rachel Dear Jamie in 2001,

You are getting married to the man of your dreams!  What a beautiful day that this will be for you.  God has redeemed you so much in the past 2 years and you have grown so much in your faith and your life.  I want to remind you of this note that your wonderful friend Rachel gave you the night before your wedding.  She knows you so well and knows your desire to love your man well.  She also knows the forgiveness you have tasted from Jesus and she knows the love that Aaron has for you in spite of any baggage you might bring to the marriage.  Her letter will minister to you so much on your special day and in fact you will keep it for years and read it to remember God’s faithfulness in your life.

“Jamie, I have completely run out of money, so I was unable to buy you a wedding gift.  Instead I decided to write you a note, because God gave me something very precious that I believe He wants me to give to you for your wedding gift.  The other day I was just flipping through my bible and these words jumped off the page.  God spoke volumes to me as I read this passage in Ezekiel.  As I thought and prayed about what I could give you as a gift, God spoke to my heart and told me to give you these words from HIS love letter.  I pray that God speaks directly to your heart words of hope, peace and love.  you are awesome and he wrote these words for you.

“Later I passed by, and when I looked at your and saw that you were old enough for love, I spread the corner of my garment over you and covered your nakedness.  I gave you my solemn oath and entered into covenant with you, declares the sovereign Lord, and you became mine.  I bathed you with water and washed the blood from you and put ointments on you.  I clothes you with an embroidered dress and put leather sandals on you.  I dressed you in fine linen and covered you with costly garments.  I adorned you with jewelry;  I put bracelets on your arms and a necklace around your neck, and I put a ring on your nose, and earrings on your ears and a beautiful crown on your head.  So you were adorned with gold and silver; your clothes were of fine linen and costly fabric and embroidered cloth.  Your food was fine flour, honey and olive oil.  You became very beautiful and rose to be a queen.  And your fame spread among the nations on account of your beauty, because the splendor I had give you made your beauty perfect, declares the Sovereign Lord.”  (Ezekiel 16:8-14)

I know that God has made you a new creations – it is so evident.  God has restored you from the pain and regrets of your past.  You are completely pure in the sight of the God who has created you.  He has washed you, adorned you and put a crown on your head and called you beautiful.  Isn’t that so incredible?  Isn’t HE so incredible?  We serve such a faithful God, who takes so much delight in the work of restoration.  Tomorrow as you dress in your wedding garments, remember how Christ dressed you.  The reward he has given you is priceless – an incredible, Godly man who loves Christ and you.  I pray that your love for each other grows over the years.  You and Aaron have been such a testimony to Matt and I.  I am so honored that you would let me be such a special part of your wedding.  I praise God for you and for our friendship.  You are so awesome, and I love you so much.  I pray that tomorrow is the most wonderful day of your life and the beginning of a thousand more!  Thank you for everything!  Happy Wedding!

Have sweet dreams!  Rachel”

Remember this letter, and remember that sometimes the sweetest gifts are words from the soul.  I don’t remember what one other person gave me on my wedding day, but I always remember the love that Rachel gave me in her words.

Love,

Jamie in 2013