MY WEDDING BUSINESS

I love weddings.

As a young girl, I imagined myself planning weddings. It wasn’t a childhood dream, but it was a dream that made me feel good. I was drawn to the commotion of weddings—the busyness of the day; the elegant bridesmaids surrounding the bride; the clean and neat lines of the groom’s tuxedo; the joyous laughter of the bearers and the flower girls running after each other; the unexpected tears from the mother of the groom while giving her son away; the throng of wedding guests clamoring over the newlyweds—I was enamored by weddings.

In 2013, God blessed me with a small wedding planning business of my own where I got to be in weddings to my heart’s content. It was a dream come true. I styled engagement sessions. I coordinated and planned weddings. All of these I truly enjoyed. Even on low and hard days when stress was at its peak—the florists getting held-up by traffic, the family of the bride running late, the sound system technician cancelling last minute, overseas clients calling suddenly at 2:00 a.m., that “smallness” from attending to every beck and call of my clients—all of these I enjoyed and treasured.

A THREAT TO MY DREAM JOB

But there was one unfortunate incident in 2016 that almost made me change my mind about weddings. This one incident became a pivotal moment in my spiritual life.

On one night in 2016, after coming home from a full day of wedding planning and coordination, I received a phone call from the bride who just got married a few hours ago. “Why would she be calling me at 1:00 a.m.? Shouldn’t she be in bed sleeping the day’s weariness off?” These thoughts were in my head as I reluctantly reached for my buzzing phone and answered her call.

After we talked, I was speechless. I was glued to my bed and couldn’t move, even though I knew I had to do something. In my head, I recalled what the bride just told me–$700 and €200 were missing from her bridal pouch. I mustered my strength and called every wedding supplier who was near the bride during the wedding. I put my detective hat on and investigated to the best of my abilities. But at 3:00 a.m., I was already too drained to move my self-imposed investigation further. I laid on my bed and streams of tears gushed from my eyes. Fatigue, doubt, fear, worry, frustration, and helplessness came over me. I didn’t steal the money, but somehow, I found myself entangled in a web of someone else’s making. There were so many questions in my head. I asked the Lord to reveal who the real culprit was. I asked the Lord to miraculously put the missing amount in the bride’s pouch as if it had never been stolen. I asked the Lord to rescue me, to deliver me. I wanted to save my business, but if it wasn’t the Lord’s plan—I would surrender to His will. These were the last thoughts in my mind when sleep finally won over me. I dozed off and dreamt.

THE DREAM FROM GOD

In my dream, there was a cobra in my hand. I was holding it by its neck. The cobra writhed as if trying to escape my grasp. It hissed at me repeatedly. The cobra drew its head back, opened its mouth to reveal two slender but intimidating fangs, and just before it pushed its head towards my hand, I dropped it on the ground. It attempted to bite me one more time, but I managed to move away.

I woke up just a little after 7:00 a.m. That dream replaced all of my fatigue, doubt, fear, worry, frustration, and helplessness. Instead, I felt the Lord’s peace and security. It didn’t make sense how I knew that God would deliver me and that He would rescue me, but that’s what my faith prodded me to believe in, after that dream.

To cut the long story short, the newlyweds found out who the culprit was. Their money was returned, and I managed to stay in business. To this day, I still remember how the Lord’s grandeur overwhelmed the terror I felt that night. The Lord used that dream to teach me important lessons about business and life.

GOD IS LORD OVER MY BUSINESS

One lesson from this experience was that God is Lord even in business and even in the marketplace. God is Lord in all and in every aspect of society—in family, in church, in school, in the community, and even in the marketplace—He is, always was, and always will be Lord—sovereign and immovable.

As I lay on my bed crying, I settled for saving myself—my integrity and my dignity unscathed. But God managed to maneuver the whole incident around. He did not only replace the money that was stolen, but He also spared my business’ reputation. To top it all off, He preserved the relationship I had with my clients.

There is no separating wall between the spiritual life and the marketplace. The sacred areas of our lives must permeate even the secular areas of our lives. We must bring Jesus with us to our offices and to our schools. We do not leave Him in our homes if we want to make a lasting impact in our society today. The four Gospels attest to Jesus going to the marketplace. His life is a testimony that faith and business can co-exist. Jesus was, after all, a carpenter and a divine God. He is God who sits enthroned over the flood and who sits enthroned forever (Psalm 29: 10). He is God who does whatever He pleases in heaven and on earth (Psalm 135: 6).

GOD IS MY PROTECTOR

Another lesson from this experience was that God protects in all ways and always. His protection wasn’t just for me as he rescued and delivered my reputation. His protection extended even to my business.

One of the things I had to do as I tried to resolve the matter was to go back to the wedding venue to watch the footage from the CCTV cameras. In the footage, it was made clear that I had no knowledge of the theft going on, and that I was nowhere near the area when the incident took place. As I watched the footage, I could have easily been at the wrong place at the wrong time, but I wasn’t. Also, it wasn’t my hectic schedule that kept me from such misfortune; it was the Lord’s hand at work protecting me.

The Lord is inviting us to abandon fear for He, Himself, is with us. He not only walks with us in companionship, but He is with us. He is Immanuel who is God in us (Matthew 1: 23). His presence protects our hearts from being dismayed (Isaiah 41: 10).

GOD SPEAKS THROUGH DREAMS

I still have many lessons from this experience, but the last one I want to share is that God can speak to us even in dreams. He is God who grants us dreams while we are awake and while we are asleep (Acts 2: 17). I had many dreams since then, but I believe that the Lord opened me up to receive dreams from Him through this experience. My dreamscape has since then expanded to dreams about other people, dreams about events, and even dreams about nations. I realized that God is a God who likes to talk, and He loves talking to me, to us. He is that kind of God who shares His plans to people who ask Him (John 15: 15, James 1:5). It is not a matter of one’s ability to talk eloquently to Him, but a matter of one’s availability to listen to Him.

Tonight, as you lie on your bed, I pray that the Lord will speak to you in your dream. I pray that He will reveal Himself as the Dream-Giver and that He will reveal Himself as the Dream-Fulfiller when you wake up.

Amber Lynne Salud serves as one of the senior leaders in Cavite House of Prayer. Her life vision is to see women discover their identity in Christ and to help raise them up as a great host of women who will proclaim Jesus is Lord. She wants to see women take up their role in the Kingdom of God. She is a wedding planner and a blooming writer. On most days, she’s watching her husband, Roy, goof around with their son, David.