A Simple Life, a Childlike Faith

A Simple Life, a Childlike Faith


No royal wedding

posted by Linda G. Howard

It is my understanding that the Rowan William, Archbishop of Canterbury, has written two prayers for Prince William and Kate Middleton.  One is for adults to pray; and the other is a precious and simple prayer for school children.  Additionally, the Catholic Bishop‘s Conference has released a prayer for the nation’s Catholics to pray for the royal couple.

There is no doubt that the world awaits the wedding day on Friday, April 29.

The women want to see the gown, the flowers, the hairstyles, the carriage and the shoes. The men, who aren’t making money from the Royal Wedding,  simply want to see the entire thing to be finished.  This is the fairy-tale event for which every little girl dreams.  Conversely, it is the event that every red-blooded man dreads.

Most men and women in the world will not have a royal wedding when they marry.

For one reason or the other, they may even choose the simplest, least expensive way to get married.  I seen the wedding pictures of a good friend several times.  Now faded, they were taken with an inexpensive Kodak camera.  The photographer was a friend.  There are about 10 or 12 pictures.

The bride wore a lovely, white street-length dress.  She purchased it at a department store.  The groom wore a black suit.  There was one charming bouquet of flowers made of white daisies and fern.  The bride carried it.  The best man and maid of honor wore street clothes.

Only a few months before, the couple had been full-time students and worked 40 hours a week to pay their college expenses.  Together the bride and groom  planned every detail of the service.  Together, they pooled their meager finances to be able to give a small honorarium to the pastor conducting the service.  Because the couple could not afford an elaborate reception, there were simple refreshments after the wedding.  No champagne toasts were given.

The nation did not pray for the couple.  School children didn’t have a prayer to recite at the beginning of the day.  Yet there was prayer.  A lot of prayer had ushered this couple into holy matrimony.  Godly parents had prayed.  Friends, Bible teachers and pastors had prayed.  The bride and groom had prayed together and apart.

Even more, there was a great sense of mission that encircled the wedding pair.  This man and woman set into motion a great adventure as they founded a ministry within the mentally challenged community called The Special Gathering.  They began their marriage pouring themselves into the lives of people for whom few people in their city would appreciate or welcome.  Their members would never marry or have babies.  For the struggling pair financial benefits were forgotten and sacrifices were made again and again.  The ministry grew as did their love for each other and the community they serve.

More than 25 years have passed.  Now, at least 500 mentally challenged individuals regularly pray for the man they call their pastor and his wife.  With eight chapel programs, this ministry reaches from Walterboro, South Carolina to Vero Beach, Florida.

After the Royal Wedding, the royal couple may live happily ever after. I pray, along with their nation, that they will.   However, there is little doubt that Prince William and Kate will not be as loved as the two commoners whose simple wedding day was coupled with the birth of a ministry that would touch thousands of lives within the mentally challenged community.

What are the similarities or differences between what you believe a marriage should be and the Royal Wedding?  Will you pray for Prince William and Kate?  What event initiated your adult journey?  When you began your journey did you have a relationship with the Lord?



  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Steve McFarland

    I felt that my wedding to my wife was a royal wedding. We asked God to be with us from that day forward. It felt as if he was all around.
    I noted that alot people in the U.S. are knocking the English Royal Family for their traditional Royal Wedding. They each asked God into their lives. As you rattle your gosippy tongues and cast degrading remarks to other peoples (countries) traditions, you degrade yourself.

    • http://specialgathering.wordpress.com Linda G. Howard

      Thanks for your comment, Steve. It’s true that each country or culture has different traditions and we should respect them.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Gilda

    I enjoyed reading about the couple who has dedicated their life to working with those that are intellectually disabled. It is a blessing to do the will of God. The wedding of the royal couple was beautiful. We need to pray for them that their marriage will last and also lift up in prayer the pastor and his wife. Morality is important and God’s word should not be taken lightly. Maybe the pastor and his wife will have a vow renewal ceremony and in lien of wedding gifts money will be given to the ministry.

    • http://specialgathering.wordpress.com Linda G. Howard

      Thank you, Gilda for contributing to the discussion. You said it well that God’s word should not be taken lightly. I hoped to contrast this godly couple with the royal wedding. Thanks for amplify that point.

  • http://March28,2011 Pamela Adams

    God bless this precious couple who have ministered in the mentally challenged community. Most of the time people walk by and don’t acknowledge them. You are doing what Jesus wants us to do as his children. Also, God bless Prince William and Kate that God leads them to be the leaders that He would have them to be.

  • http://March28,2011 Pamela Adams

    Let’s all remember when Jesus walked on this earth, whom he reached out to and whom he placed as his disciples to be with him. He walked places where he was mocked by the priests. It was the religious people who looked down on Jesus.

    Jesus reached out to the lowest of the low, those who were hated and despised by man. Let’s not forget where he brought us from, what kind of life did we live and what kind of life are we living now. Remember what it says in his word about the molt and the beam. Only God himself knows the heart and you don’t know what happens behind closed doors. That’s speculation.

    It’s easy to see things that are right before your eyes but what about those hidden sins that nobody sees, the Lord knows every thought, every deed, everything we are going to think, say, or do before it’s done. Always remember he is God and you can’t hide anything from him.

    • http://specialgathering.wordpress.com Linda G. Howard

      Thanks, Pam for taking the time to comment about the blog. The couple I wrote about are amazing and they have given their lives to the Lord.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment dvanilla

    None of us are perfect and God knows that. God expects one thing out of humanity and that is to get it right. Prince William and Kate are doing that and that is getting it right by marrying. It’s critical when others judge someone else and that same judgement is put back on you.

    The word of God simply says, Judge not, lest ye be judged. So all of you who are condemning them because they live together the same is put back on you from God. While we were yet sinners God sent his perfect plan for salvation to us because God loved us. We are sinners before we are anything else; and our human nature reveals that.

    This is not to say if you are a Christian you are to live any kind of way. Yet if that time comes where you slip, get back up and dust yourself off. Get it right, repent and go on. Humanity is the most who makes mistakes whether verbally, thinking, or action. And we tend to look down on others as the long time saying, “You have no room to talk.” Jesus had and has room to talk because He was perfect.

    • http://specialgathering.wordpress.com Linda G. Howard

      Ohh, dvanilla, you said a mouth full of good stuff. Thanks for reminding all of us that we are merely sinners who have been forgiven by God’s grace.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Mary

    I couldn’t agree with you more Gustave (Verdult). William and Kate are marrying before God but they are not living His ways by living together and sleeping together before they are married. If William is to become the ‘defender of the faith’, then he should be following God’s holy laws and be an example to his people and others around the world. What rush did he have to marry Kate when he was enjoying all the benefits beforehand? I wish them all the best and it’s obvious that they love each other, but I don’t believe they did the right thing in living together outside of marriage. It seems that William and Kate think more about what their fellow man thinks than what God thinks. It’s God’s approval we should seek first.

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/simplelife/ Linda G. Howard

    Thank you, Gustave, for your comment. The Royal Family has had many tragic events during their lives. And it is true that most of them have been “homemade.” However, God’s desire is to redeem and set free those bound by the bondage of guilt and sin. My prayers for this couple are not a mockery of virginity but an acknowledgement of God’s gracious forgiveness in the face of repentance.

    Again, thank you for taking the time to remind us of another dimension for our need for prayer.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment gustave verdult

    Why don’t you people take off your blinders? This couple defies God’s Laws by their shack-up relationship before their marriage. It sends a message to everyone that virginity has no value. I wouldn’t be at all surprised this marriage to go on the rocks. Their independence of God’s Laws sets an example to the ignorant masses that morality has no value. That God is an idiot.

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