When It All Falls Apart

This is part 4 in a 5 part series on marriage.  Parts 1-3 can be found here- Part 1Part 2 and Part 3.divorce1

First we looked at the wife’s role, then the husband’s role and yesterday we looked at putting it all together.  But today I want to discuss what happens when everything falls apart.  What happens when love dies, where does it go?

First let me give you my opinion on the word love.  I think it has been overused and definitely abused.  We tell people we love them all the time.  But how often do we mean it?  We see love portrayed in the movies endlessly but is that real love?  All those romantic movies of the one true love sweeping you off your feet and finding your Happily Ever After is almost laughingly absurd.  What we see in most movies is not love but lust.  It is all emotion, not much substance.  Emotion plays a part in love but it is a very small part.  What we feel in those first few months of “love” is a physical attraction, aka- lust.  Lust in and of itself is not a bad thing.  Without it a lot of us wouldn’t be here.  Lust is the physical attraction we feel toward another person.  It is intense, it is wild, it is passionate but it never lasts.  Why?  Because eventually life gets in the way.  We start to learn about the other person.  We find out they have faults.  They aren’t as perfect as we thought.  Maybe they fart a lot or never clip their toenails.  Maybe they talk to much or explain things over and over.  Maybe they tell the same old jokes over and over until you just want to scream. (Author’s note- I do that one)  Whatever it is, however it shows, eventually the truth comes out and you learn that they aren’t perfect.  This is where love comes in.  True love, not Hollywood love.  Am I willing to look past these faults and love them anyway?  divorce-main_Full

You see most people think that love is a noun when in actuality it should be a verb.  A verb is action, a verb is something that you have to do.  It implies effort on our part to make it work.  I believe love is a decision.  I believe I can decide to love someone and I will.  It is a choice I make everyday.  Not much romance, not much lust, but it has far more strength.  If love is a choice then I determine who I love, not some wild intense physical attraction.  Let me say this, I am attracted to many women, every day.  Is that wrong, nope.  I can’t help it.  It is physical.  It is science.  I have friends that I am attracted to.  Before you get upset, so does my wife.  We both know who the other person is attracted to and we take measures to ensure it goes no further than that.  Why are we not jealous, why don’t we fight about it?  Because we trust each other, because we have both decided to love each other and only each other.  We have both worked hard to earn each other’s trust.  We have put measures in place to continuously grow and strengthen that trust.

You can fall in and out of lust, but love is different.  It takes a conscious decision to not love someone anymore.  There is a passage in the Bible that speaks of true love.  I imagine most of us have read or heard it in one form or another but let’s take a look at it.

true love4 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (New Living Translation)

As you read through that did you see what I saw?  Everyone of those takes action to make it work.  Is it easy to be patient and kind when your spouse isn’t?  How hard is it to not keep a record of wrongs when all you want to do is bring up something that happened in the past?  Isn’t giving up a whole lot easier than staying the coarse?  Does enduring through all circumstances seem like a cake walk in the land of dreams and ice cream?  No, because love is hard, love is work, love is putting yourself on the back burner and grabbing the turkey out of the oven with no oven mitts on.  It hurts.BleedingHeart

But at the same time, love heals.  If you are the recipient of that type of love nothing else in the world can compare.  True love is the same love that Jesus gave us when He sacrificed Himself on a cross for our sins.  Ever heard that old saying, Love covers a multitude of sins?  Where do you think it came from?  Jesus’ love for us covers our sins and our love for each other covers the sins we commit against each other in our marriages.  But the key is, you have to decide to let it.  Love can do amazing things but it is a choice, not an emotion.  It is a decision, not a feeling.  Emotions and feelings change faster than the seconds tick by on a clock.  How can we rely on them, how can we trust in them?  The answer is, we can’t.

Why do most marriages fall apart?  Because we don’t know what love is anymore.  We think it’s a movie fairytale with a princess and a dragon and a brave knight.  But it isn’t.  Maybe at first, when the lust factor is kicking in high gear, but eventually, after the dragon is slain and the princess is safe real life drives a stake through the heart of love.  Love has to be protected, nurtured and cared for.  It takes work.

Love is a choice.  Love is a decision.  What will you decide?

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2 Responses

  1. Have you been talking to Mandy? I think sometimes my farting in bed might be the death of our marriage!!! LOL But seriously, I liked this post. It is definitely hard not to want to bring up past faults, and the temptation is definitely there, but thank God we have the greatest power there is to enable us to fight off tempation. Greater is he that is in us than he that is in the world. Submit to God, resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
    So thanks for the blog, definitely a blessing. We pray for your marriage and your family often, keep us in prayer too.

  2. Nice Jason. They make Beano for that!! http://www.beanogas.com/

    Very true. We do have the power as Christians to fight temptation and to overcome. God truly is greater than he that is in the world!

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