“Marriage is a promise and commitment that is meant to transcend the emotion or feeling of the moment.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 21, 2022
Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. Song of Songs 8:7
The Song of Songs contains some of the most beautiful poetry in the entire Bible. With each word you are invited into the beauty of pure love and affection, with each lover rejoicing in the gift of the other. It holds up for us a picture of intimate human love to which we all aspire and deeply desire.
Yet what do we do when these words ring hollow and empty? What if you have experienced the loss of relationship, a failure to love, or have longed for this kind of love for years yet never found it?
If you are in a relationship, there are times when these words match the emotion and desire of our hearts. It does feel that nothing can quench or drown your love for another. Yet as anyone who has been in a relationship knows, there are other days when that emotion is a distant memory, days when you feel like your love is all but lost.
It is so important for us to remember that God’s vision for intimate relationships is not based simply on the feeling of love or the emotion of the moment, but is in fact the glorious celebration of God’s commitment to us as the people he loves! Love will never be swept away because the love of God can never be quenched. God gives himself fully to his people, loving them even when they fail to love in return, loving them, we could say, even when the feeling is long gone.
This is why marriage is often spoken of as a covenant. It is meant to be a daily image of God’s love that is built into the very fabric of our lives. And it is a promise and commitment that is meant to transcend the emotion or feeling of the moment. Marriage is God’s gift to support and protect the love between a man and a woman, giving it a foundation that can weather the wildest storm.
If you are married, seek to love your spouse in a way that shows the world the self-giving, covenant-keeping love of God. If you aspire to marriage, don’t believe the myth of the “soul mate” or spend your time looking for someone to “complete you.” Instead seek a love that cares more for the good of the other, a love in which you can selflessly give yourself away for the good of the one you love. And if the topic of love and marriage brings up acute feelings of pain and broken promises, throw yourself on the love and goodness of God, and there find your healing through the perfect love of Jesus Christ, who loves us to the very end (John 13:1).
Father, give us your grace, we pray, that our earthly relationships, even in their imperfections and frailties, may be a means by which the world knows and sees your self-giving love.
How can you seek today to not simply receive love but to give yourself away for the one you love?
Stephen Curtis Chapman: I Will Be Here
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