What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Someone humorously defined love as ‘That feeling you have, when you feel you’ve never felt something like that feeling before.’ Love, as commonly or loosely used refers to feelings. It refers to a high emotional state of euphoria which sometimes makes no reason whatsoever.
People fall in love for all kinds of reasons, many which don’t make sense. My wife tells a humorous story about a guy who fell in love with a lady because of the way she walked. He liked the way her bum rolled, so he followed her all the way home! You wouldn’t think that rational thinking human beings will ‘fall in love’ the way they do if they took some time to think about it. How can you possibly be in love with someone because of his broad shoulders or herculean physique? What has that got to do with anything? A lot obviously, or else people wouldn’t risk their whole future because of an emotional high or mere physical attraction.
A few days ago, I was counseling a married woman and I explained to her that her husband may love her but be completely inadequate to deal with the peculiar challenges in a marriage. Marriage has a new set of problems that you have never encountered in your life as a single person. The woman looked at me and said, ‘What has love got to do with marriage?’ She exaggerated a bit for effect, but she knew exactly what I was saying. The truth is that you may be in love with someone but be totally inadequate when it comes to having a relationship with that person because love is NOT enough to sustain a relationship. For your relationship or marriage to work, you have to develop new set of skills to help you handle the issues that will of necessity arise in that relationship.
So many people have been shocked out of very good relationships because when the euphoria of ‘being in love’ faded away, as it surely will, they had not developed any skills to develop and sustain their relationship, so they fell by the wayside. They were totally disappointed when they realized that the feeling of being in love was not enough to keep the relationship together.
Relationships work because we work on ourselves. There is no short cut to this. If you want your relationship or marriage to thrive, you must develop new skills. You must develop skills like: tolerance, forgiveness, peace, patience, contentment, honour, self control, discipline, commitment…the list goes on and on. When you think you have one area covered, another inadequacy shows up in your life. Building a relationship is a continuous, life long process.
Ah, and here’s the big one: HUMILITY. If you don’t develop the trait of humility, your relationship is doomed to fail. You can pray from now until Kingdom come, but if you are arrogant, no one will be able to live in peace with you. The arrogant will never admit that they are wrong. They will never ask for forgiveness or apologise when wrong. In fact, the arrogant will never extend forgiveness and will hold a grudge against a remorseful partner. They feel that they are perfect and better than their spouse or partner. How on earth can you live with such a being? Who wants to live with a being who thinks he or she is doing you a favour by being in a relationship with you? It is quite simple: the humble will sustain their relationship but the arrogant will continually lose every relationship.
To sustain your relationship and make it work, you should start developing new sets of relationship skills and develop your character. No matter what you do, no matter what you become in life, remain humble.