It’s not in Valentine’s Day bouquets and chocolates that true love can be seen and felt, as nice as those things are.
It’s in the dear voice in the hospital room when a scary diagnosis comes. “It’s OK. We’re in this together.”
Love is in the extended hug at the end of a long day when a tired husband comes in from the cold, having toiled so that wife and child can have what they need.
It’s found in the man who carries the laundry baskets up the stairs for a wife who struggles physically.
It’s in the clean laundry a husband finds in his drawer and the meals prepared, however simple.
Love is there in forgiveness when an apology comes from one or the other.
It is in the warm hand that covers a cold one when life’s tragedies seem overwhelming.
Love is in the eye contact where a smile is never far away.
It is in the ear of the listening spouse who may have heard the same story many times, but doesn’t say so, because he knows something lies underneath the telling of it.
Love lies in deep understanding of where a spouse is coming from, even when they are at their worst.
It is real love that patches up hurt places, that listens, that protects and defends. It’s real love that builds up the other, that looks through kindly eyes, that supports, that is loyal and steadfast.
This is what young adults, especially, need to know in this tragic, broken world of fakery and fraud in counterfeit love and marriage.
When you remove all the contemporary wedding frippery and glitter, all the Instagram filtered glam of the Big Day, you will have either a foretaste of hell or a glimpse of heaven.
It takes two who are committed, by God’s grace and with his help, to walk through life together with the goal of bringing a little heaven down, whether it be in a hospital room, a little cottage or a castle. It can still be done.
“And standing there…Jane knew that she had found the best. Marriage was not a thing of luxury and soft living, of flaming moments of wild emotion. It was a thing of hardness shared, of spirit meeting spirit of dream matching dream.” ~ The Dim Lantern by Temple Bailey
“…Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.”
Shakespeare, Sonnet 116
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” ~ Corinthians 13:!3