Matthew 22:36-40 – “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
When we extend our love to others; we are actually SHARING from our own endless reservoir…that which was originated when God created each of us in His own Image. The type love we share with our spouses, while unique, is similar to that which we share with Christ…in that…it is a uniting love…a unifier.
Then there is the love for friends, neighbors, and the type we share with the rest of mankind. We can love inanimate objects, such as food, sex, cars, running, gambling, clothing, and alcohol. This is a “worldly love” which is sanctioned “only” by satan.
Love can be misunderstood, or clearly understood…as the song says… “Love is a many Splendored thing.” One’s sense of love changes as we journey through life. I’ve always loved my wife… but… after 57 years…it has taken on an entirely different meaning over the years…a growing process, a more meaningful love. It’s a deeper, more profound… love; which is more tolerant, abiding, patient, giving, confident, forgiving, gentle, respectful, defined, and more mature, and yes… more divine.
I sense a greater respect for my wife today, than I did 20-30-40 years ago. In fact, I should call it… a greater admiration. I look up to her more now. I have more confidence in her opinion. We thought we knew what love was 57 years ago… but I would wager that neither of us could give more than a textbook, or sweetheart/romantic… view of it, back then. Today, we would define it more in line with what I’ve outlined above.
I believe, too, that there is a shift in the divorce rates… which is aligned more with the slower economy, and survival mode of the last 5 years. Less people can afford the by-products of divorce.
The Bible tells us in Ephesians 5:25-27 – Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her; that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.
Today’s Advice: Spouses…look for Christ in your spouse, and you will also find the Love of Christ. Love… the healer of all wounds.
The two greatest shows of love in the history of mankind… is when God made us in His own Image, and when Jesus said… “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
A worthy NOTE: Love is not confined to “love in the spiritual sense”… it also, most definitely, applies to “every phase of our life.” Love is a required ingredient in our career pursuits; social activities; sporting events; weekend activities; the family unit… and yes…our spiritual life.