Best Laid Plans

Natasha Moore reflects on her upcoming wedding, COVID cancellations, and learning to accept the fragility of our plans.

So far the weather forecast is holding, the last-minute checklist is shrinking, the RATs are negative. I’m getting married on Saturday!

It’s not what you would really call a Covid wedding – no postponements or government restrictions, thankfully. But the pandemic casts a shadow. Since 2020, it’s become much harder to say things like “we’re getting married August 20” or “this time next week we’ll be on a tropical island” and not hear the echo of uncertainty, the fragility of our plans, however well laid and fervently anticipated.

The last two years have brought home to us all how eminently *cancellable* things are. As a thirty-something introvert, I’d long subscribed to the maxim “the best plans are cancelled plans”. I was disappointed but philosophical about that almost-trip to Rwanda in March 2020, or that I never did make it to Hamilton.

I admit I’m struggling to maintain that cool when it comes to these particular plans. The stark wisdom of the book of James – “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes” – has lodged firmly in my mind since 2020. James counsels us not to “boast in our arrogant schemes” but to acknowledge that “if it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that”. The control is not ours.

There’s something chastening but also healthy about living in uncertainty – and trust. It’s true to reality; also, it helps clarify the important things.

We’re really really really keen for this party and the holiday afterwards. We’re also very clear that at the end of the day, all we need is him, me, and a few witnesses, in the sight of the God who is never cancelled because of Covid.

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