This is tough and hard pill to swallow. Honestly, when I came across a devotional based on the bible verse 1 Peter 4:8 I was forced to look within me and I had a spiritual awakening on the person I was being in my marriage and relationships. I am not here to force God on you but I am firm believer in a higher power and I use God’s word to bring me peace, comfort, and knowledge and apply it to my life.
So let me first give you the verse, 1 Peter 4:8 says “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins.”
Falling in love is easy. Choosing to continuously love someone day in and day out despite their sins is even harder. By “someone” I mean your significant other, brother, sister, parents, best friends, or anyone close in your life.
I applied this to my marriage because Lord knows marriage is hard. Rob and I are adjusting to this new season of life with no baseball, which means we are around each other 24/7. There is little room for excitement or missing one another. We have fought more than ever over the smallest crap and have not shown each other grace or love in time where we probably should have been. We have been used to our own selfish needs and schedules due to baseball season, and when there wasn’t one I thought it would be AMAZING to be a normal married couple but it was hard.
We were forced to deal with healing old wounds from my struggles with depression and anxiety, Rob’s selfish ways due to baseball, my OCD of having things done MY WAY, his ways of not picking up after himself, infertility, but most of all confronting the fact that we love so differently. After my battles with depression, suicide attempts, and anxiety, I changed a lot and Rob changed a lot. I didn’t know how to love myself or Rob, I didn’t know how to be a friend, family member, and Rob didn’t know how to love me.
It honestly felt like many failed attempts. I felt I was failing as wife.
I am a give and show 100% type of love. If I am giving 100 I need 100 back. When I show affection and emotion I need that shown back to me or else I want to quit putting in the effort. The truth is that is not how marriage, relationships, or love works.
Long term love is making the conscious choice to love that person day in and day out, having grace and patience on the days it isn’t perfect. Love doesn’t have terms and you have to put your expectations to the side because your wants are different from your needs that God has for you.
The pastor covering the verse closed the devotional by saying, “Your emotions will follow your obedience.” You see even when it’s hard or you feel forced to love that person due to their sins or bad habits, you must make the CONSCIOUS decision to show love and your obedience when eventually allow your emotions to show up in ways you never thought. It will no longer be forced or fake.
So how do you love and be loved? Be obedient in your practice towards unconditional love. Have grace for yourself and the other person.
Always choose love, friends.
Xo Natalie Z