Actions Lead Emotions // What’s Different?

I said in an earlier post that I would come back to this topic and share more thoughts.

This weekend I saw so many huge life events posted to Facebook that it was overwhelming (that’s an entirely other post as well).

One couple getting divorced. Two couples getting married.
The death of a friend who was dating the ex-husband of one of my best friends from high school.

As I was thinking over these things, primarily the divorces (before I found out about the lost life) I couldn’t help but think that the drama felt the same as the high school relationships that I knew so well – even some of the same individuals.

The people are the same, the drama is the same, and, unfortunately, the level of commitment to the relationship and the willingness to love selflessly are also the same.

Of course, with this thought in mind, I did what I always do: self-application.

What’s different about us? What says that we’ll have a marriage that will work when statistics (and friends with real stories) tell us that one in two ends in divorce?

Here’s what I know:
My friends – Bob & Jill (for this story’s sake) – got tired. They reached a point where they no longer FELT like loving each other. Maybe it was that way for a long time, or maybe not long at all. Either way, they did not FEEL good about it anymore, and rather than lay down their lives to show love to the other, they gave up.

That’s simple… that’s just NOT an option for us.

But, when you’re there, caught up in the emotions, I imagine it’s easy to forget that you said divorce was just “not an option” for the two of you.

Here’s the reality: the way that I can love John the best is when I choose to do so on the days that I just plain don’t feel like it.
Because, that’s selfless love.
That’s a love that lays down its’ own life for that of another.
That’s Jesus.

His actions led His emotions, because He didn’t feel like dying on the cross, but it didn’t matter.
It wasn’t about that.

The Gospel is sacrificial, selfless love that points to the unconditional love and grace of our Father, and that’s what our marriage is to be a picture of.

That’s what’s different.