Okay, I am tired of people saying love is not enough and telling us how some kind of qualities are what we need to succeed in marriage.
I am sorry, I do not agree and more, I think it is a load of crap.
LOVE IS ENOUGH. LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED FOR A SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIP OR MARRIAGE.
Now, let me go slowly. The first myth that people have bought into is that LOVE IS A FEELING. The flaw of this myth is that today, I can FEEL love for you and tomorrow, I just do not FEEL love for you and because I do not FEEL love for you, I am allowed to leave and everybody understands. You see, this here is one of the major reasons for divorce or break ups and not necessarily because women of my generation know that they do not need a man to be whole or complete. If this is your definition of love, that is why you buy into that lie that “I can love my woman but still cheat on her. After all, it is just a FEELING that I have.”
This kind of love is selfish because it is self-absorbed. I don’t FEEL like loving you, I treat you as I like. I FEEL like loving you, I treat you well. Are you following? At the end of the day, it is all about me. It is ‘I’ centred. This is the reason they fallaciously say all is fair in love and war. No, all might be fair in war but not in love. If what you are doing is simply to your convenience, then you do not love, it is as simple as that.
Let us go to what love really means. 1 Corinthians 13 tells us “love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth; love bears all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”
I use glasses so it is possible I missed an attribute of love there. Is there any place where it said love is a feeling that you have towards someone? Please, if it is there, let me know. So I withdraw all I have been saying.
Certainly, we all agree it is not there. Please, follow me. I am going somewhere.
Somebody explaining this said the Bible did not take its time to explain to us what hunger is, or what cold is. You know why? Because those are feelings, you do not need to be explained to, when you feel it, you will know. How does a child know he is hungry and when you put food in his mouth, he stops crying? Yes, you got it, because the baby FELT hungry. Nobody is taught how to feel feelings.
The Bible however took its time to tell us what love is because it is not something we FEEL, it is something we do. And because it is something we do, we need to be taught how to do it.
I love my dad, I am supposed to be kind to him. I love my neighbour, I am not to keep records of his wrong. I love my boss, I should forgive him. That is what love is.
Let me give another analogy. We are asked to love our neighbours. Do you really think God would ask you to love when He knows it is a feeling? Considering it is a feeling, my loving my neighbour would be dependent on whether I feel like or not. I mean I could just tell Him, “Lord, that woman is so mean, so I do not FEEL like LOVING her and because I do not FEEL like LOVING her, I do NOT LOVE her.” You know what God is likely to say to me at that moment? “LOVE her anyway.” In other words, be kind to her, forgive her, tolerate her, keep no records of her wrongs … anyway.
I just want to ask. If you have these, what more do you need? I believe these qualities are what people say we need alongside love to keep a marriage. Well, I say all these other qualities are just features of love.
Before I proceed, let me chip in at this juncture that there are times when you would need to love people from afar. When someone is toxic to your existence, love yourself enough to give them space. It does not mean you regard them with hatred or bitterness; you just love them from afar.
Now, to other substantial issues, I can hear someone trying to school me on the different shades of love, you know, the philia, eros and all that? I sincerely do not believe all those things but I mean they are good talk, so I am liberal about them.
This is what I think when it comes to marriage. Whereas the attributes of love are the same and the definition of love is the same, when it comes to marriage, I think what also gives is attraction. Love is constant and expressed the same way whether to your parents, friends, family, neighbour, enemy or spouse. It is attraction that gives you butterflies in your tummy, not love or supposedly a type of love.
Trust me, in marriage, attraction would not always be there. Usually, when it is not there, it takes the feelings along with it; after all, it was the attraction that brought it on in the first place. Times like this are when we hear people say, “I am no longer in love with him or I am no longer in love with her.” It was not love that gave way. You guys probably did not have love in the first place. That person probably did something wrong or whatever it is that attracted you somehow altered or you were exposed to the other sides of the person and that overwhelmed the attraction. When you actually have love, then you would be able to sort those times out.
Now this is me giving my opinion. I sincerely do not think anybody should marry without attraction. You do not feel warm at the sight of the person, the person’s touch does not give you goose bumps, or you do not sometimes feel like ripping each other’s clothes off, what on earth are you guys doing together? I simply do not get it and I would not mind being explained to, tell me how you do it biko? I need to understand.
I do understand that what I just said likely contradicts what I said earlier that love is all you need. I do believe that if we know how to love, even attraction cannot be a barrier. The reason why I say attraction is important is so as to make it easier. This is someone who you would be living with for the rest of your life, there is something to be said about doing it with someone you would find easier to love. Won’t it be foolishness to have two options between someone you would need to fast for grace to love and someone who naturally appeals to you to love and you pick the the most difficult one?
Having said that, attraction comes in different ways. It is not always physical. Some people might be attracted to funny guys, some are attracted to noise makers, some are attracted to no-nonsense people, some to quiet and timid people and some are totally physical people. And sometimes, these qualities changes with time due to experience or circumstances.
For me, for instance, I like guys with dimples, throw in a well-kept dreadlocks and a guitar, then you have had me. When I see a guy with dimples, I cannot help but drool. It comes naturally, I cannot help it.
You would be surprised what attracts some people but it is not our concern. What matters is everybody has what attracts them and when they see those qualities in certain people; they feel that butterfly in their tummy. This is what most people term falling in love.
What I need you to take from this is that love is a doing word, it is an action, it is not passive and it is something you decide to do whether you feel like it or not. So when you marry that lady or guy you are attracted to and completely endorsed by God, when something happens that takes whatever it is that attracted you or when you are so angry at them you do not FEEL like being kind to them, be kind anyway. Only then can you confidently say you have mastered the act of love, only then can you say you love.
“For God so LOVES the world, that He GAVE His ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3: 16.
“But God commendeth His LOVE towards us, in that, WHILE WE WERE YET SINNERS, Christ DIED for us.” Romans 5:8
This right here is the true definition of love.