Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Studying For Love:





                How is it that men can sleep through the sound of babies crying? I will never forget the time I walked in the house after grocery shopping and my hubby was asleep on the couch with the baby monitor right next to him…with the baby crying!!! Or the night that the baby seemed to cry ALL NIGHT LONG and he slept soundly through it. I had to throw a pillow on his head to wake him up to help! That was a night when I remember feeling quite angry. I was exhausted, frustrated, and jealous that hubby was getting sleep and I wasn’t and therefore felt mad at him. Looking back on that night, I really had no good reason to be mad. He did nothing wrong. The few times I did wake him up to help he was ready and willing, he just did not swaddle, bounce , and rock the way I did and it only made the baby more upset. So if I chose not to wake him, and he has the God given ability to sleep through the sound of babies crying, then how can I be mad? Well… I am human, and sometimes we humans get mad, angry, frustrated, annoyed, irritated and impatient even when it isn’t justified. 


So what do we do when we feel mad and irritated towards our spouses? What can we do to have less ill feeling towards our spouses? We can study the instruction manual for Love….the Bible! The Bible is the best self-help book on the market and reading it together will strengthen and increase love in any marriage. 1 Corinthians 14:4-7 says that “love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres”. 


There is a lot of juicy meat in these four versus but one of the main take home messages is that love is supposed to be completely unselfish. This means that even when we do not feel the love for our spouse because we are overcome with other feelings, we are still called to love them. More importantly we are to show them we love them by our words and our actions. When we practice being patient (1 Corinthians 14:4) then we can put aside our feelings in the moment and choose to be kind and loving in the midst of feeling mad. Although it is important to express your feelings with your spouse, it is also important not to act on our feelings with harsh words, a cold shoulder, or resentment. 

God’s love is perfect. He loved us when we were still sinners (Romans 5:8). Even when we did not know or love God he still loved us. That is the kind of love that we are to strive for in our marriage and in all relationships. So much of our culture today advertises individualism and asks questions like “What are YOU getting out of your relationship”? God says, it is not about what you are getting, it is about what you are giving. For when we give, then we receive far greater in return. Next time there is tension or ill feelings towards your hubby because he is sleeping while the baby is crying or because he forgot your anniversary, how will you react? Will you choose to love?


Father God, thank you for showing us what real love is supposed to be like. Thank you for loving your people even when they did not love you back. Help us to love our spouses the way you have showed us to love them. We love you and seek to know your more. Amen
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