I recently learned that many young ladies are choosing to walk themselves down the aisle at their weddings. I was told the old tradition of a father walking his daughter down the aisle is being left behind for two reasons:
1. Because having a dad there takes some of the attention away from the bride on her special day.
2. Because young ladies don’t like the idea of being traded like property–having a father hand her off to her husband.
The concept of being given away in marriage can be traced back to the Bible.
In Luke 20:34-35 Jesus speaks in terms of being given in marriage. “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage. But those who are counted worthy to attain that age, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage;
In Jeremiah 29:6 it speaks of giving your daughters to husbands: “Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters.”
Sadly, many young ladies have already given so much of themselves away in fornication and premarital sex, that the father has very little to give away. Her heart and her body have already been given away–often to many young men in the course of her dating years.
It is my prayer that my relationship with my daughter is such that she WANTS me to walk her down the aisle. As her father I view it my job to protect her heart and help her get to heaven, until I hand her off at her wedding to someone who will take over my job! She knows I don’t think of her in terms of property. I think of her as a beautiful soul and a daughter of the King!
And if my daughter is so concerned that my presence by her side might take away from people looking at her on her “special day” then I have failed as a father. If she is that self-absorbed and that self-centered then I haven’t raised a daughter of the King–I’ve raised a spoiled brat.
Also, if she doesn’t like the idea of being under the authority of her father who hands her off to be under the authority of a husband, then I suspect she will have a large problem with God’s command to be submissive. Her problem is not with a wedding tradition, but rather, her problem is with God.
If she really requires that much attention walking down the aisle then what is going to happen the next morning when the flowers are gone, the makeup has worn off, and the crowd has gone about the normal walks of life? Rather than having a daughter hyper-focused on whether she gets to walk down the aisle by herself, I want to help my daughter comprehend the meaning of marriage and the real commitment it requires.
A wedding is one day. Marriage is for life.