As a father of two daughters and a husband over fifty years, I’ve accumulated experience and with much thought and insight into what love might be.
I married, at nineteen, to a wonderful woman who I had known since the fourth grade. We both were raised in a small agricultural community in the Midwest. I didn’t realize then she was to become my wife and soulmate.
Our marriage was tested quickly with my deployment to Vietnam only three months after we married. This grew our bond even more. Our daughters were born in 1971 and 1974. My daughters, as most young girls dreamed of marriage and life with their soulmate.
Asked many times, I finally thought of an answer. My answer was love is a need. If you feel a person in your life is needed to complete your life, that is love. As the years passed, my definition has changed with a more experienced approach.
The love of another is the desire to share your life with someone and to grow into the people GOD wants you both to be. Genuine love is not physical, although it may start out that way, it will soon give way to the wants and needs of your spouse.
I have mentioned in previous blogs the acronym J.O.Y. Love is joy and I have found through a relationship with GOD you can glimpse into what I refer to as a spiritual love. It makes you aware that a gesture of love, such as that of JESUS, in the Christian belief, is a gesture of sacrifice to his creation. Marriage is a creation merging two lives into one. If we follow his example, we too can feel we’re committed to the marriage as JESUS is committed to his creation, you. Spiritual love is a two-way street. love is given and love is received to glorify one another.
I look upon my wife as a gift from GOD to be cherished and cared for. The King James bible, describes a wife as one who takes strength from her husband and then returns it as encouragement and praise. If his wife is to draw strength from her husband, he must strong.
One strength she can draw from is his love and respect for her. If she feels loved and respected as an individual participating in the marriage by her husband she will return his love and respect.
Another strength is her husbands expression of love for her to others. A public acknowledgement of his love for her will be returned in many ways.
The one strength she will draw on the most is one of maintaining the laws of the marriage. Your vows you express in your marriage to love, cherish, honor and obey the laws of this new creation until death do you part.
My marriage of fifty years has taught me while we will have times of discord, genuine love will find a way to keep you together if you work hard and draw from each other’s strength and forgive each others weaknesses.
Father always said, “Marriage is the willingness to put up with each others crap.”
He and my mother where married for fifty years.
Happy Valentine’s day.