Title: "Forgiven- True Church Wedding Story- Contest" Author: Unknown
My father and I had not spoken for many years. It had been a messy divorce between himself and my mother, but aren't they all? Anyway, I was told for many years that my father was the one that ruined the marriage and the one that had destroyed the love between them so for whatever reason I believed her and did not speak to my father for 12 years, from the ages of 15- 27.
One day when I least expected it I received a wedding invitation in the mail. It was to his wedding. I pondered and prayed on whether to attend this sacred ceremony. I spoke to some of my friends who knew his fiance and they suggested that I go, if for no other reason than to meet my new step-mother. So I replied with trepidation and then decided to go to the service.
My father saw me at the service and his eyes welled up with tears. This was the first time that I could ever remember my father crying so openly. The years of hurt and pain between us slipped away under the stained glass window of a dove in the vestibule of that church. He did not bring up questions about why I had not contacted him nor did I dredge up the past in regards to the divorce. Instead in that moment we both knew that we had made some terrible mistakes and I believe at that moment we both asked God to forgive us our trespasses. We were able to do on his wedding that which we had not been able to do for 12 years, forgive. We hugged and in that hug more volumes were spoken that could ever be imagined.
After a few seconds of us standing there with the tears flowing freely he introduced me to my soon to be new step-mother. She looked radiant in her gown of white. She smiled a real smile and whispered to me, Thank you- this is the best wedding gift your father could have ever received.
My father proudly introduced me to others in the congregation as his daughter. The congregation of the church welcomed me and made me feel at home, even though it had been several years since I had set foot inside of a cathedral let alone stay for an entire service. As the service continued I became more and more comfortable with the congregation and began to sing louder and louder.
At the conclusion of the service my dad asked me if I would like to sit at the head table with him at the reception and get to know my step-mother some. I readily agreed and spent the remainder of the night, laughing, and hearing stories about the past 12 years from my dad and his new wife.
Today my dad and I have a very good relationship. We have been talking continuously since that wedding day. I now am married my self and my father had the opportunity to give me away and my husband and myself have 2 precious children who have been baptized into that congregation that so readily welcomed me. And who would have believed that this relationship was rekindled with a practicing of one of God's greatest gifts, forgiveness.
Very sweet story! As a Dad, our daughters are so precious. I teared up reading your story and I would tear up too if a lost daughter came home!
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