Single or Married, Learn to Love (2)
We established previously that the quality of our relationships is dependent on our capacity for loving others. Also, there is a lot of fulfilment in any relationship where both parties have a high capacity to love despite challenges.
Those who go into marriage expecting their spouses to be their sources of love, happiness or fulfilment are usually disappointed. Dissatisfaction in marriage usually comes when expectation doesn’t match reality; this is similar to the purchase of a product based on the promise the product holds which raises the buyer’s expectation; disappointment sets in when the product is used and it doesn’t match the expectation of the buyer. Often times, a whole lot of us approach marriage with wrong expectations of marriage. There are a whole lot of wrong reasons why people go into marriage; ranging from the pursuit of money, culinary ability, the cure for loneliness, escape from home, unexpected pregnancy and the like. When the motive for marriage is wrong, the expectations will be wrong and once the expectations are wrong, there’ll be disappointments in such marriage. John 4:13 captures a significant part of the story of the Samaritan woman who obviously was seeking for something in marriage through sampling different marriage relationships up until the point Jesus met her; she couldn’t find what she was looking for in marriage. This applies to both women and men; some go into marriage and cannot find what they’re looking for. However, the question is what are you looking for? As matter of fact, many cannot tell what they are looking for because the truth remains that what you are looking for can only be found in God. This the heart of the message that what you are looking for can only be found in God.
The Samaritan woman was looking for God in men through marriage. When you are God lover and you are filled with God’s love, you get fulfilment that nobody else can give. When you experience God’s love, your sights are lifted to God’s perspective; that love colours and defines everything that you see. What you’re looking for is God and there’s a void that God has kept in everyone that nobody else can fill but God. Loving God and experiencing God’s love makes you fulfilled regardless of being single. The belief that you need a man or a woman to be fulfilled will only put you on a search for something that no human being can provide. Often times society piles pressure that you not complete without the opposite sex; this is not true. No human can complete you, it is only God that can complete you. Hence, going into marriage expecting others to complete you, shouldn’t you ask if they are even complete in themselves. When you are filled with God’s love, your focus will be to pour your love into that person you’re getting married to. Your focus is not receiving but giving love to the other person. When you love God, your heart will be tender and He’ll be able to speak to you. Therefore, as a single, the number one criteria to look out for is does the person you are getting married to love God?
When you experience God’s love you develop the capacity to love others who don’t deserve to be loved, Matthew 5:43. Other people’s behaviour cannot be our excuse for not loving them; Romans 5:8. When you experience God’s love, you’ll love your husband or wife in spite of their attitudes. Their attitudes will not be the reason for not doing the word. As a matter of fact, your love will be unconditional just as God planned. Your love won’t be conditional depending on what others do.
For singles, do not marry just because of chemistry because it blinds; marriage has the power to heal such blindness. Commitment is the fuel that keeps the flame of love alive in a marriage; you love because you have experienced the love of God. God has love languages as well; He wants us to speak words of affirmation; Psalms 100:4, He needs us to spend quality time with Him; Luke 6:12, acts of service is equally His love language; Matthew 4:10, giving gifts as well; 1 Chronicles 29:1. Hence, after speaking God’s love languages transfer same to your spouse inclusive of meaningful physical touch. Our families will be stronger and relationships richer as we do these.