Thursday, October 29, 2009


Do you believe in destiny? Do you believe in the idea that there is that "one and only" for you? Do you believe in finding the "true love" of your life? Is there one "miss right" or "mister right" for you somewhere? Do you believe that you have found, already, the only one meant for you?

If you answered "yes", then I would have to assume that you also believe in Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. In those fairy tales, the damsel in distress was rescued by her true love, the one and only hero that could sweep her off of her feet, or kiss her back to life.

(If you are getting concerned about where this might be going, be patient and read on.)

God, in the Bible, tells the husband to love your own wife. He does not say that He hopes that the husband loves his wife or that He wants the husband to feel love for his wife. He commands the husband to love his wife (period). We husbands seem to notice real quick that the wife is commanded to submit to the husband. She is not told to feel submitous toward her husband. It has nothing to do with feelings. The same is true as relates to the husband. What God tells us has nothing to do with feelings or emotions. You cannot command someone to have a feeling or feel and emotion, you command them to take an action.

What about "falling in love", or for that matter, "falling out of love"? Those phrases are tossed around as if we had nothing to do with the event, it just happened to us. We were there minding our own business and all of a sudden, we fell in love. Or, we were happily married and the next thing we knew, we had fallen out of love - we were just innocent bystanders who are now asking, "How could this happen to us?"

You may be thinking, "What about the feeling I get in my heart when she comes near? Isn't that the feeling of love?" There definitely is an emotional side of the love relationship, but it is not correctly labeled as "love". It may be attraction, affection, affliction, attention, etc. It may be an emotion that resulted because of the love - feeling secure, wanted, desired, etc.

Love is a choice or a decision. In the marriage relationship, this decision is a commandment. In other places in the Bible, God tells us to love our neighbors. Clearly, He is not intending us to have the same emotions toward our neighbors as we have toward our spouse. He is commanding us to act in a manner that demonstrates love toward others. In marriage, God expects us to act and express and live in a way that demonstrates love to our spouse. This is lived out in many ways: showing preference to her over myself, protecting her, making her feel secure, showing a longing and attraction for her only, being affectionate and intimate, sharing private matters only with her, doing my best to make her feel she is most important to me, telling her that I love her, etc. Living a life of love also involves not doing things to discredit her confidence in your love for her. You do not give her reason to doubt that you are continually choosing to love her.

Love is a choice, a choice we make each day. Love is meant to be a way of life. If you are falling in love, it is because you made that choice. If you feel you are falling out of love, it is because you made that choice. If your relationship is not what it used to be or what you want it to be, check your own life. Where might you have made decisions or have taken actions that resulted in your pulling away.

Choose love! Live according to that choice. Emotions and feelings will follow the decision you make. When someone makes a decision to pull away from a relationship, even ever-so-slightly, the corresponding emotions will follow. On the other hand, when we choose love and make the effort to demonstrate that decision, the corresponding emotions will follow.

Commitment, too, is a choice.

So, is there a "one and only", somewhere out there in the wide world and you only hope that someday you will find the only one who would be right for you? I do not believe so. I believe that God made us with the capacity to love others. For sure, there are those we are attracted to and those we are not, but to choose someone to love is just that - it is a choice.

Remember, love, as used here, is a verb - an action verb, similar to: run the race, fight the good fight, win the prize - love your wife - hold her hand, hug her more, listen intently, keep her safe.

I also just ran across an article that demonstrates action in love:

1 comment:

  1. Great post Uncle Mike! I can't wait to choose to love a certain man one day, hopefully sooner than later :) and know that he has chosen me!