Love is…

Posted: February 12, 2012 in Love and Marriage
Tags: , , , ,

Do you know what love is?

This is my 18th year with my bride.  My Valentine. I’ve experienced love–and the truth is, it’s NOT WHAT YOU THINK.  I mean, YES it’s romantic, intimate, exciting, breathtaking, intoxicating, etc.

But there’s ANOTHER side of love most have never seen. And few dare to talk about.  The Bible says it this way…

 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NIV) 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

I don’t know about you, but very few of those are natural characteristics for me.  Love is also a lot of things that weren’t advertised. Here’s what we’re learning about love through the years:

1. Love is a CHOICE.  There are days where I’m glad my bride wakes up and CHOOSES to love me. Despite my faults, despite my imperfections, she loves me. When love is a choice, you DECIDE not to entertain thoughts about someone else.  When love is a choice you DECIDE not to run from problems.  When love is a choice, you DECIDE that divorce is not an option.

2. Love is WORK.  It certainly isn’t easy.  I once heard the statement, “Love is messy.”  I agree. Anyone can love when things are clean, easy, beautiful, perfect.  However, life rarely affords us those opportunities for long.  The key to a love that lasts is the ability to love “in the trenches”.  When the kids are sapping your energy. When you can’t pay your bills. When the pounds add up. When you’ve got onion breath. when you first wake up in the morning. Love requires effort.

What’s cool is that Jesus knows this about us. He loves us despite our imperfections. While we are at our WORST:   Romans 5:6-8 (NIV) You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

3. Love is a COVENANT. Since Biblical times, this is the highest form of COMMITMENT that can be reached between parties. It stipulates that when one falls short, the other makes up the difference.  A covenant isn’t broken. It binds the parties for LIFE.  It’s great to go into a marriage knowing it will last my whole life. I know I won’t be perfect, but our love isn’t based on perfection.  It’s great to know that I’m loved even when I mess up. That gives me confidence.

4. Love is PLEASING. Okay this last one sounds weird, but let me explain. My wife and I love to “please” each other.  Yes, in every way!  We love to have fun together.  We make it our goal to make our marriage so rich, that it repels any temptation we encounter anywhere else.  After all, why would we seek someone else when we have ALL WE WANT in each other. We try to exceed each other’s needs. Love is learning how to please your spouse. Love is serving them.

What’s on your list?  What would you add?

What is your “love story”?

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