Navy is the New Black…(Part 2 of 2 from Grace-Filled Marriage—The Missing Piece. The Place to Start. by Dr. Tim and Darcy Kimmel)

It’s Wedding Day! Beautiful September weather in the heart of the Bluegrass of Kentucky, found us all readying for our middle son’s wedding. You’d be hard pressed to find any prettier location this time of year…

Kentucky Horse Ranch

It was September 27th. This was going to be Lauren and Gordy’s BEST DAY EVER... We were all about to meet at the reception venue to be “transformed”…

Major project for yours truly. But for this Mom of all boys, a day like today was Heaven on earth.

Lauren and her Mom, Pam, graciously invited me to join the bridesmaids for brunch, make-up and hairdos. The bridesmaids were in their pink, monogrammed robes getting gussied up. Fascinating fun is the only way to describe it.


Once I was literally made over (!!!), I headed back to the hotel where my dear friend, Meredith, awaited. She’d just driven in from Nashville. We walked across the street for a bite to eat.  John was out riding his bicycle and scoping out the Harley store, of all things

We all agreed to meet up around three o’clock to dress and head to the church at four o’clock. As is our predictable routine, we ran late, and started scrambling….

Wedding blunders began:

Only three of four tuxedo studs were in John’s box. Bit of a challenge as we were in Lexington, while perhaps the wayward stud was still in our home in Louisville, seventy-five miles away.

John’s bowtie stubbornly refused to stay on.

Bow Tie With Clipping Path

One hook on my dress was problematic.

My Grandmother’s pearls hung askew.

And you can guess, the blasted clock kept ticking…

John quickly threw on his jacket and off we raced to the church while I hummed, “Just Get Me to the Church on Time….”

tates creek

Once there, Lauren’s wedding coordinator helped secure John’s bowtie, and boutonnieres, bouquets, and bridal party were all in place. Guests were already arriving and before we knew it, we were marching down the aisle…

Will Witherington, one of Gordy and Lauren’s preachers, performed the wedding ceremony. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

Will weeps and trembles over God’s Word. Sincerely. He makes his passion and zeal for the Word contagious. It was a moment in time you desperately wanted to freeze.

Bible With A Burning Candle

(Sidebar: I believe Will is a nicer version of Francis Chan. Hold on, we’ll be taught by Francis next week. Just you wait….)

Four thousand, seven hundred pictures posed for later (Kidding, sorta!!!), John and Meredith and I headed out to the parking lot to go to the Reception. Sun still brightly shining, something made me look over at John.

Group 2

As if a light switch of horrific realization flipped on, I blurted out, “Oh my word! You’re wearing your navy blazer!”

John said, “Oh, no! We’ve got to go back to the hotel and get my tux jacket!!! How in the world did that happen???”

I know now, I should have inspected John before we walked out of the hotel. I was too consumed with my own issues. Go figure.

We have since howled over this, laughing ‘til we cried. Only three people that we know of knew of the mysterious switcheroo. John graciously decided two important facts:

1 – Most people weren’t looking at us, they were focused on Lauren and Gordy. Rightly so.

2 – The navy blazer was already a lifesaver the night before for John Jr. He’d forgotten to bring one and needed it for the Rehearsal Dinner. So, we mustn’t blast the blazer. (LOL)

Thanks to my fashionista friends, I’ve been hearing “Navy is the new black.” Perhaps John was stylin’ and didn’t even know it.

His gracious reaction is a great segue way into finishing up our discussion of Grace Filled Marriage: The Missing Piece, the Place to Start by Dr. Tim Kimmel and his wife Darcy. (If you missed last week’s Part One, please click here.)


Tim says, “In the bigger picture, some points of contention aren’t worth making into a major issue.”

Proverbs 19:11 says:

“Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.” (ESV) John overlooked my overlooking the navy blazer with black tuxedo pants. We call this giving each other a “grace card”.

Part Two of the Kimmel’s book addresses what grace looks like in a marriage. Tim and Darcy give us three things that grace gives us:

“Grace gives you:

         a Secure Love 

                   a Significant Purpose

                             and a Strong Hope…”

As well as two things grace frees us from:

“Grace frees us…

                   …to be Different and Vulnerable

                            …to be Candid and Make Mistakes. “ (Such as our wedding blunder….)

I can’t begin to express the plethora of pearls that are in this book. One of many favorite parts has to do with the freedom to be candid.

Tim says, “Communication is vital to a marriage relationshipA grace-filled spouse wants to communicate clearly and deeply with their mate, but not pummel their heart in the process.”

He goes on to define “candid” as “honesty drenched in grace.”

Playing In The Rain

Don’t you want to be drenched in grace???

Tim reminds us of Paul’s “rules for fighting fair” from Ephesians 4:25-32, especially from verse 29:

Ephesians 4 29

Many times, I know in my heart I shouldn’t say something before I ever say it. Unfortunately my stubbornness sometimes wins out, benefitting no one. And that prayer I should have said, before I blurted out that awful thing, hangs over my head.

If you’re struggling with something in your marriage, pray about it first. In the section on “Maintaining a Climate of Candor”, Tim offers, “God does indeed have an ‘Always Open’ sign. He assumes an approachable posture that is saturated with grace.”

Set of glowing neon OPEN signs. Vector.

Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

Straight from scripture Tim teaches:

God has chosen marriage as his highest example to the world of His creation.

He wanted something that could weather the extreme demands of reckless culture and endure the radical attacks of the forces of evil.

Marriage was his first thought when he made man, and it will mark the final celebration of humankind’s journey when we finally join the Lord Jesus for the grand marriage reception with Jesus in heaven.”

Group pic

(CONGRATULATIONS again, Lauren and Gordy!  What a picture-perfect, blessed Wedding Day you had…)

Then, as if that isn’t enough in Grace-Filled Marriage, Tim issues a supreme challenge to all of us:

God needs the two of you to be a benchmark for His glory.

Your marriage is too important.

You’re too important.

And God’s glory….





Perfect sunrise on the sea, with radiant rays of sun over a warm

If you’d like to hear more on marriage, our ministers, Dave Stone and Kyle Idleman recently preached an excellent, 6-part series on marriage called “Awaken Love.” Kyle recommended Grace-Filled Marriage in the last sermon. Go to:

Amen and amen.

‘Til next time!

(This post is dedicated to one of my long-time friends, Meredith Myers. She’s been burnin’ up I-65 to attend our boys’ weddings. We met in elementary school when we moved in across the street from each other and she’s been a sister I’ve never had ever since. Love you “Madge”!!!)

Eliz and madge


Filed under Book Reviews, Family, Friends, Life Lessons

15 responses to “Navy is the New Black…(Part 2 of 2 from Grace-Filled Marriage—The Missing Piece. The Place to Start. by Dr. Tim and Darcy Kimmel)

  1. Janice Zipfel

    Elizabeth, somehow I came across your blog and have (I hope) all of them saved since June of 2013. Each has encouraged me or stepped on my toes, either are most welcome. This one about the navy jacket incident I hope I remember forever – there are always going to be times we need to be able to extend God’s grace instead of panic or whatever crazy thing we could come up with at a time like this. Thanks!

    • Hey Janice!
      Thanks so much for your kind comments. It’s a boost of encouragement for when I get ready to throw in the towel again….I’m afraid the upcoming post for this week will crunch our toes…get ready! ha
      Big blessings to you,
      Elizabeth =)

  2. Well, I’m just sorry you don’t have any more unmarried sons. These wedding stories are so much fun. I would never have known about the navy in the picture. John blended right in.

    Loved the line, “God assumes an approachable posture saturated in grace.” Oh that we could mimic our Father.

    • Good Morning, Joyce! Always a pleasure to hear from you. I’m w/you, can’t always say I “assume an approachable posture saturated in grace”…sigh…Always the challenge. Kyle Idleman delivered a step-on-your-toes-in-your-face message on Grace yesterday that I’m still trying to digest. OUCH….
      How’s your writing coming?
      Miss you!



  3. Jane Chilton

    Thank goodness navy is the new black….I never noticed John had the wrong jacket!!! Thank you for the encouraging & YES, challenging insights:

    God has chosen marriage as his highest example to the world of His creation.

    Candid: honesty drenched in grace! (Oh to always be that woman!!)

    As always dear one, I’ve heard from our gracious Lord they you!

  4. Meredith Myers

    Such an honor to attend the Hoagland boys’ weddings, not to mention YOUR wedding a ‘few’ years back! Since I only have brothers, you are also the sister I never had! Love you too! XXOO Meredith (a/k/a Madge)

    • Seems we’ve struck a funny bone on this one! We must plan another rendez-vous where we can RELAX and not run around wildly for this or that!!!??? You’ve been my right arm at all the weddings! YOU need a break now!!! ha Have a STELLAR weekend. We thought of you last night while watching the CMA’s…. Miss & love you tons,
      “Dor” =)

  5. Nancy Aguiar

    Holy Hilarity in the Highest! Haaaaaaaaa!!!! Great lessons, as usual, Elizabeth! Saturated…

  6. Deborah Claypool

    The navy blazer story is too funny. I am sure this will be a story passed down through your family for many generations. Don’t you love that? I am ordering the book for sure. I have a list about a half mile long to call into my favorite little Book Nook.

    • Hey there! Only crazy us….I’m wanting to call your guy too to order a list as well. Anybody wondering what we’re talking about…if you’re in Louisville, checkout the Christian Book Nook in Germantown. Call John @ (502) 637-8881 and he’ll get you the book you’re in “need” of!!!

      Hugs over to you, Deborah! Miss you. Fun hearing Rob Morgan last week, huh?

  7. deboracoty

    Loved the wedding story and gorgeous pics, Elizabeth!

    • Good Morning, Debora!!! Wish I were in FL to come to your book signing!!! Need to order some of your books! I’ll email you also w/some potential recipes for your new project AFTER our houseguests leave. Have two sets rolling in today. Praying they don’t wear white gloves….
      Love from Louisville,