Mature Love is What A Marriage Needs
Instead of the traditional vows, which are, “till death do us part,” more and more weddings start with the phrase, “as long as we both shall love.”
This is a recipe for very short marriages, since many people these days believe that love is mostly a romantic feeling. And weddings that don’t actually use that phrase, “as long as we both shall love” in the vows, often still operate on that basis in their mind. So, one of the problems with that phrase is that it is unclear what definition of love is being referred to. But another problem is that the idea of love that usually is being thought of in this phrase is romance.
Key to Love: Honoring and Cherishing
Romantic feelings are nice, of course, when they are there. But romantic feelings come and go like a feather in the wind.
A more mature kind of love is
honoring and cherishing someone.
This kind of love, honoring and cherishing, can be done whenever a person chooses. A marriage cannot survive for the long-term based on a loving feeling that comes and goes, as romance does. But rather, marriages that last must be based on a more mature love. This kind of love includes things like, “for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.” Mature love is based on a decision and commitment that I make to do certain things that benefit my spouse. Everything is not about me.
Committed To The Welfare Of “Us,” Not “Me.”
In marriage, this kind of mature love means a number of things. For starters, this kind of love means:
- Sexual faithfulness
- Not having an emotional affair with another person.
- Not spending excessive time, thought, or energy on something that causes your spouse to feel neglected, instead of cherished.
- Sacrifice for the good of “us.” It’s not all about me and what I want.
This kind of mature and committed love must translate into giving of one’s time and energy and making frequent sacrifices for the benefit of the relationship. Anything less shows that this is a relationship that is for the gratification of one’s own needs and desires, which is obviously based in selfishness. Many marriages start out with a high percentage of this kind of selfishness, but the survival of the marriage requires that at least one of the two move significantly in the direction of real committed love that includes sacrifice on a regular basis. Of course it will not be a healthy and Beautiful Marriage until both spouses make the choice to take on this mature kind of love.
Some Resources For Growth
A good start toward this mature type of love in your marriage relationship is choosing a good book on marriage and start reading it. You can find some of my recommendations at my blog resource page by clicking here. You can also find some good suggestions for getting your marriage up to the next level by checking my blog page on marriage tips.
Two more suggestions are my pages at “Secrets to a Happy Marriage: Maturity,” or “It’s Not About Getting My Way.”