This week my husband Sean and I celebrated our 26th Wedding anniversary…[which is a bit of a problem since I have been celebrating my 26th BIRTHDAY for the last… few …. years . At this point, with my lying age, I met Sean at like… minus one years old]. 😇
I wish that I could tell you that marriage has been “easy sailing”… a “breeze”…”no problem”… But, the truth is, marriage is hard. . .REALLY hard. It takes work, patience, perseverance, and the grace of God to stay with a person for twenty-six years.
When Sean and I first got married, I can remember being overwhelmed with fairy tale dreams of how our future marriage was going to be “perfect.” However, shortly after saying “I do,” reality set in and our fairy tale dreams turned into just that…DREAMS.
Then, things got hard.
I once read a quote of a woman who had six children and had been married for twenty- seven years, who said “love is what you’ve been through with somebody.”
After losing a baby, the sickness of my father, the death of my mother, and other life events, I can say with certainty that love IS having someone to hold you when you can’t stop crying and having someone who will tell you everything is going to be okay when it feels like your world is falling apart. Love IS “what you do with someone.”
However, I’m not sure that that explanation fully covers love.
These last few years, God has been teaching me about love. At first I had love really wrong; I thought love was the butterfly in the pit of your stomach feeling. I thought love was based on what you feel for someone. I also thought love was what people could do for me. God has been teaching me that love is a “verb” not a feeling. It’s something that I have to do for others.
Jesus DEMONSTRATED His love by dying on the cross.
To be good at love, I have to demonstrate my love for others. I have to make love a verb…
- even when its hard…
- even when people don’t deserve it…
- even when I don’t want to.
To be honest, I’m not always very good at love.
But, I’m trying.
The Apostle Paul prayed a prayer for the Ephesian church concerning love. It’s beautiful and I’ve been trying to pray the prayer for myself. When I pray it, I change Paul’s words, and make the prayer personal.
Paul’s prayer goes like this…
“14 When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father,[a]15 the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.[b] 16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” Ephesians 3: 14-19.
Some people label this prayer, “Paul’s Prayer for Spiritual Growth.” Paul understood that a person’s power, fullness, joy, growth, and ability to love others is tied to his or her understanding of the magnitude of God’s love.
When Sean and I first fell in love, I would always sign my love notes to him, “I love you ∞ (infinity sign) x 10,000.” In other words, I was saying that my love for him was endless/boundless.
After twenty-six years of marriage, what I’ve found is, I’m not always that great at infinite love. Perhaps no one is fully capable of it. However, God has been teaching me that He loves me with that kind of infinite love.
God’s very essence, everything about Him is unconditional, accepting, infinite love.
God loves me ∞ (infinity) x one million- billion- trillion …and God loves you that much too!
This wedding anniversary, I’m thankful for another year that God has given me; for a husband that’s better at love than me; and for a God who loves so immensely that it is difficult to comprehend!
Thanks for reading!
Love ya! ☺️