Listen! My beloved!
Look! Here he comes,
leaping across the mountains,
bounding over the hills.
My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag.
Look! There he stands behind our wall,
gazing through the windows,
peering through the lattice.
My beloved spoke and said to me,
“Arise, my darling,
my beautiful one, come with me.
~ Song of Solomon 2(8-10) New International Version
Are you intrigued by the possibility of encountering the glorious love of the Living God in and through the eyes of your spouse?
Are you wishing that your spouse would experience God’s loving touch through you?
What is your desire for intimacy and oneness? Is it incarnate love? It can be. . .
I would like to elaborate a little bit more on last weeks revelation about the Mystery of Marriage and Love that we gleaned from Mike Masons exceptional book “The Mystery of Marriage 20th Anniversary Edition: Meditations on the Miracle .” In this book, Mike depicts the unfolding mystery of living a loving marriage relationship as follows:
“Marriage is, before it is anything else, an act of contemplation. It is a divine pondering, an exercise in amazement. This is evident from the very start, from the moment a man and a woman first lay eyes on one another and realize they are in love. The whole thing begins with a wondrous looking, a helpless staring, an irresistible compulsion simply to behold. For suddenly there is so much to see! So much is revealed when two people dare to stand in the radiance of one another’s love. And so there is a divine paralysis of adoration: Everything else stops, or at least fades into the background, and love itself takes center stage. Suddenly, for what seems the first time in life, one is presented physically and three-dimensionally with an object that is entirely worthy of one’s wholehearted love and devotion.”
Do you remember that first glance of love and adoration that you experienced when you first laid eyes on your spouse? If you want your marriage to remain strong and vibrant, you need to train yourself not to lose that love and adoration for your spouse. You need to practice it everyday. I know that things come up in life that will try and distract you from the wild and unbridled love and romance that you experienced when your relationship was new and exciting. It is easy to let time and familiarity turn into complacency and you can easily take your relationship for granted if you are not careful. But you need to learn to actively pursue that love and romance everyday. You need to look beyond your spouses faults and shortcomings and recognize them for the beautiful creation and gift from God that they are.
Mr. Masons description of a loving marriage relationship continues like this…
“That is what “falling in love” means. Naturally one cannot believe one’s eyes. That love should come embodied, encased in flesh, walking and talking and loving in return —for that we are never quite prepared. Of course we are programmed for it, to anticipate and to long for love to enter our lives in this dramatic and personal fashion, but that is not to say we are not bowled over when it actually happens. For we are skeptics by nature, and as much as we may want and even expect miracles to occur, we do not really believe in them. When the miracle of love erupts before our eyes, we cannot help being swept off our feet, dumbfounded, incapacitated for any other action or response except that of love itself: gazing, marveling, contemplating, loving. When this event takes place between a man and a woman, it means that forever afterward these two will be doomed in the situation in which they shall have no business whatsoever in being together at all unless it is first and foremost the business of continuing this same wondrous gazing into one another’s eyes, this helpless contemplation of the mystery of their love. ”
What do you see when you look at your spouse? Are you looking at their faults? Are you looking at their selfish tendencies? Are you looking at the way they get too caught up in their daily tasks and the way they seem to not give you the time and attention that you deserve? Are you looking at the way they seem to nag you about all the things you are not doing right? Or are you looking at them the way that God looks at you? Yes, your spouse has faults. No, they are not perfect and yes, they will disappoint you. But let me ask you. Are you perfect? Do you always do everything right and never sin? Far from it! Yet God looks at you with unconditional love because of what Christ did for us on the cross. Christ makes us look perfect in the eyes of God. Learn to look at your spouse with the same mercy, grace and unconditional forgiveness that God does when He looks at you.
Lets see how Mr. Mason wraps up his advice for how to live a loving marriage relationship…
“…marriage, as simply as it can be defined, is the contemplation of the love of God in and through the form of another human being. It is spellbound fascination with the sheer incarnation of something so purely spiritual. Without this activity (which is no activity at all, really, but a heavenly stasis, a simple gazing into the depths of love), all the other motions and duties and activities of marriage will be empty. When a marriage loses this, when it loses the power to stop a couple in their tracks and arrest them into the rest of loving contemplation, when simple love for its own sake no longer holds center stage, then a marriage has lost its heart. To lose this simplest and most obvious thing of all is to lose everything. Marriage is living with glory. It is living with an embodied revelation, with a daily unveiling and unraveling of the mystery of love in such a way that our intense yet shy curiosity about such things is in a constant state of being satisfied, being fed, yet without ever becoming sated. It is living with a mystery that is fully visible, with a flesh-and-blood person who can be touched and held,
questioned and probed and examined and even made love to, to our heart’s content, but who nevertheless proves to be utterly and impenetrably mysterious, infinitely contemplable.”
Mason, Mike (2010-11-03). The Mystery of Marriage 20th Anniversary Edition: Meditations on the Miracle (p. 42). The Doubleday Religious Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.