Jarrod Jacobs: Love In Marriage
Something that needs to be seen is the love expressed between a man and woman in marriage. Those who are not married are one day going to be the recipients and givers of such love, and they need to look at those currently married to see what it is like to love someone and live with them for the rest of their lives.
Shouldn’t love begin in the home? I Corinthians 13:4-8 defines love for us. When we read of love being “patient … and kind”; when we see love not being “envious” or “proud”; when we learn that love does not “behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things” and “never fails”, we know love is something special!
Love needs to be seen in married people. Beautiful expressions of love are seen in one’s youth; as a young married couple starts their lives as a family together. When children enter the family, their love grows for each other and for the children born to them. During these times, should we not see a love that is “patient,” “kind,” and not proud or selfish (I Cor. 13:4)? Absolutely!
Another aspect of love continues after the children and the vigor of youth; when love for a spouse motivates one to care for the other when ill, or ravaged with the effects of old age. I believe such love is also described in I Corinthians 13 when we read of love “never failing” and “enduring.”
I think back to special couples I know who have lived together in marriage for 30, 40, 50 years or more, and bear record to what true love is. I remember a dear sister in Christ who took care of her husband in his old age when he no longer knew who she was. I remember the husband who rubbed medicine on his wife’s bedsores as she laid in the bed dying, no longer able to move, and with bones so brittle she could not be turned. I remember the couple who were not married very long, but certainly exhibited true love when, after an untimely heart problem caused the wife to be severely brain damaged, the husband sacrificed of himself to make sure his wife could stay at home and be comfortable in her remaining years. These people took care of their spouses, not because they HAD to, but because they WANTED to, and because they understood, “this is what you do when you’re married.” They did not call attention to themselves, nor did they do the things they did to be praised by men. They did these things because it was the right thing to do, and they truly loved their spouses! They may not have realized that they were being an example to me — but they were! (Matt. 5:16; Phil. 2:15; I Pet. 2:12; Titus 2:7; etc.)
We who are married would do well to learn from those who have lived together in marriage and have endured the storms, as well as celebrated the good times together. Some who are yet unmarried ought to pay even closer attention to the married couples. Why do this? It is because in observing them, one not yet married can see just what it takes to be married and committed to a spouse for the rest of one’s life.
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