Movies tell us to reignite the romance. Books tell us to speak our partner’s love language. Tabloids tell us to get to know ourselves better. But the one secret to a love relationship isn’t about us at all.
How many times has our personal attempt at love failed to keep us from reacting, getting angry and placing blame? How many times has our version of love failed to step up and stop a heated argument with kind words? How many times have we turned cold, unresponsive or even resentful in our love relationship?
Even with every tip and tactic memorized, this is the version of love that we have (on our own) to give another. As I heard one pastor say, it’s like saltwater.
What is Love?
The first time I heard the saltwater comment I didn’t like it. The concept seemed discouraging, as if perfect love coming from me was an impossible feat. It only seemed that way, of course, until I saw it in action–time and time again. I saw it in action when I couldn’t control my tongue. I saw it in action when I wanted to give up over a small disagreement. The more I struggled with this concept, the more I realized it was completely true.
The one secret to a love relationship is the unconditional love–agape love–that comes to us from God. Only He can give us the fresh water we need to survive, and that fresh water pours through us to others. Is it a miracle? Yes.
When we are open to God’s love, and when we call on His help in our weakness, the secret to a real love relationship begins. It’s a love we can’t pull from ourselves with all our flaws, but it’s a pure love that comes from the source. As the Bible says, “Love is from God” (1 John 4:7).
Pray for More Love
It doesn’t matter where we are in our relationships right now. We can pray about it. We can pray for our partners and for ourselves. We can ask God to show Himself to us, and in the middle of disagreements, we can ask God to infuse us with a spirit of love. Best of all, it’s in the Bible that a cord of three strands is not easily broken…
“An enemy might defeat one person, but two people together can defend themselves; a rope that is woven of three strings is hard to break ” (Ecclesiastes 4:11-12).
We can choose God’s love at any moment–even right now. And if God is for us, who can be against us?
For married couples, this is a nice “part two”: How to submit to your husband (biblically).