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Song of Songs 5:16 … I wear this verse wrapped around my left hand ring finger. I am not sure how many times in my married life I have taken my wedding ring off and read those words … they are so huge, and yet so simple.

They are simple in the fact that it is eight simple little word, two simple little concepts. My wife and I are friends … my wife and I are lovers. Simple …

Yeah right! The complexity that is life make those eight little words so hard at times.

Friends? What does that mean for a married couple. When the dust of raising children settles will we still be friends? Will we still have things in common … or will we have drifted as so many couple in today’s world do?

Lovers? So much of life is about yourself … what does it take to be a lover? How does one set aside all the personal desires of the body, mind and soul and love the other member of the marriage? Does time make it easier or more difficult to love, to be a lover of my wife … to be loved by my wife.

I am so thankful for my wife … she stole this ring that I wear (from me as I kept it safe, not the store we bought it from) and had it engraved without me knowing. She everyday endeavors to be a closer and dear friend to me than most days I deserve. She is my lover. My wife places much time and effort into building a better relationship and marriage with me than we had yesterday, and when she wakes up tomorrow … I know she will do it again, and again, and again!

This effort does not go unnoticed … I desire to know her better than I did yesterday, and I always will. The more time I spend with her the more I realize how I am really just getting to know her now. The intimacy in our marriage is on an upward bell curve of goodness, and I really can not explain it.

Many people today throw in the towel on marriage well before the stage we are at in marriage because they were not friends and could not be lovers. The order I think is important … this is my friend, this is my lover. The more I know my wife, the more completely I love her. The time I spend just being with my wife building a deeper friendship, it is time that is worth twice as much in the lover area.

Lately I am thinking about this as I have had the privilege of watching two strong Godly women love their husbands as their lives came to an end. One gentleman got ill rather quickly and passed before his time as they say. His wife was a rock of support, love, care and compassion. She most definitely was his friend and his lover … and he was hers too!

The other gentlemen is older, has lived a long life … and still lives. But he knows he is at his end. he loves his wife and worries for her after he passes, but she will have none of it. There are no tears, not publicly anyway, as she wants to be strong for her husband … as in her words he is the one suffering. She is his friend, she is his lover.

Thank you Jesus that you gave me a women that is my friend, and is my lover. Help me to cherish her, love her, care for her in a way that builds an ever deepening friendship and a more enveloping love everyday.

PROVERBS 31:10 A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.

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