My husband and I have been married for 11 years now and I am so happy to say that I am still sooo in love with him. Now don’t get me wrong we’ve had what has felt like more than our share of challenges in our marriage from the very start. We’ve struggled through having a blended family, financial challenges, balancing home/career, both or one of us not feeling loved and/or respected in the marriage, and a boatload of other things that you probably cannot even begin to imagine…or maybe you can because if you’re married, you may have your own challenges that the two of you have conquered/are conquering.
When I say I am still ‘in love’ with Tony, it has nothing to do with my emotions or butterflies when he comes into the room. I’ve learned over the years, that my roller coaster of emotions can’t be trusted; they are as fickle as my moods and hormones! Instead, me being ’still in love’ is really about my commitment to him, God, and our marriage. Me being still ‘in love’ with him also has nothing to do with what he does or in my eyes ‘doesn’t do’. It has everything to do however with my commitment to Christ.
Just in case you’re not a Christian, give me just a moment to explain before you click me off. These are my convictions and what I am held to as a believer. You see, I believe that Jesus Christ is synonymous with Love. As a believer, I believe that I am also in Christ. So for me, when I say I am ‘IN LOVE’, it really has everything to do with me being ‘IN Christ’ and seeking to love others, especially my husband, with the same type of love that Christ illustrates…agape love. Agape love being the type of love that is unconditional and not reciprocal. This kind of ‘in love’ with my husband means that I see him through the eyes that Jesus Christ sees him. It means that I seek to fully practice 1 Corinthians 13 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20Corinthians%2013;&version=31;). Paying special attention to verses 4-7 which states “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
Every time I hear someone read this passage, especially at a wedding, I’m thinking in my mind…awwww….that is soooo nice. Now let’s fast forward to days later (okay, well sometimes, hours later) into the real life of my marriage when things aren’t necessarily clicking on all cylinders in terms of us communicating well or meeting ‘expectations’ that we place on one another….now that’s a whole separate discussion. In any case, it’s during these difficult times that I need and rely on God’s help to help me have that kind of love that is discussed in this chapter of 1 Corinthians 13. I HAVE TO, it’s not an option, see my husband through the eyes of God. When I pray and ask God to see my husband through His set of eyes, even after a disagreement or disappointment, it’s so much easier for me to be patient and kind because God is patient and kind with me. In God’s eyes, it’s much more difficult for me to keep records of wrongs because God keeps no records of my wrongs when I ask for forgiveness. I have tried it and know that it is impossible for me to have a successful marriage unless I am in Christ so that I can remain IN LOVE with my husband.
I don’t get it right 365 days a year, yet each day, I’m learning that marriage is LESS about me getting my way and MORE about me becoming and looking more like Christ. So before you give up or call it quits, ask God what is He trying to teach you about becoming more like Him through your marriage. To set the record straight, I deeply love my husband but I am finding that to have a lasting marriage, it is so much more important for me to be ‘IN LOVE’ with him, especially in the difficult times.
What do you think is the most challenging thing about marriage?
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