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The Strangest Tears of All

My neighbor Blanca and I have connected sporadically over the last few years of living side by side. We both lead busy lives, yet we share a bond that transforms quick chats into heart-level conversation. She helped me with a Spanish lesson. We both love carbs. We both fight stubborn pounds. We’ve both made bad choices in life. We’ve both been single for many years. She’s a few years younger than me, so the one thing she doesn’t have that I do is gray hair.

Blanca got married today.

She walked down the aisle of St. Vincent de Paul between her parents, glowing in her white gown. Two small girls dresses in white tottered after her, clutching the edge of her long veil. Tears pooled in my eyes.

Her parents, also our neighbors, were resplendent in dress clothes such as I had never seen them in. Her dad wore a tuxedo. Her mom wore a lovely navy blue dress. The other women of the family sisters clustered close by in maroon.

I didn’t understand much of the Spanish service, although I did pick up that the priest was talking about the way marriage mimics the relationship between Christ and the church. I also identified which Bible verse he was reading a time or two, mostly because I knew them well in English.

Marnell understood even less than I, although he seemed to receive quite a bit of inspiration from the Bose speaker system. Despite towering high above us, the slender gray speaker was scarcely noticeable in the architecture at the front of the church.

I’ve been blessed by Blanca’s commitment to serving God. She’s been involved in discipleship classes at her church. When she and her fiancé started renting from our friends Reuben and Carmen, they made a point of not living together until after the wedding.

And now, that day is today.

There are a lot of things in the world to cry about. But the strangest tears of all are the ones that slip from our eyes when something touches our hearts in a place of deep beauty.

I’m so happy for her.

11 Responses to The Strangest Tears of All

  1. Christine in Maine June 8, 2019 at 6:49 pm #

    Marriage is a beautiful picture of Christ and His church; I am happy for your friend. Unfortunately the Catholic church teaches that good works are an integral part of salvation, that one is saved by grace plus works–which is not grace at all. The Bible says that we are saved by grace, not works. I pray that she and her husband would not only enjoy a happy marriage, but that they would seek and find the Savior, that they would be born again, and that they would trust in Christ’s righteousness alone for salvation. May the Lord richly bless their lives in every way.

    • Katrina June 8, 2019 at 6:55 pm #

      Christine, I don’t doubt that is typical. This particular church does have a good reputation for (at least some) sound teaching, which surprised our pastor who used to be Catholic before his conversion.

  2. Christine in Maine June 8, 2019 at 8:08 pm #

    The Web site for that church advertises typical Catholic publications, so my thinking is that if it really were different, it would not want to promote heresy, which it also would be doing by remaining Catholic. The enemy knows how to mix enough sound teaching into something to make it appear good. If you ask a Catholic if he is saved by grace, he will likely agree, but he is also taught that his works are just as important for salvation. Menno Simons had the right idea; when he learned the truth, he fled the Catholic church.

    • Katrina June 8, 2019 at 8:51 pm #

      Thanks for your thoughts, Christine. I haven’t seen their website and wasn’t intending to make a doctrinal statement. I love my friend’s sincerity and I believe she is born again, but I strongly support our Anabaptist beliefs and wish everyone in Elkhart could be part of an Anabaptist church! We would have to expand our sanctuary 😀

  3. Katrina June 8, 2019 at 8:50 pm #

    Thanks for your thoughts, Christine. I haven’t seen their website and wasn’t intending to make a doctrinal statement. I love my friend’s sincerity and I believe she is born again, but I strongly support our Anabaptist beliefs and wish everyone in Elkhart could be part of an Anabaptist church! We would have to expand our sanctuary 😀

  4. Shirley Martin June 8, 2019 at 10:20 pm #

    I love how you have friends from all kinds of backgrounds Katrina. You greatly inspire me! God bless the marriage you witnessed today.
    Shirley Martin

    • Katrina June 8, 2019 at 10:22 pm #

      Thanks Shirley!

  5. Angie Berkshire June 10, 2019 at 4:58 pm #

    Oh thanks for sharing this Katrina!!! Could you give that beautiful bride a big ol’ hug from an old friend?? This brought tears of joy to my eyes!!! She is beautiful… but what makes her more beautiful is knowing that she is living for God!!! So proud of her and her fiance for the good choices they are making now. Lovely, lovely, lovely. Again… THANKS for sharing!!! 🙂

    • Katrina June 10, 2019 at 5:03 pm #

      I will try to do that! Thanks for the kind words.

  6. Donella June 13, 2019 at 3:45 pm #

    This is Blanca from girl’s club way back?!! How beautiful to know that she is living for Jesus! And the wedding looks gorgeous!

    • Katrina June 13, 2019 at 3:46 pm #

      Yes it is! 😀

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