사랑이 그냥 가슴 설레는 남녀 간의 에로스라면 사랑은 보고 싶고, 만나고 싶은 들뜬 마음이라고 정의하면 맞을 것입니다. 그러나 사랑은 참고, 기다려주고, 애절하며 때로는 감내해야 하는 부분이 있어서, 그 모든 것을 ‘눈물’에 담지 않았을까라는 생각입니다. 딸을 시집보내면서 많은 분의 공통적인 질문은 제가 울었느냐는 것이었습니다. 백여 번 결혼 예식을 주례하면서 신부 부모들이 우는 것을 종종 보기도 하고, 때로는 고약스럽게 우는 신부 아버지를 놀리기도 했던 저였습니다. 막상 제가 딸을 보내면서는 어느 순간, 밀물처럼 밀려오는 주체 못 할 감정을 마주하며 ‘이런 것이었나?’라는 상상도 하지 못하던 상황이 되기도 했습니다. 이 지면을 통해 딸을 시집보낸 이 세상의 모든 부모님들께 딸을 시집보낼 때의 감정이 이런 건 줄 모르고 지나온 것을 사과하고 싶을 정도입니다.
딸을 보내면서 지나간 날들의 사진을 정리하며 앨범을 만들고 있습니다만 사진마다 새록새록 추억이 떠올라 좀처럼 진도가 나가지 않고 있습니다. 아무것도 모르는 철부지에게 큰누나라는 책임감을 강요했던 것이 제일 맘에 걸립니다. 막내딸은 자기의 ‘반쪽 엄마’가 시집을 간다며 눈물을 글썽거릴 정도로 언니를 의지했나 봅니다. 자기가 4살 때 담임 목회를 시작한 아빠를 돕겠다고, 교회에 처음 오는 아이들이 있으면 무조건 다가가 결국은 아이들이 ‘이 교회 너무 좋아요’라는 말을 하게 만들어서 부모님들이 어쩔 수 없이 우리 교회에 다니기로 했다는 얘기를 수도 없이 들었습니다. 말도 안 되는 일로 속상해하고 끙끙거리며 기도하던 아빠 옆에 와서, 자기는 무조건 아빠 편이라고 말해 준 것도 내 딸이었습니다.
딸을 시집보내는 날 아침, 제 눈가에 주르륵 흐르는 눈물을 닦으며 딸에게 너무나 고마웠습니다. 예식이 끝난 후, 식장을 마지막까지 정리하는 신랑 신부를 보며 그저 듬직하고 신뢰가 가는 사위가 고마워서 눈물이 났습니다. 또한, 신실하신 하나님 아버지께 너무나 감사했습니다. 집으로 돌아가며 저는 이렇게 중얼거렸습니다. “사랑은 눈물의 씨앗이 아니라, 눈물의 열매입니다.”
Rev. Bryan Kim
Trot show has become so popular these days that people in Korea say that they only watch food program or Trot show. I didn’t enjoy pop songs much, thinking that it was ‘worldly’, but I remember a lyric, “If you ask what love is, I will say it is a seed of tears’. This makes me think that it was definitely a much talked-about song. I searched Google and found that it was Nah Hoona’s song. He was called the king of music industry back then… he doesn’t appear much on screen nowadays. However, he brought record TV ratings of 29% with his Harvest Day performance. Anyway, I think the lyric was simple, yet it clearly revealed core of love.
If love is eros, just an attraction between man and woman, then love can be defined as desiring for someone. However, there are parts of love that are affectionate, perseverance, patience, and endurance. I think all of those are contained in ‘tears.’ A common question I was asked by many people as I sent my daughter off to marriage was whether I cried. I have presided over hundreds of weddings and often saw bride’s parents cry. Sometimes I even teased a bride’s father for crying senselessly. Sending my daughter off, I never imagined this momentary pouring of emotion that I couldn’t control and thought ‘this must be it?’ I want to apologize to all parents who sent their daughters to marriage for not understanding this emotion.
I am organizing old photos to make an album of my daughter. Each picture holds such old memories that I can’t seem to organize. It hurts my heart to think that I forced responsibility of being the oldest to a young child who didn’t know anything. My youngest daughter cried because her sister was a second mom to her. She must have really depended on her older sister. When she was 4 years old, she wanted to help her dad who just began a senior pastorship. She approached every child who came to church for the first time welcoming them to the point of them saying ‘I really like this church.’ I have heard countless times how parents had no choice but to come to the church. When I was worried and praying over things that didn’t make much sense, it was my daughter who came to me and said she was on my side no matter what.
As I wiped off tears rolling down my face the morning of her wedding day, I was thankful to my daughter. After the ceremony, as I watched my daughter and her new husband cleaning and picking up after, I had grateful tears for my new son in law, who is reliable and trustworthy. I murmured as I returned home, “Love is not a seed of tears, but it is a fruit of tears.”