Every day is indeed special… but yesterday was more so. I say that because Spirit’s Presence and hand in the unfolding of events was so clear.
Yesterday Rog and I were called into service to marry Alana and Matthew, a college couple who wanted a simple wedding ceremony in Sedona. They asked us to gather the two witnesses required by the state and to select a locale. We chose the site of the Amitabha Stupa, a bronze image of the Buddha of Limitless Light that is filled with hundreds of millions of prayers for peace, sacred relics, and ritual objects. It is a beacon of light and virtue and is considered a vortex of Enlightened Presence, radiating waves of compassion to all beings. And, you don’t have to be a Buddhist to visit it and benefit from it.
Here the grounds have character, the vistas are beautiful and abundant. There is even a ramada to offer some protection from the elements, which was a consideration yesterday as it was blustery and there was a chance of rain.
Rog and I arrived early to go over the logistics. Over the course of time while waiting for the bride and groom to arrive, not only did the two people we’d asked to be witnesses show up, but one-by-one so did three other people we knew! When we explained why we were at the Stupa wearing our ministerial stoles, they were all intrigued. We asked if they’d like to join us in the wedding and they readily agreed.
Each of our five friends contributed to the wedding celebration both in the physical realm and spiritual. One friend led the group in the ceremonial walk of seven times around the Stupa, chanting a Tibetan prayer. Another had a video camera with him as he had bicycled over to the Stupa to shoot sacred garden space – little did he know he’d be photographing a wedding! Another had an orange and a bar of chocolate that she turned into a ceremonial offering for the wedding (she found out you’re not permitted to leave food as an offering at the Stupa) – she was also the unexpected still photographer. Another offered up words of congratulations, love, and wisdom as we toasted the newlyweds drinking sparkling apple cider in plastic champagne glasses (the bride and groom’s of course were specially decorated). And, our fifth friend provided restaurant suggestions for a romantic dinner. All contributed their spiritual consciousness.
Much of this was unplanned – well, at least by us humans. There was way too much synchronicity and “woo-woo-ness” to go into detail here, but suffice is to say that Spirit indeed had a plan. Nine beings were brought together at a sacred space in Sedona to celebrate a sacred sacrament. It was awesome.
Each ‘guest’ played a part in uplifting and supporting Alana and Matthew as they embarked on their new life. Each called themselves into service on a moment’s notice. This was a wedding that could not have been more perfect if it had been planned for 12 months, had cost $50,000, and 200 guests attended. For this perfect wedding was orchestrated by God and God needs no advance timing, money, or more people than is required to do His work.
We converged at the Stupa as if by clockwork and this coming together was not lost on any of us. I don’t think this event was just about two people entering holy matrimony. I think it was so much about God wanting to send us messages – many messages – and clearly announce Its existence. I’m still processing it all; I’m so grateful to have been a part of this extraordinary experience – thank You, Spirit!
We joked that this couple had eloped because they have big families and didn’t want to have a big wedding where most of the guests are… well, ya know, strangers. Instead they chose to be with us… strangers! But of course, we were not strangers at all. We came together as one family under God, with God’s presence shining. It was indeed a holy day to recognize God all around and in us.
Congratulations, Alana and Matthew! And, thank you for bringing us and God all together to celebrate you!