The great exchange between man and wife is rooted in the love Jesus has for His church. When we accept the love of Jesus, we become His beloved.
I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine… Song of Solomon 6:3
We have watched Victoria and Spencer in their first year of marriage live out the great exchange! Spencer protects, provides, and loves deeply. Victoria has become a woman of grace and beauty as wife and soon to be mother. She is preparing a home and a haven for her family through the power and strength of Christ, and the daily example within in her husband.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. 11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Ephesians 4: 9-12
Today, if you’ve been married one year or 50 plus years, take the time to reflect on the positive. What has your marriage, the union, provided that only two can accomplish? As an individual within a marriage, we can often resort to the “What about me?” cycle of thoughts and actions. Take the time to say, “What about us?” and thank God for the great exchange!
Where do you start in your thoughts and soul to even begin writing about your daughter’s wedding day? Do you start from the first time you realize you were pregnant with a beautiful daughter to love, or maybe the first conversation as a little girl dreaming about her wedding day, or maybe you start……I just don’t know, but here it goes.
My dearest Victoria,
I’ve told many people you had a “story book wedding”! The story began long ago when God “fearfully and wonderfully” created you inside your mother’s womb. From that moment, and even before time began, God has created and woven you into a beautiful lady of His grace and love.
I remember your dress up days–pretending to be a pink Power Ranger, a princess, and yes, even a bride.
Most moms look at their little girls all dressed up and, for a moment, wonder who will be the blessed man to hold the hand of their child. The moment is fleeting because there is much to do as a mom during the course of the day. Time flies by and the moments turn into reality when you see your daughter dating.
Your father and I have prayed earnestly for the man who would ask you to marry him, and we earnestly prayed for you to become a Godly woman–someone who a Godly man would be attracted to because of her strong character. I remember studying the book of Ruth and praying, “God create a Ruth character in my daughter, and send a Boaz to marry her.”
Your dad and I were proud of Spencer and all the wonderful promises and covenant he shared with us prior to your engagement. We rejoiced in the opportunity for us to bless the union and pray over you as a couple.
Your engagement occurred during an interesting time. I remember the day Spencer had planned the surprise engagement. He had the most incredible day planned for you! I must confess I was hard pressed not to follow him, so luckily I had a work session with my capstone group with VCU.
Later that day, our family occupied our minds and contained our excitement by going out to dinner!
You happened to call during our time out, and we rejoiced with you! We saw the marriage trolley pass by, and we smiled! That launched the creativity! What will Victoria and Spencer plan for THEIR wedding?!
The year-long planning was a joyful experience of crafts, discussions, parties, dinners, connecting with new friends and family, and understanding the purpose of a wedding–a God story and covenant.
I remember sitting around the table looking at my wedding album with you and suggesting that you consider wearing my veil. What a glorious moment watching you try it on.
I believe the song you chose to walk down the aisle to, Love Never Fails, was the theme of our time planning the wedding and the ultimate wedding day!
Love will sustain, love will provide Love will not cease at the end of time And love will protect, love always hopes And love still believes when you don’t
Love is the arms that are holding you Love never fails you
Friends and family gathered around to love and support us. They gave of time, money, talent, and resources to create a memory of a lifetime. From every hair pin placed, hairspray and make up applied, picture taken, grooms men organized, food ordered or cooked, crafts created, flowers adorned, prayer spoken, words of encouragement given, anxiety melt-down expressed and forgiven, tears of joy displayed, hug received, joyful laughter shouted, card written, gift purchased, heirlooms bestowed, vows spoken, pastor preaching, rings exchanged, wedding dress chosen, lavender buds smelled and specifically placed, colors chosen, car decorated, house cleaned, back and hands used to set up, clean up, and run errands, phone calls made, cake picked up and cut, bodies joined dancing to music, wink of an eye, knowing look, scripture spoken, sweat running down, music played at just the right time, song sang, video taken, and promises made–May 31, 2015 came together in a culmination of a continuous symphony and harmonious acts of love, grace, generosity, and JOY!
I will treasure in my heart for a lifetime walking down the aisle not as the bride but as your mother. We’ve come full circle my sweet girl. Walking down to sit alone on the pew and awaiting you and the love of my life to walk you down to the man of your dreams was a joy and mixed emotions I had never known. Having my daddy right behind me along with my mom and your dad’s family gave me the strength to let you go. I saw my daddy and cried. He hugged me, and reminded me how much he loved me. We may let go Victoria, but we never leave. I’m always here. And, like my daddy said, “I got your back.” Crying again…..
Thank you Adam for your strong-arm of love. Just prior to organizing our line, Melinda Clapp was there to laugh and get me into the shade. Christian sisters supporting….loving…laughing…being real….
Praying with your Woman of Worth sisters (bridesmaids) and sisters before the wedding, invited us into the loving Spirit that surrounded the place. Jesus was already there for we had prayed long ago for this day–we only needed to be still and talk to Him. Oh, Victoria, He is so faithful and full of grace. Amazing grace.
The morning of and getting ready was truly special. Sweet little hands fixing hair and makeup, laughter, and encouragement. Elmo taught us to belly breath if we got too overwhelmed.
I loved hearing all the comments as the girls reflected on the pictures in the photo album. “That’s the date of my baptism!”, as Christi looked at her baptism picture from Shalom Baptist Church. Memories…..sweet memories….that bind us together….
One of my favorite moments in a wedding is watching the groom glow at the first look at his bride. I was so busy watching you, I almost forgot to look. When I looked, I saw the most incredible expression of endearment, love, and awe in the eyes of Spencer. I knew in that moment just how much he adores you, Victoria.
Seeing your bridesmaids, groomsmen, and little flower girls gathered around you and Spencer was a circle of love and the beauty of Christ’s love.
I don’t know how I’m writing this to you without constantly tearing up. Your father just walked in and said, “You have the cutest smile on your face.” It’s God’s joy all coming out of me, and I would give anything to relive that day with you. This is my humble attempt at recreating the day and never forgetting.
I can’t imagine your day without Pop and Kaye Vickers. Pop speaks from the heart and loves Jesus so much, Victoria. He loves you and Spencer. That love was evident from the moment he opened his mouth, and so many people shared how the message motivated them to remember their marriage promises. There’s Melinda and Larry Clapp in the background!
Your daddy shared amazing and deep soul aches–good aches. With tears in his eyes later that night, he shared with me, “I felt safe walking with Victoria–God comforted me, and I knew it was all going to be good. I felt safe, and I just kept telling her how much I loved her.”
It’s as if you were just born, Victoria! Your daddy has shown “the best selfie ever” to anyone–even strangers. He is so proud of you and Spencer.
Victoria, many years ago, my daddy lifted my veil, kissed my cheek, and “let go”. Do you realize how truly special it is to see that same veil be lifted by the man God gave to me–your father? The opportunity to share one of our favorite scriptural love songs, and then for you to ask us to sing was truly an honor. You ARE sealed to Spencer! Your marriage is a covenant that was not entered into lightly. Your can create a marriage of passion with God’s help! Put Him first in ALL things!
Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame. Song of Solomon 8:6
I reflect on the duet and remember how overwhelmed with emotion I was, and how God entered in and gave me the courage to sing louder and stronger–
Set me as a seal on your heart / Set me as a seal on your soul / For strong as death is love, unyielding as the grave / Nothing will quench its flame, nothing will quench it flame.
Marriage can overwhelm you, Victoria, and when it does, pray for Jesus to give you strength and courage to sing and rejoice in the man who God has given you to love. I’m not just talking about toothpaste caps and toilet seats. I’m talking about the really hard times when you have failed him, or he has failed you, and the grace that was spilled out at the cross has already covered that sin.
NOTHING…..will or should quench its flame….
It’s little things you did in the wedding ceremony that made the day special, Victoria. Sandy said, “No stone unturned!”. This expression from a best friend brings me joy. You and Spencer are amazing. The same commitment to your wedding day pales in comparison to your commitment to each other and marriage. Remember that the little things add up and create beauty. Little notes, flowers, a hug, an encouraging word or smile….they make a marriage sweeter.
The first kiss as man and wife…
Walking down the aisle together (without your daddy)! See Sandy smiling ear to ear?!
As we ushered into the party of a lifetime, the joy I saw on your faces captivated me…
Mr. and Mrs. Lamb! Let’s celebrate!
I like this picture because you can see Harvey in the background video taping with Ben, and friends along with Linda, Lori and Levin. Lori has the most amazing picture of sun rays shinning down on the wedding party! She said it just seemed to appear — the glory of angels! We have to get that picture from her!
So, I don’t have all the pictures of us dancing the night away by the light of the moon! What joy to dance, giggle, and practice our dance moves from the lessons we took prior to the wedding! I enjoyed dancing with the other couples that went to the dance lessons with us (Christi and Steven) and of course my main man–Parish.
The cake! Do I need to say more? Thank you Paul and Karen for “the cake!”. If you want to know more to that story just ask!
I love a man who takes sweet advantage of a joyful moment! Here is a foreshadowing from Spencer to make memorable occasions filled with laughter and surprises! He got you Victoria!
Thank you Uncle Eugene for the lamb cake topper! We just added a veil and bow tie and voila!– a cake topper for the two Lambs in love! 🙂
Every bit of cake was gobbled up! Thank you Paul May and Karen May for your love and generosity!
I don’t have a picture, Victoria, but Papa and Grandma danced. And, after their dance, I grabbed my daddy and danced with him. My daddy and me….dancing….
Addendum: Someone took pictures of me dancing with my daddy and sent these after this post! I love you daddy…my mama is watching in the back ground with love in her eyes…
Grandparents are a treasure and they love unconditionally. We are so blessed to have their constant love. I want you to remember this….. Papa was asked if he could walk down the aisle and it was suggested they be seated, and the women walk with a groomsman. Papa said, “I can walk!” and Morris agreed. “We will walk down the aisle in honor of this marriage.” Don’t ever forget that Victoria–they took a stand for you and Spencer.
Grandma’s hands cleaned, nurtured, and created for your special day. A grandmother’s love is to be honored and treasured for a lifetime.
Also, Victoria, listening to Drew’s toast and the love of Tyra was evident that you’ve made a difference in their lives, and they love you beyond measure.
“Long before this day, I considered you a sister!” …”Your red hair….great day!” “Spencer you are more than a best friend–I truly love you….you are my brother…”
And sweet Vivian……
“No words can describe my relationship with Victoria…..I borrowed her clothes…she helped me through my weird middle school …my best friend…she always knows what to say….I love your WOW sisters….Spencer….when I first met you….over time…we have a good relationship and you make me laugh. I’m so happy for you.”
So many people surrounding your marriage to cheer you on and cover you with prayers! We are truly blessed Victoria. As you grow older the blessing of family and friends will grow sweeter over time, and you will realize the immense blessing we have in the love of those who gathered around you and our families that day.
Even precious Nana came to honor you.
She was my Mistress of Ceremonies!
I love you Victoria! I will never forget your story book wedding and the joyful time that was had by all! As, I close out this post, your daddy is singing Set Me As A Seal, and I am humming along. I’m smiling that cute smile, tearing up, and remembering how beautiful God has made this world. We need only to embrace the beauty and take the time to create beauty in the lives of others. Thank you for creating that beauty in my life…..
“How beautiful you are my darling….” (Set Me As Seal)
And, please remember….
Stay close little girl…
Wedding Resources We Recommend
Clay Hill Garden Events for the Venue. Debbie is down to earth, works with you, and has the most beautiful landscape! Perfect location!
Dance Lessons for the wedding day: Rigby’s Jig. We had a BLAST and truly learned how to dance in a short amount of time. I recommend going as a group if you can. We recommend Nicole Libby as an instructor.
Thank you to my brother for an amazing video and sound set up for the outdoor wedding. For more information on his services, please message me! He has state of the art equipment including a drone device to capture aerial video.
For consultation on unique crafts and personalized details for your wedding please message me.
Many years ago a mom and dad sat in a doctor’s office watching the heartbeat of their soon to be baby girl. Her tiny body seemed to be announcing, “I am here!”, like the town of Whoville with Horton.
From the point of her announcement through modern technology, until this very moment, Victoria Louise has been a precious joy in our lives. Having children changes you. It’s no longer “just us” but a soul to care for and a life to nurture.
So the adventure began! I remember you walking on your first birthday in our trailer by the river in Gloucester, VA. You had a pretty white dress on, and you were all smiles–“Look at me! I can walk!”
Life was an adventure with you as we traveled with your daddy during his time of management with Peeble’s Department Store. We would spend the day in Nashville, enjoy the rides at Carowind’s Amusement Park, make crafts, or just hang out watching The Land Before Time.
Like all little girls, you grew up and each season of your life–elementary, middle, and high school brought even more adventures with plays, singing, mission trips, friendships, and fun! Moms can flash back in their minds and play a movie of the journey with a thousand pictures coming forth. I am overwhelmed with joy!
So, here we are–A Wedding Day!
I think of your wedding day and how beautiful it is to see your Woman of Worth sisters surround you with love and guidance. What a gift that is boundless!
I think of our family who sat in the waiting room to see your face for the first time and all the years of cheering you on in sports, plays, and vocal contests. Every birthday, event, and transition in your life through graduations and moving out on your own–friends and family have been there to see you through and cheer you on.
This weekend your mom and dad will walk beside you as you “leave and cleave” to the one God has chosen for you. This covenant relationship will be sealed and presented to God. Family and friends will gather to offer their blessings.
This is it Victoria. This is the day the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it! You will be Mrs. Lamb. A wife. You will build your home with Mr. Lamb. So from the day of your announcement, “I am here!”, God has blessed us with unspeakable joy! This joy will be carried forth into your God story with Spencer. God is good and faithful. I am a blessed woman of God to have experienced this journey with you–my sweet Victoria Louise.
Thank you Victoria! I’ve enjoyed every minute, and I look forward to the coming years as you and Spencer build your home.
This weekend is the weekend before the big day–the wedding. This weekend has been filled with last-minute flower shopping, just the right earrings for her and her sisters, rehearsal dinner dresses, shoes, haircuts, and an “at home” spa night with classic wedding movies!
…and a daddy who wanted to make Martha Stewart’s giant meatballs. Yuummmmmmmmmmm. The abundance of the meal reminded me of the blessings we have and the great joy and anticipation of the wedding day! Celebrate! Enjoy!
The greatest joy was finding just the right thing in unique shops on Cary Street.
We love finding that special book, item, or card. My little girl found the sweetest book on how ideas can ultimately change the world–believe and follow your dreams! We read that together with great anticipation of our future and God’s will for our lives.
We also read funny quotes on cards and laughed.
To end the day with a loving meal was a reminder of the best place — home, and the good things we create when we are willing to share of our gifts are treasured. Thank you to my husband for filling our home with the sweet aromas of his love and gift of cooking.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Lightly brush a rimmed baking sheet with oil; set aside.
Place bread in a bowl and add milk to moisten. Chop bread into small pieces no larger than 1/4-inch and place in a large bowl. Add veal, beef, pork, egg, onion, parsley, oregano, cheeses, salt, and pepper. Using your hands, gently mix until well combined.
Divide the mixture into 8 equal portions and roll each portion into a large meatball. Transfer meatballs to prepared baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20minutes.
Meanwhile, bring the marinara sauce to a simmer in a large saucepan. Transfer the meatballs to the marinara sauce and simmer, partially covered, until cooked through, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano.
One of my oldest daughter’s teachers from elementary school took the time to encourage her and our family through this post on Facebook. The comments that continued were equally a blessing and an unexpected joy!
“When the heart overflows, it comes out the eyes. God is good like that; He doesn’t want our chests to bust!”
“The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had no tears!”
We had just been uplifted at a bridal shower for her upcoming wedding in May.
Bountiful blessings through laughter, food, and gifts were bestowed on her. Later that day we were equally blessed to visit my Aunt Polly who reminded us that she was a great listener, because we were great talkers!
Grandma and Papa gave Victoria her wedding day jewelry–necklace and earrings from Papa to his wife for their 50th Wedding Anniversary many years ago.
It’s the every day, seemingly small things, in connecting with those around us that make the difference. They all add up to a beautiful and meaningful life filled with joy. The grand moments–the miracles–are wonderfully amazing; however, one can get lost in the miracle of the everyday dandelion or daisy.
We are so grateful to those who take the time, the energy, and the love to support and connect with us. We love you! You are a daisy to us!
One can get just as much exultation in losing oneself in a little thing as in a big thing. It is nice to think how one can be recklessly lost in a daisy. Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Thanks to generous friends, Victoria received a kitchen aid mixer/food processor! Between my love for cooking shows (especially Martha Stewart) and her new processor, we had some FUN in the kitchen! Enjoy this fabulous recipe by Martha Stewart!
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup boiling water
1 cup sour cream
3 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups mini chocolate chips
1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces chopped semi sweet chocolate
Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 12-cup nonstick bundt pan with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk boiling water into cocoa powder until smooth; whisk in sour cream. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated.
Then beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with 2 additions of cocoa mixture and beat until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
2. Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake until tops springs back when lightly touched, 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack set over a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Let cool 15 minutes, then turn our onto rack and let cool completely.
3. Bring cream to a boil in a medium pot. Add chocolate and let stand 5 minutes. Add salt and stir until smooth. Let stand 10 minutes, then pour over cake allowing the glaze to drip down sides and cover cake. Let set 3 hours at room temperature or 1 hour in refrigerator.
On Martha Bakes, after spraying the pan with nonstick cooking spray Martha dusted it with cocoa. And in place of the glaze, Martha dusted the finished cake with confectioner’s sugar.
According to Gary Chapman’s, The Five Love Languages, we all have a love language that we practice and desire to receive. We love to be loved either through words of affirmation, acts of service, receiving gifts, quality time, and/or physical touch. The love languages are for any relationship–parent/child, marriage, friendships, and co-workers. Most of us have a favorite with a close second.
Here is Mr. Chapman’s website in which you can take the love language test as an individual, as a couple, or with your children.
Yesterday, IN ABUNDANCE, all five love languages were poured into my home for my oldest daughter’s bridal shower. My family was deeply overwhelmed by the generosity of family and friends. When I was a young girl, I had an amazing mentor, Inez McKay, who died from cancer when I was in my thirties. I will always remember attending her funeral and reading the Woman of Worth poem in her program. I read that poem as a woman struggling with my worth, and Inez, even in her death, mentored me. Imagine your funeral. What legacy would your family put inside the program? If you pre-planned your funeral, what would you want written?
Not only did Inez, my mother’s best friend, find the time to love on an awkward teenage girl, but she left a legacy–YOU ARE A WOMAN OF WORTH! So, from the work of the Holy Spirit, Woman of Worth Mentoring Ministries was born.
What a gift to find myself 49 years old, over 19 years later, with “little women”–beautiful, joyful, courageous women of God, sharing in the love of Jesus together and with each other.
Not only did they show up and work, but they added special details that announced you matter to me.
Pictures of over 7 years of dating, quotes from Spencer to Victoria, hand-made crafts from Samantha, flowers, …..
The food was like a feast that, for me, was so divine, I thought I was at The Wedding Feast! It was the love of friends and family pitching in and bringing food to share.
The first cell message of the morning was from Krista telling me to breathe and enjoy the journey. The first knock on my door was Sandy who came early to create a beautiful prayer calendar and assemble Samantha’s guest goodie bags. Her confident and fresh personality added just the positive energy we needed. Her laughter and love for my girls affirmed and hugged on this mother of the bride.
Melinda’s prayer and blessing……
Karen’s unbelievable words of affirmation over my life ……
Annie and Kaye’s constant love…..
The love of grandmothers….
Nursing buddies who remain faithful…
Sisters who give and support each other….
My life is full of blessings! The love poured into our home is still felt this morning as I sit in the quiet…..
I want to close out this post thanking someone who shows his love in abundance everyday–day in and day out. I looked through my shower pictures and not a single picture of him was taken. That’s his style. He cleaned, mopped, vacuumed, baked four loaves of lavender bread, ate at a table with a bunch of feisty women, and later on that day went prom dress shopping with his beautiful 16-year-old.
Parish, who would have thought over 26 years ago, you and I would be here? Yesterday was a reminder that God is faithful, and we have family and friends that have mentored us, supported us, and because of them, we are blessed.
Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God.