I Do: Part 2 {The Video}

Before I go into today’s post I want to share something with you.

Our friend and mentor, Harold, emailed us and said: “Did you have the Vow Renewal at a Horse barn on PURPOSE?” 

  Then he attached this:

IMG_20120524_194631 (2)

  2 very valuable, broken horses in the field next to the horse barn we renewed our vows in. 

Our jaws hit the floor. 

NO, we hadn’t planned it that way. 

We simply wanted a more casual venue then a church, and a vintage barn style renewal appealed to me.

  Do you remember why “broke” and horses mean so much to us?

Go read The Dream, then you’ll see why! 

   Only God could orchestrate something this cool.  To HIM be all praise and glory and honor!  For what we see as just strings, He sees as a beautiful tapestry.

  On to the post:  The video!  YAY!

  I specifically hired a professional videographer, rather than having someone run my home video camera, for you. 

  And for me.  But you were a lot of it.  🙂

  I thought it only fair since I shared my ashes with you, that you get to share in the Beauty part, too.

  Deanna and her husband, from Today for Tomorrow Productions did an AMAAAAZING job!  They were so kind, and went the extra mile.  They were very good about answering emails and communicating with us before our big day. I highly recommend them!  {You will see why in a second!}

IMG_3741IMG_3743

  So today, I am sharing first a Highlights clip, then the full video, divided into several videos since youtube only allows 20 minutes at a time. I understand the full video may not appeal to you, but watch as little or as much as you desire, and praise the Lord with us, for what He has done.

~T

Highlight Reel

 

Vow Renewal Part 1
Vow Renewal Part 2

I Do: Part 2 {The Ceremony II}

  This is post 2, head back to post 1 to read in order.

The ceremony continued……IMG_6267

IMG_7274editIMG_6840IMG_7253IMG_7236

A big thanks to Pastor Mark for coming out multiple times to set up and run the sound system for us!  Couldn’t have done it without him!

IMG_6888

IMG_7256IMG_7258IMG_7263editIMG_7275IMG_7276

  After the ceremony, we served cookies and farm fresh milk…..

IMG_6818edit{Thanks to Kasey and Eileen for making all the cookies!}

IMG_6042IMG_6054IMG_7298editIMG_6065IMG_6132IMG_7277

We also served Fruit pizzas, Dale’s famous popcorn and these…..

Chocolate Truffles!

Truffles (3)

Handmade from a wonderful someone who had read the blog and wanted to give to our special day….WOW.  What a blessing! 

{For you locals that were asking, I do have her contact info if you want to order from her for your special someone! The quality of these truffles far surpasses anything you’d find in the store!}

IMG_7282IMG_7284

IMG_7294IMG_7297IMG_7302

This next set of photos is from my friend, Heather of Heavinly Blessings.

———————————————————————————————-

11748_437341879623553_5072376_n319842_437923896232018_1964102134_n389235_437447479612993_1481383347_n179945_437923509565390_1656077794_n392385_437509516273456_401388933_n401650_437408969616844_741185757_n481171_437923686232039_732369448_n535705_437409122950162_783260179_n536518_437923602898714_1164717543_n536719_437923792898695_497299178_n577647_437923859565355_1001517237_n579412_437341832956891_1923760522_n580000_437425076281900_512203277_n

————————————————————————————————

Did you see in the earlier photos, that I had laid Scrabble letters all over the food IMG_7314editSIMPLY - Copytable spelling out I Love You and I Do etc? 

 IMG_4463 - Copy

  Well, look what our friend, MaryAnn made for us…having no idea I loved Scrabble letter EVERYTHING! 🙂

IMG_7317editSIMPLY (2)

  This has a very special place in our home.  LOVE it!

IMG_1604

IMG_7322editSIMPLYIMG_7311editSIMPLYIMG_7328editIMG_7345editsimplyIMG_7368editIMG_7372IMG_7371

IMG_6744edit

The End. 

No……..

The Beginning.

IMG_7306edit

~T

Unless otherwise mentioned, photos in this post are from:

 Whitney Hamilton Photography

I Do: Part 2 {The Ceremony}

This day is forever etched in my mind……

Tears.

Laughter. 

Second chances at a beautiful love story.

A pivotal moment on the road to healing.

New promises.

New rings.

Beauty from the devastating Ashes.

  And so begins, our I Do: Part 2.

*A BIG thank you to my blog friend, Mary for making the 
AWESOME vintage banners that you see on the barn doors! 

IMG_6832

  When people first came up to the barn, we had a Blessing Table in lieu of a guest book. 

IMG_7273edit

 They took a piece of this cute paper my friend, Jamie cut out for me (I paid her in Strawberry pie by the way!) and wrote a blessing on it, then clothes pinned it to the fence. IMG_6080

We had so much fun reading through them later!

IMG_6282edit

My best friend, Kasey opened the ceremony with these beautiful words.

IMG_6865edit

Good Evening and Welcome! There is no greater way to start this evening than with prayer! Please bow with me as we invite the Holy Spirit in this place tonight.
525822_437492396275168_1965960705_n She asked our Heavenly Father to have His way and be present in the hearts and minds of our guests, as they surround us while we commit our love and lives in this evening of “I Do …Part 2”.  Then went on to say…….

 As a married women I have gained a greater understanding what it means to be here today.  On this day, you are here to gather around Dale and Tonya, to stand witness to the vows and recommitments that will be spoken, so that when satan attacks and the load looks too heavy to carry….you will walk along side them and remind them of their covenant.

I Cor. 13  “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres…………Love never fails. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
Dale and Tonya choose love and forgiveness.  Today is a pivotal point in their journey to total healing.  What a blessing for Tonya to stay with Dale for all the wonderful things he has done right, instead of leaving him for the thing he did wrong.  I hope you too, can chose that path, because as it says in John 8:36  “Therefore, if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”  Praise His name!

IMG_6824

Shelby sang me down the aisle to this song by Francesca Battistelli:

I originally got this CD because I LOVED her song “This Is The Stuff”.  I had been praying for the Lord to show me what song I should walk down the aisle to, and as soon as this one came on, I froze at the kitchen sink, mid-dish and began to cry.  I KNEW this was “The One”.

  “Love’s not easy, but its worth it.  Whatcha gonna do when the bottom falls out and your left with nothing but your fear and your doubt to hold you? Who will hold you? 

……..Love can heal you, if you let it inside.  Oh remember now, love’s not easy, but its worth it.”

IMG_6906editSIMPLYIMG_6914IMG_6918IMG_6923IMG_6935editIMG_6936editCROPIMG_6938IMG_6940IMG_6944IMG_6948edit

Then Dale’s long time friend, Tim spoke:

IMG_6957

  “Dale and Tonya had a fairy tale courtship and wedding. They asked the Author of Love Himself to script them a beautiful love story, and He did. Even in the recent tragedy, the pen never left His mighty hand, and He is still writing that story.
Dale and Tonya went through a violation of a sacred boundary in their marriage. But Hope is not lost—they experienced God’s wonderful gift of restoration, allowing Him to take them through a rebuilding season. They are still growing, learning, and rebuilding. They are letting Him refocus and re-establish the foundation of success at the core of their romantic relationship. Jesus washed them clean and gave them a fresh start. God is in the business of offering beautiful new beginnings, which you are witnessing here today.IMG_6964edit

    Dale, jealously protect every expression of physical intimacy as a sacred treasure for your lifetime love, Tonya. Guard your heart and mind from the devil’s sneaky attacks. Sharpen your sword daily by digging into God’s word. Cloak yourself in the full armor of God, in essence, JESUS, so that everything coming and going from you must first filter through HIM. Today, commit to give her the gift of faithfulness by guarding your heart, eyes, and mind from the temptations of this world.
IMG_6972edit

Tonya, lavishly love Dale with all you have. God wants to build lovers who love as He does—with abandon. They give everything, with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. They sacrifice and face the most challenging difficulties for the “joy set before them” (Hebrews 12:2). Remember forgiveness is a choice and choose it daily. Trust is hard to build and easy to break, but rely on Jesus to strengthen you and give you peace as you and Dale rebuild your house of trust together each and every day for the rest of your lives.

IMG_6979edit
A poetic love is rare these days, but it is not out of reach. It will cost you everything, but what you receive in return is worth more than everything you possess now and everything you could possess for a thousand lifetimes.
Remember, God doesn’t need to imitate our culture’s style of love and romance. God has His own version of love—a poetic love that far surpasses anything Hollywood could ever create.
A day like today, marked by poetic love, is a day that shows the nature of God Himself—the original Author of true and lasting love.”

IMG_6978editIMG_6985editSIMPLYIMG_6986

Next, our Counselor, Dan spoke, then did the Vow and ring ceremony with us:

“I have had a God-ordained privilege of coming to know and grow with Dale and Tonya Ferguson these past few months.  I met two broken hearts many months ago and have watched God continue to hold true to His word.  They came with a sincere desire to repair a shattered dream.  They have both walked through much pain and joy in the process, and I can say with all my heart, that any couple that puts their trust in God as these have, and continue to, they WILL taste success.  I have been encouraged by their commitment to God’s word and His restoration to their lives and marriage.”

IMG_7063

Here are the vows we wrote to each other.  We neither one knew what the other had planned to say:

Dale went first.

IMG_6990

Tonya,
C.S. Lewis once said “A true friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you forget the words.” 

  IMG_7015editTonya, I forgot the words to our song, I lost my way.  I made terrible mistakes and broke your trust and  your heart. But when I turned around, there you where singing my song, standing faithfully by my side just like you promised.

  There is a verse that says, he who is forgiven much, loves much.  Tonya, I have never loved you more than I do now.  Thank you for singing my song when I forgot the words, thank you for loving me at my best and my worst. I will be the man you have always wanted me to be, and I Promise to be faithfully yours, to never let satan sneak up on me again. It is my greatest desire to be faithful to you and to love you. Always seeking to meet your needs, desiring to help you in every way as you heal, listening to you when you want to talk, holding you when you want to cry, wiping away all your tears, encouraging you in your walk with Christ, and standing faithfully by your side from this day forward. IMG_6993edit

   I give you all of me today; a new man, forgiven by grace and made new by the blood of Jesus. You are my best friend, my first love, my soul mate, and you make my world complete. If you let me, I’d like to earn your trust again. Tonya, never stop singing our song.

IMG_7001IMG_7023

Dale,
Today I give you my love without any limits.  I promise to accept the things you believe in, and always try to understand you, to be near you whenever you need my presence, to trust in your love for me and pray it grows stronger every day. I promise to keep no record of wrong, and to remember that our love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures ALL things.
IMG_7025edit  I promise to stand faithfully by your side in this journey called life, to fill your days with sunshine, to comfort you and encourage you, to make you Custard Pie :), to be your best friend and to love you all my life with all my heart, not holding back anything in fear, but moving forward with total abandon, leaping again into the arms of love even though I’m scared at times.IMG_7046
Through this tragedy my love for you has only grown stronger. The Lord has given us a second chance at our beautiful love story, so I come today to give you my heart and my hope for our future together.  I love you more than I ever thought possible, and I promise to never forgot how Jesus gave us Beauty from the Ashes of our lives.
Dale, today I choose forgiveness. I choose you.  I choose us.  I don’t know how to be ME without YOU by my side.  What God has joined together, satan will never separate, because a true love story has no ending, and I’d choose real with you, over a “happily ever after” fairytale…every single time, because I love you!  ……I’m crazy about you.

IMG_7032IMG_7043IMG_7057edit

There were many tears shed during our vows to each other.  In the car, several days later, Avery pipes up: “I cwied during your wedding, Momma.”  Why, honey?  “I don’t know, but they were happy tears.”

  A few days later I got an email from a friend that said, “I don’t know if you were aware of this, but Destiny cried and cried during the ceremony. Swiping at tears that never stopped flowing.  She finally used the bottom of her dress to wipe her eyes.”

  I, of course, immediately went to her to make sure she was ok.  She said, “Yeah, mom, I am fine. I was just so happy that you guys weren’t getting a divorce and that God was healing your marriage.”

Precious.

IMG_7059edit

  And now for the ring ceremony:

   Dale and Tonya’s future is a circle unbroken, much like these rings, with which they renew their pledge to one another in an act of never-ending love, faithfulness and devotion to each other.

Do you, Dale, continue to take Tonya, as your loving wife? Will you continue to love her, honor her, comfort and treasure her, be faithful to her and honest with her, forsaking all others for as long as you both shall live?
{I Do}

IMG_7076edit

Then repeat after me:
Tonya, I give you this ring, as a token of our abiding love and re-commitment to each other. I promise when I look at this ring, to see a new covenant with Christ, and my pledge of faithfulness before God and these witnesses.

IMG_7080
  Do you, Tonya, continue to take Dale, as your loving husband?  Will you continue to love him, honor him, comfort and treasure him, forsaking all others for as long as you both shall live?
{I Do}

IMG_7088

Then repeat after me:
Dale, I give you this ring, as a token of our abiding love and recommitment to each other. I promise when I look at this ring, to see a new covenant with Christ and to remember Beauty from Ashes.

  Our lifetime friends, Lynn and Ann, whom I used to nanny for, came from Oklahoma to sing the duet that they sang at our wedding, “Pour My Love On You” by Phillips, Craig and Dean. 

403420_437452852945789_1341034447_n

During this time, we re-signed our Marriage Covenant, lit our special shattered candle from Joy of Simply Bloom and had a foot washing ceremony.

IMG_7293IMG_7108IMG_7106

IMG_7107

  I was so sad to have to take this down last summer, I am so blessed to have it once again grace the walls of our home.

IMG_7292edit

 IMG_7287edit This candle represents the Lords ability to shine through the shattered pieces of our marriage, creating a beautiful mosaic for HIS glory……

  I was wondering what we were going to do in place of a unity candle, since we were already one.  It was such a cool God-thing, that Joy sent us this just in time for the ceremony!

IMG_7114IMG_7110

  And then, the foot washing. 

 IMG_6302edit

Jesus washed the disciples feet in an act of service to them, showing his servants heart despite their later betrayal of him.  While we washed each others feet, love letters played across the screen:

IMG_7119editIMG_7124editRADIANTIMG_7129

Here is Dales letter to me:

Tonya,
Today, I wash your feet as a symbol of my desire to honor you, care for you and be true to you.  This is a symbol of my commitment to die to self as I seek to love you as Christ loved the church. Today, as you trust your heart to me yet again, I wash your feet as a sign of my desire to serve you, cherish you and remain faithfully yours all the days of our lives.

Love, Me

IMG_7133IMG_7136

IMG_7144

  My dearest Dale,
I am washing your feet because true love forgives.  When Jesus forgave those closest to him, he served them.  He washed their feet.  This act illustrates to you how deeply I forgive you and how much I love you.
This act of servanthood is a token of my undying love for you and my desire to honor you as the head of our home.
I love you more than I thought possible….
~T

IMG_7152IMG_7153IMG_7156editRADIANT

IMG_7290editSIMPLYIMG_7288IMG_7169

After closing in prayer, Dan says:

Dale, you may kiss your bride……………

AGAIN.

IMG_7177editIMG_7183editSIMPLY

Dale got on the mike to thank everyone for coming, and for showing their loving support of us this past year.  Then the kids got to talk too.  🙂

IMG_7191editIMG_7197

  Jamie Grace’s “I Love the Way You Hold Me” cued and down the aisle we went, arm in arm…with the kids walking ahead of us.

IMG_7199IMG_7201edit

  We were a family again, a whole unit before Christ, and all was as it should be.

IMG_7232

God is so good.

  The rest of evening was spent eating, laughing, hugging and talking to the amazing friends that came to show their support.

  I posted those in the next post, because this one is already LOOOONG! 🙂

More to come….

~T

I Do: Part 2 {Worship}

  It was the day before our Vow Renewal, and we were hard at work setting up the barn and making preparations for our big day…..

  I had finally found the “vintage” napkins I wanted. (nothing like waiting until the last-minute) 

IMG_6042

  I had lists in my head a mile long.  This whole “Planning a ceremony while still being a Mom” thing is hard work!  I was SO SO ready to join my life with my husband again, so ready for a standing covenant with Christ.  Beautiful and untarnished.

 IMG_5962IMG_6045

IMG_5978IMG_5976IMG_6035IMG_6054IMG_6070IMG_6074IMG_6079IMG_6083IMG_6088IMG_6094IMG_6100IMG_6102IMG_6103IMG_6106IMG_6112IMG_6130IMG_6131IMG_5982IMG_5862 - Copy

IMG_5876 - Copy

Our friend, Shelby and mentor, Harold were coming out that evening to have praise practice in the barn. They suggested we all worship together, to invite the presence of the Lord to that place.  We jumped at the chance.IMG_5958

It was beautiful.  It was humbling.  It was breathtaking. 

   Harold said it best when he said:

IMG_5987

“Stop those lists running through your head, stop thinking about what needs to still be done…..The Lord is bringing the feast. Our job tonight, is to simply set the table.”

IMG_5957IMG_5986IMG_5990IMG_5995IMG_5997

And so we worshiped with abandon.  Tears streaming down our cheeks as we invited our Heavenly Father into this barn. IMG_5999

This place where we’d celebrate a God who makes all things NEW.

IMG_6000IMG_6007IMG_6006IMG_6009

Table set.

IMG_6115

Bring the feast…..thank you, Father.

~T

After the I Do: Part 2 Vow Renewal

   Don’t be mad.

 I don’t have many photos to share today.  SORRY! I know you are waiting so nicely, but it will be weeks yet before I have the video and photos back from our “I Do: Part 2” Vow Renewal Ceremony.  We can be patient together, ’cause I can hardly STAND it myself, I am SOOO excited to see them!  🙂  I PROMISE, my lovely photographer and videographer are working HARD to get them done, and as soon as I have the disks in hand, I will share with you, but for today, I want to talk blog numbers and blessings, as well as share the few photos I have at my disposal! 🙂

During the first 12 posts of “Surviving Infidelity: Shattered Hearts, Broken Promises” the blog was viewed 34,024 times! (this does not count the Love Story Re-told posts) Reaching as far as Italy, Kenya, Costa Rica, India, Australia, Guam and Poland! Wow, praise God! May it continue to travel the world for HIS glory!

During this series we received hundreds of wonderful comments, and even more private messages and emails.  People are hurting and just need to be told that others are out there surviving the same hurts!

We were blessed with this AMAZING “Shattered” candle-holder from a fellow blogger and sweet friend in Christ, Joy from Simply Bloom, which we used at our Vow Renewal. 

We did this in place of the traditional Unity Candle, since our lives are already one.

 

This hand written note says:

A mosaic Candle-holder so perfectly displays the reflective beauty of a broken life reconstructed. His light bounces off and floods trough the shards of broken, shattered dreams surrendered to His creativity.

   It represented perfectly, our desire to have the Lord shine His light through the broken pieces of our lives, all to create a beautiful mosaic for HIS glory!

  We were also sent several amazing books!  Now that the renewal has passed and “regular” life sets back in, we are anxious to dig into these.

A big thank you to Megan, from The Pearl, for blessing us with the 3 Laaser books: 7 Desires of Every Heart, Shattered Vows & Healing Wounds of Sexual Addiction!

  Our Beauty from Ashes ceremony was everything we dreamed it to be. 

The Bible tells us that “Whoever sows in tears, reaps in joy.” Ps 126:5.  What a joy it was to join my life to Dale’s again, to make a fresh covenant before Christ, and to be wearing a wedding band proudly on my finger once again.

For those of you that live locally, Venables is seriously the place to shop for rings! WOW.  Talk about personal service.  Gina bent over backwards to make our experience a good one.  This included allowing us to pay as we could up to the event and ring pick up, personal phone calls when items came in, custom ordering and quick turn around…she was a dream to work with!  I cannot say enough about Venables!
Send your boyfriend for all your engagement ring shopping needs!  🙂

  In the weeks to come, I will show you some of the things I made for the Renewal, like this Paper Flower Garland, which is pictured here in my bathroom. 

(WHAT?! I needed it to be safe until I took it to the barn for the renewal!)  🙂

And the t-shirt scarves I made for gifts!

    My friend Heather is a photographer, so naturally, she brought her camera to the Vow Renewal and was sharing these on Facebook last night.  I was gobbling them up as fast as she was posting!

She titled this next one: “Everything as it should be.”  I say YES and Praise Jesus!

  Last, but certainly NOT least….here is the slide show we played after the Vow Renewal! 

More soon!  Hugs, T

In Honor of Beauty from Ashes