Did you hear the joke about the couple who when asked by the vicar how committed they were to marriage answered. We half serious about getting married. I am and he isn’t.
Do you find it difficult to figure out how to make a commitment?
The easy part is falling in love. The challenges arise when you make a choice towards consistency, requiring sacrifices that lead to commitment. It begins with the fun moments, turning those into positive experiences and then creating new adventures as you evolve and grow together.
Where you have to adopt the mindset of ‘all in’. In thoughts, words and actions. Past easy days and the more conflicting and struggling ones too. To learn the importance of valuing each other and being caring.
To quash minor distractions and tempting moments that will eventually lead to the slow, gradual path that kills commitment.
Have you heard of the groom when asked the all important vows. Will you take this woman – for better or for worse? For richer or poorer? In sickness and in health? He answered – yes, no, yes, no, no, yes.
Perhaps it makes us laugh, but the reality is that the question about commitment begins a long time before the moment you say ‘I do’.
I am headway into wedding planning. Having been swept off my feet in June 2019 in the most romantic city in the world (Paris). And it wasn’t just the city that captivated me! I am seriously realising the complexities and excitement of wedding planning. Part of the planning presents me with a brilliant opportunity to consider the serious prospect of building a life long commitment.
- The vital point numerous couples may only consider at this important stage of wedding planning is – we will be committed as long as our love lasts.
- But, serious as it is – there are mountains and hurdles to overcome and statistics show us that usually most love doesn’t last the trying times.
- Why? Because if you base your relationship on ‘how you feel’, then it won’t prevail when life or modern living shrivels or withers love!
The stability of a lasting relationship is based on commitment. Isn’t this why we stand before family and friends pledging vows, that are a witness not only to them, but to us of a long lasting promise, meant to be forever? Let us not love with words or speech, but with actions and in truth (1 John 3:18).
When emotions fluctuate or fade, what will your love commitment be?
Imagine if our parents said to us, as a trying and troublesome teenager – I will only care for you as long as I love you. What would happen in those times we let our parents down? Or become the child who thinks we know better than our parents protective perception. And choose our own way even when it is possibly the wrong choice? We realise our parents still love us, because they remained committed to us through the highs and lows of parenting. From our early years into our teens until adulthood. As they know the perils we could not understand without the experience they have gained, through prudence and wisdom.
So too in making a marriage commitment we shouldn’t adopt the fluid version that is neither here nor there, of only loving someone when ‘we feel love’. Soon when these feelings are placed under the test of time, what will our wishy-washy response be? A good metaphor is thinking of love (emotions) like the old fashioned guard compartment on a train. And commitment (durability) as the steam engine that compels the train forward. Through the hills (ups of life) and valleys (downs of life) as we remain constant to our relationship.
God offers us the hope to consider the times when we feel love is dead to resurrect those feelings again. Because He demonstrates His own love towards us, while we were still sinners Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). And like Solomon so wisely stated, ‘Many waters cannot quench love, nor can rivers drown it’ (Song of Solomon 8:7). This includes the fluctuating, fading and dwindling curve balls life throws at your relationship and love.
You have a 30 year mortgage, a 5 year car lease, a life long gym membership, but you afraid of commitment?
Are you planning a wedding? Or perhaps contemplating the thought of making that step?
We should be bound by a commitment to love. As Christ loves us with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). Not just when we feel like it, but especially when we don’t!
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