I love my husband. I love my husband more than I can express in words. As I type those words, my eyes fill with tears from the flood of emotion. I have never known this. On the other side, my husband loves me. He loves me with an intensity that too is beyond description. It is a love that I was made to believe did not exist. Now, because of him, I am confident that it is real.
Over the years, I was given books and articles written by Christian writers debunking the myth of “Hollywood love” or true love. I read what was written believing that settling for a relationship and not expecting to be loved, honored or cherished was the way love worked. It was a lie. It was a frustrating lie. It was a lie that left me feeling empty and cold. I became cynical and grew to accept that I did not deserve to be loved unconditionally. I did not deserve to be honored. I did not deserve to be desired by someone. It left me feeling as if I did not matter. It left me doubting God’s love.
I find it fascinating that anyone would say that true love does not exist. It is like saying that God’s love is not real. Clearly, in 1 Corinthians 13:4 a clear picture of love is painted.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud
or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
Again, in Romans 5:8 we read “that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Does that not sound like something that comes straight out of a Hollywood movie? Someone giving up their life for the one they love?
I read those verses and I hear true love. I hear what I see in the movies. Is it really a love that is too good to be true? A love that no one can live up to? Love cannot be that perfect. Right?! So we are made to believe.
I found true love. I believe it does exist. For me, it started with finally finding security in my relationship with Christ. It began with me allowing the walls of hurt to fall. By allowing those walls to be removed, it gave Him the room to fill me up and take His rightful place in my life. (You can read about that discovery here and here.) From there my heart began to heal. It was made ready for the one who would love me the way in which God designed us to love.
On December 1, I married my soul mate. I say that today after claiming for a very long time such a thing did not exist. My heart had grown cold to the idea that anyone could love me in such a way. The idea that someone could be my “other half” was a laughable notion. After a roller coaster ride with many curves, loops and gigantic hills, I found mine. I found the person who completes me. As cheesy as that line many sound, it is the truth. He is my other half.
Our love is not all about butterflies and roses all the time. Matthew and I can argue with the best of them. We would not be human if we did not disagree every once in a while. It all comes back to those disagreements. Those disagreements are what balance us out. It keeps us in check. It is in those moments that I realize what I have with him. In the middle of an argument, I see the love in his eyes or hear the hurt in his voice and I want nothing more than to grab hold of him and not let go. Those moments in the middle of an argument makes me see the man I absolutely adore with every fiber of my being and no longer care if I am right or wrong. Those special moments come because this man loves me as he is called to love me. He loves me as Christ loves the church.
It is fascinating to discover that God’s truth is real. When things are lined up as God has arranged them to be, everything falls into place. Love becomes a fairy tale. That fairy tale is made real by those moments in which my husband makes me confident of his love. He lives out his love for me. It is not just words. It is not just ending a phone call with “love you.” It is lived out on a daily basis. He writes me and has written me countless love letters. It is not unusual for me to get into my car and find a letter in the visor reminding me of how much he loves me. It is not unusual for him to ask me to dance in the middle of the lobby of an Olive Garden with Frank Sinatra crooning away over the speaker. It is not unusual for my husband to sit up with me at night when my head is hurting too much to sleep even when he has to get up at four in the morning. It is not unusual for me to find my husband staring at me with a look of love flowing from his eyes. His love for me is perfect. His love for me is complete. However, I know that the love he has for me comes because of his love for the Lord. The love Matthew has for me is an overflow of his relationship with Christ. For the first time in my life, because of my husband, I get a taste of how my Father in Heaven not only sees me but how He loves me. It is amazing. It is a gift. It is a blessing.
God has a design for marriage. Matthew and I were flipping through Song of Solomon and I realized that God loves romance. He created romance. We read:
You have captured my heart,
You hold it hostage with one glance of your eyes,
with a single jewel of your necklace.
Your love delights me,
my treasure, my bride.
Your love is better than wine,
your perfume more fragrant than spices.
Your lips are as sweet as nectar, my bride.
Song of Solomon 4:9-11
What a beautifully romantic passage. How tender and sweet. Full of love. God created those things around us that add romance to our world. Those birds that sing love songs to one another in the trees. He created those butterflies that dance from flower to flower. He created the flowers that grace us every spring with color and fragrance. He created the sunrises that greet us every morning with a breath-taking splendor of color. God created romance. It was His idea. His creation. And it is all because God IS love.