Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love. EPHESIANS 5:1-2
Like many couples, Barbara and I began our marriage with a commitment to love one another. But we didn’t really understand what real love was all about. Now, after more than three decades together, we know that our love is much more than a feeling—it’s a lifelong commitment. I shudder when I think of the shallow love that we had for each other when we first married. I’m glad we didn’t give up on our relationship when we didn’t always feel “in love” as we had before, because we would never have experienced the benefits that were just around the corner. We would have missed the fruit that comes through years of building memories—raising children, working through problems and trials, enjoying romantic getaways, working together to implement a shared vision for families.
I’m reminded of a great story of covenant-keeping love. An elderly man faithfully visited his wife every day at a nursing home. She had Alzheimer’s disease and would be very ugly to him some days. Yet every day he told her, “I love you.” One day the head nurse called him into her office. “Every nurse here is impressed with you,” she said. “We want our husbands to be more like you. But your wife doesn’t know who you are, and she doesn’t know whether you come or not. You could be doing other things and leave us to take care of your wife. Don’t feel like you need to come every day.”
Tears began to flow down the old man’s cheeks. He looked at the nurse and said, “I understand what you’re saying to me, and I know that my wife doesn’t know who I am. But I know who she is. She is my wife, and almost 50 years ago I made a covenant with her that in sickness and in health, I would be there
for her, and I will be.” Now that’s real family life and real love!
In what ways is your love more mature now than it was when you first married?
Pray that God will continue to grow your understanding and application of real love.