Welcome to the Whyte House Family Spoken Novels podcast episode #81. Today we are reading chapter 26 of the novel “…And Family Drama Just Won’t Stop II” by Daniel Whyte III with Meriqua Whyte.
“Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” – (Genesis 2:24)
The final two months until the wedding were very busy ones for the Reynolds and the Montague families—especially for the women who did most of the preparation for the wedding. Everyone was eagerly anticipating a glorious ceremony and prayers were offered up for good weather as the mothers took Monica, along with Stacy, Leah, Janice, Sister Herron, and Tiffany shopping for wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses. Monica tried on so many dresses she lost count; even Stacy, Janice and Leah tried on one dress each as they dreamed of their own wedding day.
“They’re all so beautiful; it’s hard to choose,” Monica said. “I wish I could wear them all.” She finally settled on one by Vera Wang with a four yard train. The end of the train had a single row of lilac flowers spanning about two feet. They ended up ordering the bridesmaid dresses and the dress for the flower girl online.
“You’re going to look beautiful,” Janice and Stacy said. Monica noticed Leah was quieter than normal; she became more reserved as the wedding date drew closer.
“What do you think, Leah?” Monica asked.
“It’s nice, very nice,” Leah said blinking real hard. Sister Montague gave Leah a hug. She knew this was a difficult time for Leah who had expected that she would be married at least a few years before her younger sister.
The mothers employed the services of Weddings by Antonia Rose to help them put together the special day. Two weeks before the wedding, family members began arriving. It was a happy time and although it was getting harder for Jonathan and Monica to spend some moments together alone, they managed to spend a few hours on the phone late at nights after everyone was asleep. After meeting her family members from the Caribbean, Jonathan said, “I know where we will be spending our honeymoon–St. Kitts. I just love your cousins’ accent.”
A week before the wedding, Monica had her bridal shower at the Reynolds’ home. Sister Reynolds, Sister Bettie, Sister Mills, Sister Richardson and other ladies all shared comical experiences they had being a wife and mother. This helped relieve some of the nervousness Monica was beginning to experience as the wedding day drew closer.
“I know you feel overwhelmed,” her mother said to her, “but just take it one day at a time and pray for wisdom as you go through each day.”
There were other surprises along the way. Stacy’s fiance, Robert, came down to visit and decided to stay for the wedding. Jonathan located his college friend, Kirby Rollins, who was thrilled to be the best man. “You had me fooled, my brother,” he said. “You have what it takes to secure a wife and a beautiful one at that. Let’s not lose contact with each other any more. I have big plans I want to share with you after you return from your honeymoon and get settled in.”
On the Tuesday before the wedding, Monica crashed into her bed exhausted. Even though she had taken off the week from her job to get rested, she was busier than ever. “This is your last day helping,” her mother told her. “You’ll be drained on your wedding day.” Leah had given up her room to their two cousins and was bunking with Monica on the hide-away bed that slid neatly beside Monica’s bed to make a double bed.
“Leah,” Monica said softly, “are you alright? I noticed you’ve been extremely quiet lately.”
“Yes, I’m alright,” Leah said flatly.
“You don’t sound like it.”
“Okay, I am not alright,” Leah sighed. “I guess I am a little jealous. I can’t seem to get over the fact that you are getting married before me. If things had worked out between me and Xavier, I would be getting married. Don’t get me wrong; I am very happy for you and I wish you the best. I just wish it was me first.”
“I am so sorry,” Monica said reaching over to hug her.
“No need to be sorry,” Leah said then added with a chuckle, “You do know Leah got married before Rachel, don’t you?”
Monica joined in her chuckle. “Only I am not Rachel. I love you, Leah.”
“And, I’m happy for you, Monica. I hope I can get over these weird feelings before it’s time for you to walk down the aisle. I’m sure you will want your maid-of-honor to be wearing a big smile.”
“Of course,” said Monica. “I know you can pull it off.”
Saturday could not come any sooner. Monica and her bridesmaids used the Montagues home as their dressing parlour. Brother Montague was dressed and ready to go by 11:30 a.m. The wedding was scheduled to begin at 2:00. He paced the floor glancing at his watch every so often. Why do women take so long to get dressed, he thought, and where is Mrs. Duval? He wanted to take some pictures at the house before they left and…
“Terrence, is she here yet?” his wife called from upstairs.
Before he could answer, the doorbell rang. “I’ll get it,” he said hurrying to the door. “Thank God you’re here,” he said to Mrs. Duval, the Mary Kay representative who was hired to help Monica and the other ladies with their makeup and hair styles.
“She’s here,” Brother Montague shouted as he directed her upstairs to the master bedroom. He still could not believe he would be walking down the church aisle that afternoon to give his baby daughter in marriage. He passed the time reminiscing about the wonderful years they had spent together.
“Close your eyes!” his wife said half an hour later bringing him back to reality as she descended the stairs. Monica and her bridesmaids came and stood on the stairs one behind the other. Brother Montague’s mouth fell open when he saw his beautiful daughter before him.
“Tell me I am not dreaming,” he said as he approached her. “You look beautiful, Monica. Jonathan is going to be stunned.” Glancing at all of them, he said, “You all look so beautiful.”
Monica, who was on the lowest stair, smiled at her father as he stretched out his arm to her. “Just want to remind you, Monica, to remember all your mother and I have shared with you down through the years. Above all, be a godly, virtuous woman.”
“Is that a tear I see falling, Dad?” Monica said softly.
“Grown men don’t cry,” Brother Montague said clearing his throat and pushing his chest out while blinking hard.
“That is a tear,” Monica said reaching up to wipe it away. “I love you, Dad, and I’ll remember all you’ve taught me.”
“I love you, too,” he said giving her a hug. “I wanted to take a few pictures myself. You all know what it’s going to be like after the wedding.”
While they were in the middle of their photo shoot, there was a firm knock on the door. Brother Montague answered the door.
“Okay, everyone, let’s go!” he said.
Monica stepped out the door. A shiny limousine was parked on the side of the road.
“You’ve always wanted to ride in a limousine,” her Dad said taking her by the arm. “Mrs. Duval, you ride with us.”
Jonathan and his groomsmen had not started getting ready as early, but they were at the church before the ladies and were waiting in the lounge just outside the church offices.
“Do you have the ring?” Jonathan asked Kirby who was serving as his best man.
“My brother, have no fear. In my pocket, it’s right here,” Kirby said retrieving the ring from his front pocket.
Pastor Richardson beamed as a proud grandfather. He and Jonathan’s father, the assistant pastor, Brother Reynolds, shared some funny father/husband stories to set everyone, especially Jonathan, at ease.
Brother Harold stuck his head in the door. “They’re here,” he announced to Pastor Richardson. Brother Harold was serving as one of the ushers and looked mighty sharp in his three piece black suit offset by a gold chain hanging from his tie pin. Sister Mills beamed with pride as she remembered their wedding day. “You and Bettie look gorgeous in your new dresses,” Brother Harold complimented them. “Don’t go spoiling this day with your gossiping.”
As Pastor Richardson called the guests to order, Jonathan and his groomsmen filed out of the lounge looking very distinguished in their black tuxedos offset with lilac colored handkerchiefs barely visible above the top of their jacket pocket. Jonathan had never looked better as he stood at almost six feet tall.
“Do you mind if I take a look at your bride before you do?” Kirby whispered.
“Don’t you dare,” Jonathan said in a low tone.
Jonathan could not wait to see Monica after seeing how beautiful the maid-of-honor and the bridesmaids were dressed. They looked like they had stepped out of a fashion magazine.
Tiffany wore a captivating smile as she marched slowly down the aisle with steady steps sprinkling flower petals along the way. She even tossed some out onto the guests.
The pianist began to play “Here Comes the Bride” as the front doors to the auditorium swung open. With one hand on her father’s arm, Monica glided down the aisle, her train flowing behind her in a majestic manner. Leah, the maid-of-honor, walked just behind and to the right of Monica, holding the bride’s bouquet. She wore a huge smile.
Wow, thought Jonathan as he took in the beautiful sight. People across the auditorium oohed and aahed.
Monica was proud to see her man standing tall, ready to receive her; she hardly noticed how beautifully decorated the church was. Pastor Richardson’s voice seemed distant. She only had eyes for her Jonathan.
“Who gives this woman to be married to this man?” Pastor Richardson asked.
“We do,” Brother and Sister Montague answered.
“If there is anyone here who sees any reason why these two, Jonathan Reynolds and Monica Montague, should not be joined in holy matrimony speak now or forever hold your peace,” Pastor Richardson continued.
Jonathan, not realizing he was holding his breath, breathed a sigh of relief when no one answered.
“Brother Montague, you may now give your daughter to the groom.”
Brother Montague kissed his daughter on the cheek and hurried to join his wife in the second pew.
Jonathan took a long look at his bride as she stepped into position across from him.
Pastor Richardson continued with the ceremony.
“Do you, Jonathan Reynolds, take this young lady, Monica Montague, to be your lawful wedded wife, to love, to honour, to uphold, in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, for better or for worse, and to remain faithful to her until death do you part?”
“I do,” Jonathan answered seriously.
“Do you, Monica Montague, take this young man, Jonathan Reynolds, to be your lawful wedded husband, to obey, to love, to honour, to uphold, in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, for better or for worse, and to remain faithful to him until death do you part?”
“I do,” Monica answered.
As Kirby handed the bride’s ring to Jonathan and Leah handed the groom’s ring to Monica, Pastor Richardson prayed over the couple. “You may now place the rings on each other’s fingers,” he said.
As the gold and silver bands slipped onto the bride’s and groom’s fingers, Pastor Richardson said, “What God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. You may now kiss the bride.”
Amens and loud cheers went up all over the auditorium.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I now present to you, Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Reynolds. Receive them with joy, love, and open arms.”
Thank you for joining us for this episode of Whyte House Family stories. You may purchase a copy of this novel and any other Christian fiction books read on this podcast from Amazon.com.
Now, dear listener, please know that God—the divine Author of all things—wants to write a great story with your life as well. But first you must give Him the pen by trusting Him with the life He gave you and surrendering your heart to Jesus Christ as Savior. Here is how:
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
May God bless you until next time.