My friend and I were looking at Disney’s wedding stuff lately – all the things you can buy and do if you have a wedding at Disney World. Wow! There sure are some beautiful, fantastical ideas there and a LOT of ways to spend gobs and gobs of money. The pictures are glorious. They do look like “fairy tale weddings.”
I was struck as we were looking at all of the wedding venues and pictures of couples who have been married there recently. There are several potential idols that are being very persuasively marketed. I wonder if you can see what they are? If you have a few minutes, please browse through some of the venues and some of the pictures on the blog (although, if looking at wedding planning stuff fuels discontentment or resentment in your heart, then skip it and just keep reading! I’m sure you will probably know the answers anyway).
What is being promoted heavily?
What are they selling to brides?
What priorities are most valued?
What are the priorities of God’s Word and His commands that may not match up with worldly priorities and wedding planning?
Let’s talk about this together – and see if we can see any of the potential pitfalls here. And, to be fair, it is not just Disney that is promoting these kinds of ideas – it is the entire wedding industry. Disney and wedding magazines do not ever intend to say that they are a Christian or godly source of theology, priorities, biblical marriage or ideology. The danger is – if we allow our hearts to be set on Disney or their ideals instead of on Christ, we might subconsciously replace biblical sound doctrine and God’s truth with the things that Disney or the world’s wedding industry promotes and values. We could easily make a worldly wedding into an idol that we cherish more than our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. That is true with anything in this world if we set our hearts on those things instead of Jesus! And if we do that, we are committing serious sin.
The only place we can safely find godly priorities is in God’s Word as we allow His Spirit to lead us, control us and transform our hearts, souls and minds into the image of Christ. We can so easily be led astray if we look to the world or anything or anyone in the world to meet our deepest longings and dreams. Is it possible to have our priorities right and have a Disney wedding without having idols? Yes, it is possible. But we would have to be REALLY careful not to get swept away, in my view. The keys are our own motives, goals and priorities.
These are the kinds of questions I would want to ask myself before planning any type of wedding:
- WHY do we want to do this?
- What is our purpose?
- Why am I getting married?
- What do I hope to gain by being married to this man?
- Am I most excited about being with this particular man, or about the idea of being married and having a wedding?
- Am I expecting this man to fulfill all of my dreams, needs and desires or do I understand that I can only find real contentment and satisfaction in Christ alone?
- Am I seeking God’s will above my own will in this marriage and in this choice of a husband?
- What am I doing to pursue godly femininity and to prepare to be a godly wife?
- What is my/our ultimate goal?
- Where am I looking for our contentment?
- How do I define femininity and marriage and masculinity? And where do my ideas originate?
- What are my expectations? Are they in line with God’s Word, or are they worldly, materialistic or fantastical?
- Am I turning into a control freak or Bridezilla? That is not ok!
- How are we honoring Christ in our decisions about our wedding?
- How are we promoting God’s design for marriage?
- Are there worldly ideas and ideals seeping into our hearts that might contaminate our thoughts, perceptions and ideas about God, marriage or romance?
- Is it possible to allow materialism to overtake my decision making process? If so, how can I protect against that?
- Am I able to differentiate between my wants and my needs as we make wedding decisions?
- Am I resentful if I don’t get my way? How do I react when my husband-to-be doesn’t agree with something I want to do with the wedding? What is my character like when I am told, “No”? Does it reflect Galatians 5:28-21 more or Galatians 5:22-23 more.
- Am I able to stick with our budget? If not, what are my motivations and goals for spending above our budget?
- Do I feel entitled to lavish attention as the bride – is the day “all about me”?
- Do I feel entitled to spend tens of thousands of dollars even if we don’t have the money?
- Am I willing to put us into debt to have the wedding of my dreams?
- Do I care about what my fiancé wants and how he feels? Does he want this type of wedding? Or is it just about what I want?
- Do I care about what my parents’ financial situation is if they are helping us pay for the wedding? Am I careful to be grateful for what they give me and careful not to overspend? Am I making sure not to put my parents into debt for my wedding?
- Am I preparing for the let down after the wedding and honeymoon when life begins to be every day and not as exciting as Disney World (or my personal dream wedding)? What are my expectations after this goal of having a grand wedding is reached? Where will I find my identity and contentment then?
There is no doubt, the pictures and ideas at www.disneyweddings.com are GORGEOUS! The weddings do seem so magical. It is very easy to be completely smitten with the idea of a Disney wedding. And, that is not necessarily wrong. But – let’s go into wedding planning (no matter where we desire to get married) with our eyes wide open as believers in Christ.
Let’s talk about the issues below together, I would love to hear your thoughts!
- What is it that is supposed to bring happiness with a Disney Wedding?
- How is marriage portrayed?
- What expectations does a bride have for herself and how she will be treated during her Disney wedding experience?
- What is the definition of being a “princess” at Disney?
- What expectations does the whole Disney idea promote for brides to have from their husbands?
- Is there really a “Happily Ever After” on earth?
- When is “happily ever after” for believers in Christ?
- What does a Disney wedding do to prepare couples for a godly marriage?
- What expectations of romance, marriage and men do young girls glean from the Disney movies you watched when you were growing up?
- How might God desire us to be good stewards of our mo
ney as we plan our weddings? Is spending $3000 for two hours in a pumpkin carriage a wise investment? Or thousands of dollars on a cake? Or $20,000 – $80,000 for a few hours?
- Where does Christ and the Lordship of Christ fit into this picture?
Much love to each of you!
Thanks for sharing this interesting discussion with me!
If you have time, check out the following post and compare what the Disney Wedding website promotes vs. what was central in this couple’s wedding…