I just started watching the movie “Corpse Bride,” which I heard about at a retreat this past weekend. The movie is about a bride who is literally a corpse, dead, even though she still has a certain sort of beauty to her. This bride has to marry a groom, but the catch is: he is alive while she is not. Anyway [Spoiler Alert], the movie goes on to reveal that the groom is willing to die and actually ends up dying for this corpse bride.
This is the story of Christ and His own bride, the Church.
We are Christ’s bride. We are beautiful, but we were once “corpse brides” ourselves, dead due to our sin and living in a fallen world with no hope and freedom. Jesus is the groom who died for us so that we could be united with Him. He had no reason to die, for He was whole and alive, but He did it out of love for us. He died so that instead of being corpse brides, we could be alive and set free.
Honestly, the idea of the corpse bride can be a hard one to accept. A lot of times, we don’t want to admit that we are dead. We don’t want to admit that we are in torment, and that we have to rely on someone else to make us whole and beautiful.
The reality is: even when we accept Jesus into our lives, there are still areas of our lives in which may be dead. And even though our groom died for us in order to bring these areas to life, we often choose to remain in that state of brokenness and despair. We either love the darkness or we are so afraid of the light that we stay in this darkness. We grow so accustomed to being dead and broken that we don’t see that life is right in front of us – that all we have to do is take it.
Today, I pray that the Church chooses life in all areas of our hearts and minds. I pray that we recognize our brokenness, and instead of being ashamed or even proud, that we accept the sacrifice the groom made for us. God doesn’t want a corpse bride. Because as beautiful as she may seem in her lifeless state, this beauty pales in comparison to a bride who is alive, joyful, and free.