Weddings as Spiritual Experiences
Here is some advice from your fellow students on how to make your (or someone you loveís) wedding a more spiritual experience, and ways couples, as newlyweds, can invite the spirit into their new home:
Throughout Your Engagement:
1. Read articles about temple marriage by general authorities together.
2. If you havenít been endowed yet, go to the temple monthly to do baptisms for the dead to get used to attending the temple and the spirit there.
3. Study the scriptures together and individually.
4. Give yourself a solid curfew--go home and go to bed before midnight.
5. Learn as much as you can about the temple.† If you havenít been through the temple yet, attend a temple preparation class.
6. Make a kiss something you give to the one you love, not an event you participate in.
7. Discuss what you want in your marriage, your love for each other, and the goals you each have for your future.
8. Share your hopes, dreams and future plans with each other.
9. Know that everything will fall into place for the wedding- don't stress too much.
10. Spend time building family relationships with your in-laws.
11. Serve together.
12. Listen to spiritual talks on tape with each other on Sunday afternoons, and then talk about what the speaker said.
13. Discuss your desires of HOW you want to eat together, read together, how often, how you like your alone/meditation time, and how often you'll attend the temple together.† Patiently continue after you marry, to discuss and practice your goals of keeping the spiritual connection and priorities in your marriage.
14. Take marriage preparation classes and marriage enhancement classes.† They give you an eternal perspective and help you rise above the mundane dimness of everyday life and find ways of practically resolving conflict, and having realistic expectations and better communication.
15. Discuss plans and schedules for how you would like to do things together in your new family (when you want to study the scriptures together, how often you will attend the temple and when, when you will have FHE and what you want to do, etc.).
16. Donít concern yourself with pleasing everyone's wishes; it isn't possible.
17. Read the books your bishop suggests before you get married.
18. Don't sweat the un-eternal stuff.
Well Before the Wedding Day:
1. Take care of as many wedding details as you can well in advance of the wedding day, so you can begin concentrating your planning on your marriage, rather than just the wedding.
2. Visit with family to give yourself plenty of rest and personal time during the days leading up to the wedding.
3. Buy or make a simple white temple dress and wear that to your wedding, rather than a big, hot, awkward, distracting wedding dress.† You can change into your wedding dress after the ceremony to take pictures outside.† You can then wear the white dress every time you go to the temple.† Also, call a temple matron to get detailed information about clothing requirements so there will be no surprises the day of.† Some temples have clothing there that is made for wedding ceremonies that you can borrow so you donít have to stress about bringing anything.† Some will rent simple wedding dresses to brides upon request.† Call your temple ahead of time to see what is available there.† Getting rid of dress worries will help you focus on what is important that day.
4. Talk to friends or family members who have recently been married in the temple about their experiences, partly to get their advice, but also to get excited about your future!
5. Delegate, delegate, delegate!† Your family will be happy to be able to help with wedding plans and details, and if you ever need more hands, roommates can come in very handy!
In the Days/Weeks Before the Wedding Day:
1. Go through the temple long enough before the wedding day that you are able to understand the covenants in the temple and feel comfortable with the garments so that you can focus on what is important on the day of your wedding.
2. Receive a Priesthood blessing the night before.
3. Focus more on your marriage and preparing for it and the covenants you will make than on the little details of the day.
4. Take pictures at the temple prior to or after your actual wedding day.† If you donít want to see each other in your nice clothes before the wedding, take the separate pictures (Bride alone, Groom alone, Bride and her family, Groom and his family, etc.) beforehand, so that the pictures that day are focused on the two of you together.
5. Drive together to the temple and talk about what you want to focus on and remember from your Wedding.
6. Write love notes to each other, and give them to each other soon before you enter the temple, so that you are focusing on your feelings of love for each other rather than your nervousness.
7. If you are able to receive your endowment well ahead of time, attend sessions often before your wedding.
On the Wedding Day, Before the Wedding:
1. Spend time with your fiancť on your wedding day to share your feelings and to pray to invite the Spirit.† Discuss what it means to you that you will be together eternally.
2. Spend time alone on your wedding day to contemplate and appreciate the significance and importance of the covenants being made.
3. Focus on the endowment and the covenants you are making with the Lord.
4. Pray for the Sprit to attend your wedding and to be part of your relationship.
5. Go into your wedding day expecting some things to go wrong, because they will!
6. Focus on the temple, not how you look, the traffic, etc.
7. Include in your schedule plenty of time to rest; youíll need it after traveling or just from the excitement of the events themselves.
On the Wedding Day, During the Wedding:
1. Look at the sealer (instead of just at each other).
2. Listen carefully to the words of the ceremony.
On the Wedding Day, After the Wedding:
1. Limit the number of activities actually on your wedding day.† Try to split up the events of the wedding on different days.† It is O.K. to have a dinner the night before or a reception even weeks later.
2. On your wedding night, pray together as a couple, asking Heavenly Father for Him to bless your marriage, and tell Him the goals that you would like to accomplish in your marriage (such as telling each other every day that you love each other), and ask for Him to help you with these goals.
In the Days/Weeks After the Wedding:
1. Have your reception far away from the temple so you will be alone together in the car and have plenty of time to talk about your experiences in that day.