Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 1 John 4:7-12 (NIV)
I’ve heard it often said (and I have said it here) that parenting isn’t for wimps. Neither is marriage. Both of these jobs are much harder than my first profession, nursing. Here I am in what could be called the autumn of my life with years of life experiences and I still believe marriage and parenting are very difficult to do with success. Every day I must intentionally seek God’s guidance and wisdom. There are no vacations or ‘coasting’.
A few years ago, Elgin Hushbeck, taught a class that I attended and gave an inspired illustration of this passage. Today I am learning specifically about how it applies to my marriage. Elgin drew an equilateral triangle, placing God at the top point, â€œmeâ€ and â€œothersâ€ at the two bottom points. He reminded us, as John did, God first loved me (arrows traveling down the triangle to me) and that we cannot say we love God if we do not love others (arrows traveling from me over to others). I show my love for God when I love others (arrows traveling back up to God). I cannot be unkind to others and still claim that I love God. In my life, dear friends, I confess that the arrows, on occasion, get ‘blocked’ at the ‘me’.
Jesus is my First Love. He receives my primary heart allegiance. In my life, Henry receives my second heart allegiance. Yes, before my children. Remember, love from God is not divided into pieces and parts so that one receives less when another is added. God’s love multiplies so that there is always enough for everyone in my life, including me!
Marriage works when I keep my Bucket of God-Love full. When I intentionally spend time with God and allow Him to pour out His love on me, then there is always enough love in my life to give fully to my husband and children. But I am the one who allows the flow to continue unimpeded from God. I am grateful that God convicts me when I am not the conduit I should be to Henry. I feel awful. I want to continue to learn and be the wife that God wants me to be so that His love is complete in me.
Our marriage must be in my daily prayers. I need Jesus to teach me His way, His truth. I want so much to be a blessing to my husband and to the life that we have committed to God.