Wed on the Fourth of July?

When I mentioned to a friend that I had a wedding scheduled for the Fourth of July, he joked that July 4, “Independence Day” seemed a better day for a divorce ceremony than for a wedding ceremony. I suppose on the surface that would appear to be true. But if you look again and consider some other angles on July 4 as a wedding day option, maybe it will make a little more sense.

For example, when someone marries, that person becomes independent from the tyranny of the modern dating scene. I’ll admit, I’ve been married more than a few years and I don’t know first-hand what it’s like out there these days. But the reports from friends who have dated or who have tried to date recently are not so good. When you marry a true friend and life partner, you are free to put all of that craziness of dating behind you!

OK, maybe that’s stretching it a bit.

On a more serious note, let’s consider for a moment the signers of the Declaration of Independence back on that hot summer day in 1776 Philadelphia. What they did that day took tremendous courage. They put it all on the line when they signed that document. If caught by the British, they could have been hung for treason. Yet they took that chance because they believed that their actions could eventually provide a better life for all Americans. Of course, there were no guarantees that the American experiment would succeed, but they took the chance anyway.

So, too, with marriage. There are no guarantees that the two people getting married so enthusiastically today are going to have a good marriage tomorrow. In fact, statistically speaking, there seems to be about as good a chance for an unsuccessful marriage as there is for a successful one. But every day people step up and proclaim in front of family and friends that they are going to love and honor this one other person for the rest of their lives. In making the choice for a committed relationship, a person can find a certain freedom to move forward in sharing their journey of life with another human being. Are they taking a chance? You bet. Is it worth it? Well, I guess you’ll have to ask them, for the answer will likely vary from person to person.

Then again, on a less serious note, for some couples, the choice to wed on the Fourth of July could be based on something as simple and delightful as my experience a few years ago while attending my cousin’s July Fourth wedding. The wedding ceremony was lovely, the dinner was delicious, and now as the sun was setting it was time to go out on the deck for the local fireworks display. We were served champagne and chocolate dipped strawberries as the fireworks exploded over our heads. For those of us at the wedding, the fireworks were a fantastic way to celebrate both the birthday of our country and the beginning of a marriage. Not a bad reason for having a July Fourth wedding, now is it?

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