/daughter dance to Butterfly Kisses!!!!
    I think we get half a million points because while weost certainly had dancing, my grandma wasn’t out dancing to Fergi. Lol.
    We had no Bible verses read, the person who read ‘i carry your heart’ was a Christian, we had unity sand instead of a candle, we didn’t take communion or a love offering (we did have everyone give us money instead of gifts so we could give it to a charity), “the gospel” wasn’t presented, I don’t remember any sex jokes, I had a friend write a song and sing as a surprise for my husband, the favors were pop rocks, we had dancing AND an open bar, we got married in a barn and not a church, we had people sign picture frames, the only Bible was the pastors, and my dad and I danced to a Beatles song. I’m definitely going to Hell. 😉
    I’ve been a bridesmaid in plenty of those types of weddings though. Maybe I can get some secondhand holiness.

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