I am writing in response to what you intend to do the night before our wedding. You indicated in your last letter to me that you intend to have a bridal shower or bachelorette party the night before our big day.
You said your “girls-girls” have decided to have a last night of fun with you before marriage takes you away from them. You explained that the bridal shower is an all-ladies’ night of eating, drinking and silly girls’ talks to spice up the night before your big day so you won’t miss it for anything. Your reason for not wanting to miss it was that it is the latest fad in town and every lady who is up to date with current trends does it.
I am sorry to say that this time, your wish may have to be curtailed. I don’t like this bridal shower idea, and I humbly appeal to you to cancel any preparation towards it. My reason for not supporting this idea is simple: it is unnecessary.
Marriage is a serious business. It is supposed to be a solemn occasion in a joyous way. It is the beginning of a difficult journey. Marriage can enhance one’s dreams or shatter them completely depending on how things turn out. You don’t have to approach it lightly.
I recently spoke to a woman in Tema, who painted a very lovely picture of the marriage she looked up to. Four years into that marriage, however, her life has been turned upside down. One night while she slept, a bullet hit her chest and came out through her back. She was seven months pregnant. Doctors say the bullet might have been small because it didn’t leave a big wound on its way through the beautiful body it disfigured. But its sinister path was through the main nerve in her spinal cord.
The police believe the bullet was shot from a pistol at close range, probably by someone in the room with her. They say there is no evidence of a break into the couple’s room. The woman believes her husband shot her. It is not clear what further police investigation will reveal and how judgment will go in the court. What is very clear, however, is that this woman is paralysed from her chest downwards. She cannot pass out urine or faecal waste. She cannot turn herself on the bed she lies and is currently battling with bedsores.
Her husband has refused to accept the baby that was born through a caesarean section while she was in the hospital battling for her life. Police say her husband was having an affair with another woman. The woman confirmed it when the police invited her for questioning. The otherwise happy marriage has become something else and the bedridden woman believes “people change” so her husband may have changed in the course of their marriage.
Serwaa, this is just one of the many inexplicable tragedies that greet people in marriages. These stories should not scare us. They alert us to take marriage more seriously and pray towards it. The night before your wedding is not the night to mess around with friends.
When soldiers are airborne and are about to be dropped with parachutes, their mood before they are thrown out is not that of jubilation, whether they are in combat or they are training. It is a serious business out there and it needs a lot of prayers.
The Bible teaches us that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood but against principalities and wicked forces. These wicked forces are not distant demons. Some of them are the very friends you will be having fun with the night before your wedding. They may laugh with you but there is more to it. Our elders say when a friend laughs with you in your success; you see their teeth and not their mind.
I told you the story of my friend Kofi Boadi, who had an affair with his wife’s best friend, Clara, on the night before their wedding. Audrey and Clara were like twins; you would not see one without the other. When Audrey and Kofi were about to get married, it was Clara’s idea to organise the bridal shower. Clara, however, left the party immediately Audrey arrived. She said she was going to attend to an emergency and would be back soon.
The only time Audrey knew something had happened between her husband and her best friend was when Clara said she was pregnant. This was a month into her marriage and Kofi confessed she made a mistake when Clara came to him at the hotel where he was supposed to dress and prepare before moving the venue for the wedding.
Serwaa, I am not saying that I will entertain any of your friends or anyone in your absence. I am not giving you the excuse to do anything stupid. All that I want you to understand is that not everyone who wishes you well does so with a clean heart. Some actually mean the exact opposite of what they say. Not everyone, even in your family, is happy you are getting married. If a woman can sleep with her best friend’s groom the night before the wedding, then she can as well poison her best friend so that she can hold on to that man. Some also resort to spiritual warfare.
You have heard about instances the bride goes to church on the wedding day but the groom never turns up. Some marriages break on the wedding nights while others only survive beyond the honeymoon because the couple need time to go through the divorce process. So you don’t go having fun instead of praying to God psyching yourself up for the journey ahead.
When you talked about bridal shower, I decided to do a simple search on the internet to know its origins. What I read from Wikipedia is that a “bridal shower is a gift-giving party held for a bride-to-be in anticipation of her wedding. The custom originated in the 1890s and is today most common in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
“The history of the custom is rooted not necessarily for the provision of goods for the upcoming matrimonial home, but to provide goods and financial assistance to ensure the wedding may take place.”
When bridal shower started in Belgium in 1860, it was used to raise funds to support the bride when she could not afford a dowry or when her father would not support her because he did not approve of the marriage. In our part of the world, for instance, the man bears all the cost, and in some instances, the women generously help. That is if they are not counseled by Counselor Lutterodt.
So why are you still yearning for bridal shower? Why do you want to do it because everyone is doing it?
Serwaa, marriage is a serious business. It’s a journey full of uncertainties. It is not something to be toyed with. Let’s dedicate the few days to the wedding to serious prayer and deeper reflection of the journey ahead. On seriousness shall we build our marriage and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.