Lord your forgiveness is the sure and unchanging foundation of my faith. I thank you that you have made it available to me through my faith in your Son.

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Frankly Phyllis

Love is in season, year 'round!

What do weddings, birds and shopping have in common? Answer: They're where a commoner (that would be me) feels the love right now!

You may have noticed that love is in the air. One million people cheered on the Royal Couple in London, from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace, along with an estimated 2 billion more in on the merriment on the web. Fairy tales and royal mania may be the stuff of which souvenirs are made, but there's something both celebrative and solemn about a wedding, and this is the month of many.

The vows are solemn, and the Bishop's homily for Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge focused on that aspect of love. His points about expectations and forgiving are good examples of what love does and is day-to-day, although I was waiting for more "how-to" with that. The how-to is Christ-talk, about what He does for and within us. Couples need reminding that we love because He first loved us and we forgive because He forgives us. It takes a lot of the pressure off of us to know that God gives us His Holy Spirit to work forgiveness in our hearts for others. Christ at the center, the "One in Christ" marriage mystery, encourages every married person watching. As the Bishop said, we are incomplete; Christ is the completer.

It was a lovely day full of promise. It gave me a lift, and I didn't expect it to! I felt the love Wills and Kate (as we chummily called them from the headlines) share and the admiration of many who rejoice with them over that. Now it's down to business for the happy couple, and I don't envy them anything but not having to take out the garbage or scrub the floors. I pray their love for one another and for Christ helps them serve their people in creative and sacrificial ways.

Meanwhile, out my window the green is spectacular and the birds are singing their hearts out. Their warbling must be extraordinary this year because the worms are practically floating to the top - easy pickings with all the rain. It gives me a lift thinking about how God has the birds cheering on spring like people cheer on brides and grooms!

Love doesn't have to be romantic. Case in point: I don't especially love to shop for groceries these days, but when my husband handed me a recipe from the Wall Street Journal for a French spring lamb stew, I was on a mission. I went to a grocery store, Straub's, where the lamb is good. I seldom shop there since there's not one near my home, so they don't know me, but twenty minutes later, I was loving shopping!

Ryan, the meat man for eighteen years, heard me say I needed turnips and there weren't any in produce. While another meat man voluntarily cut up three pounds of lamb into two inch cubes, Ryan fetched turnips "from the back." You get to know people like this while they're helping you. I asked Steve, the Assistant Manager, if he knew what Fleur de Sel was - I needed some for my recipe but didn't know what it was! He wasn't sure either but said he'd check. Then Peter, the "Liquor Guy" (that's how he identified himself) heard my request, pulled out his cell while standing in front of salts and called his mom, a florist on vacation in Florida, about Fleur De Sel. Sure enough, she told him, just as he thought, that it was sea salt. Meanwhile, Steve reported that he was still checking and handed me a printout on Fleur de Sel. I mean, am I in a Disney movie or what with so many personalized helpers?

So there you have it...weddings, birds and shopping....where love is always in season if you look for it!

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