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I’ve been thinking about love lately because, not only is it Valentines Day, it is also our 16th wedding anniversary. We aren’t doing anything this year because we spent eight days on a cruise to Alaska in August and because Bruce is deep in the studies of EMT classes. By not doing anything, I mean we aren’t going out for the weekend or out for supper. I told him I’d rather wait to go till I have all his attention instead of his mind being taken up with his studies right now. Which is a wonderful way to feel. Not celebrating a few years ago would have devastated me. That’s what got me thinking about our journey of love…

Remember the warm fuzzies of dating and feeling so special because someone loved you. Out of all the people in the whole world you found each other and yours was the first special relationship. No one else had a clue how wonderful you were to each other. Yours was the only relationship that mattered. Everyone else could not have possibly ever had what you were experiencing or they would not be so bored with you as a couple. 
On top of all that you wondered how it was possible for married people to look so bored with each other. You were positive that if you married this person, you would remain in heavenly bliss for the rest of your entire life. No one could have told you otherwise.

Then came marriage and the first three years without children while you slowly woke up to the realities of life. Your spouse, who could do no wrong before, now was able to disappoint you. You soon came to realize that if you were going to remain special to each other you would have to let go of a few expectations and learn to accept each others flaws. You find out you actually have to be responsible for the work that gets done and the income that is made. No wonder married people looked bored to you before. Or stressed. Suddenly, love takes on a whole new meaning.

It’s not till after ten years of marriage, after you have moved across the country, after you have experienced multiple job changes, and three births that you start to really know that love is more than a feeling of warm fuzzies where everything is painted glossy and beautiful. Now you begin to realize that love is working a job to pay the bills. Love is a husband that comes home from work at night exhausted but still gets down on the floor to play with the babies. Love is what keeps you constantly on call to make the meals, keep things clean, and the babies diapers changed.

Love is what keeps you together when things get ugly. Real love comes after praying for it sometimes. Love is what has taught me more about God in my life by the driving need to get on my knees for wisdom. Loving another person in marriage has been the best teacher for spiritual growth. Nothing else could’ve taught me what real forgiveness is. I have found that true peace in my marriage comes from learning what love is. The fastest way to peace has been picking up the cross of Jesus and laying down my way. That’s love too. Sometimes, learning to love means learning to be quiet and then other times it means learning to say what needs to be said in the way God would have me say it.. Love finds out what works when. The best ways of loving my spouse can’t be found in any book {maybe the Bible}. Learning what love is to my spouse counts for a lot more than reading the “ Five Love Languages”. Learning what love is to my spouse is like grit on sandpaper sometimes; abrasive to get to the right smoothness but so worth the pain.

Finally, real love accepts that things aren’t perfect and they aren’t supposed be. Real love leaves room for grace to make those mistakes you are going to make. Real love is willing to go through the bad times with patience all the time knowing that God is the one with the true wisdom and that He always gives it in time. Real love for my spouse is walking daily with my God and resting in what He says is good for me. Real love isn’t worried about how good I’m being treated by my spouse but how godly I am treating him.





  1. Don't you just wish you could go back to the glassy-eyed Shilah of the dating years and tell her a thing or two? :-) But no, wisdom isn't really gained thru memorized instructions, but rather thru living and experiencing the valleys and mountains in all their ugliness and beauty and allowing God to walk thru with you. You have done well, my friend!

  2. Yeah, the dating was fun but I like reality pretty good these days! Thanks Jenn, you are on your own journey of love & know what I mean. Shilah

  3. I know your right about all this....but I still wonder now what would it take to sweep me away like I was back then? I just wonder......

  4. Wow said it just like real life is...with words that somehow just bump around in my head! Thanks for sharing!!

  5. I love these well seasoned words and I echo your thoughts! Amen and Amen. i'd still rather be 12 years into it than newly wed, I think.:)


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