Thursday, July 05, 2007
As Christ loves the Church
St Paul wrote that men should love their wives as Jesus Christ loves the Church. Until, the last few months I knew about that passage, I had read it and I thought I knew and understood what he meant.
Then I got married...
And of course St Paul's teaching took on a much deeper, clearer and intense meaning. I had previously understood that yes, there needs to be an intense and unifying love between a husband and wife as there is between Christ and the Church. However, I had not really picked up on the sacrificial part.
I may never need to sacrifice my life for her as Christ did for the Church, but certainly I have had to sacrifice my selfishness and time among other things (money is actually the least of the sacrifices). I am having to die to myself in order to grow more united to her and to love her more Christ-like.
Like in any marriage we do things that annoy or offend the other. Often it is a struggle to continue actively showing my love, but Christ never fails in His love for the Church despite the failings of Her many members. It is indeed a struggle at times, but I know the only way is to continue in love.
All this sounds difficult, and any married person can tell you that it is hard, but surprisingly I have found that the advice of St Paul is not antiquated, irrelevant advice from "some dead white guy", it is precious time-tested wisdom. The more I sacrifice and die to myself, the closer the two of us become. And of course the closer we are the more wonderful it is. It is in this closeness that I discover more and more the beautiful, wonderful woman that she is.
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam