Sunday, July 23, 2017

what love does

St Asterius of Amasea talks to us today in A Year with the Church Fathers. He says some strong things about marriage. His point is basically that God joins us together when we get married, so we better take it seriously.

But thinking about marriage reminded me of what Plato said about marriage. He said that when we love someone and are married to them, one of the chief ways that we can demonstrate our love is to change for them. That's kind of surprising, isn't it? But I think there is wisdom there when we delve into it.

When we love someone, we take their thoughts and feelings seriously. We admire them, and we respect what they think. If they think that the way we, say, do the dishes is wrong, then we should take their thoughts and feelings into consideration and perhaps change the way we do dishes, if only to express our love for them. Now, as loving spouses, we should only ask the one we're married to if they could please change their behavior if it's important. Otherwise we end up completely changing the person we married, and if we do that, why did we marry them to begin with?

However, when we apply this thinking to our relationship with God, it makes even more sense. When God asks us to change, we express our love for Him by changing quickly and without fuss. The faster we make those changes, the sooner we can become saints. And saints are what the world needs right now. Besides, we truly become ourselves when we become saints. We fully express who we are, we learn to fully become who He created us to be. So let's hasten to make the changes He asks of us... even if He's asking by way of our spouse.

God, thanks for asking us to change to become more like You. Please give us the humility and love to respond swiftly.

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