Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Love v In Love

Reece and I decided to engage in a little reality TV watching last night and the unfortunate choice was the Bachelorette. It continues to break my heart regarding the state of marriage and the ideas of love that are so prevalent in our society. People seem to place being 'in love' in such a high regard and 'love' as a thing of much lesser value.

Choosing to love and falling in love are two very different varieties of love. One is based on emotion and 'soul mate' status while the other is based on a choice and commitment. While I certainly believe that falling in love can and should be the initial stage in a relationship, it certainly cannot sustain.

I found this blurb (from a mental health communities site - www.healthyplace.com) that partially sums up my view of in love v love - it just leaves out one key ingredient...

The euphoria of love is falling in love; the work of love is choosing to love. Choosing to treat each other with kindness. Choosing to keep the relationship alive and healthy. Choosing to give to one another. Choosing to remain friends despite conflicts. Choosing to negotiate conflicts to mutually-agreed resolutions. Choosing to combine their resources. Choosing to value and respect their differences. Choosing to create a beneficial partnership of independent, yet interdependent individuals.

Real, lasting love is a choice.

Both partners choose to build the relationship. Both partners are committed to creating a healthy home, where each of them is free to be their best self and where each of them is willing to encourage the other to be their best self and reach their greatest potential as individuals

And that ingredient is Christ. I would add to that last sentence '...to reach their greatest potential as individuals and one in Christ.' There is no motivation to love without keeping the model for love, grace, mercy, and sacrifice at the forefront of your marriage and individual lives. What does love mean without seeking to understand the Creator of love? It means more than commitment. It means more than respect.

1 Corinthians 13: 4-8

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. Love never fails.


kristyo15 said...

Amen! Total agreeance from this household. Well stated! :)

ClintandGina said...

I love it....and couldn't agree more. I must admit that Bachelorette was a guilty pleasure of mine this season.

Tammy said...

This is a great post and a great definition of love vs in love. I will save it and use it many many times, I am sure. It makes me sad that we are so self absorbed and fail to see what could be if we chose to truly love.