love is.

Love is a many splendored thing.  Then sometimes it’s a many headed hydra like beast that you hope to behead with a sharp sword.

Love is patient and love is kind.  This doesn’t mean you’re spouse has to be patient and kind all the time.  It means you patiently wait for their crappy mood to be over and respond kindly when they very obviously need to pull their head out of their butt.  Because you will be in a crappy mood someday needing to pull your head out of your butt.  And wouldn’t you want someone to be patient with you?

Love is a battlefield.  Sometimes you have to throw decorative pillows at each other’s head.  It releases the tension.  There are few feelings as supremely satisfying as beaning your spouse in the head.  Just lob it you know?  Don’t go all John Lester on them.

Love is not easy.  It’s not like those easy breezy songs.  I’m a selfish me monster, as most of us are, and I must tame that monster to be able to live in harmony with a husband and children.  It’s so easy to get upset when people aren’t catering to my every need, physically and emotionally.  “Well, if he had just unloaded the dishwasher.  He’s so unthoughtful.”  “I wish he would have responded differently to that.”  “Why can’t he just…”  You get the point.  It’s a subtle shift from God’s will to our will.  Then suddenly something I hear pulls me back.

Sometimes it’s a song lyric (I’m not attached to any way you’re showing up, I’m just gonna love you, like the woman I love. Jason Mraz)  My husband doesn’t have to earn my love, he has it.  I don’t have to earn his love either, and thank goodness for that.

Sometimes it’s a quote in a book.  (When you hang in there on the journey of love, when you endure and don’t take the exits of distance and cynicism, God shows up. A Loving Life, Paul Miller)  Then I realize love rolls with the punches.  I realize how great and big and powerful God’s love for me is.  How I didn’t have to earn it.  I pray that He can send a little love and patience and kindness my way.  So I can send it to my spouse.  And He does.  And I do.

The me monster has been defeated.  For now.

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