LOVE: Something we all want; in fact, something we all need. We are created to love; first God and then others. Jesus responded to the question of what is the greatest commandment; with, 'Love God and love others.' Everything else is based on these two basic premises. YET, do we truly love? Our spouse? Children? Friends and family? Those we are in conflict with? Too often the answer is, 'no, we don't.' Perhaps you protest that you do love your spouse; you provide for her or take care of him. But do you really love him or her? Do you give unconditionally and sacrificially? Do you seek his or her good in all things? Biblically, we are not to seek to get love, we are to seek to love; to give unconditionally and sacrificially.
1 John 3:16 tells us what love truly is: “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” Love is giving of ourselves—with Jesus Christ as our example. He left the glories of heaven to come to earth to die a horrible death for you! We tend to think that Christ’s death on the cross is all there is to His work. Jesus died to self and gave of Himself every day for the 33 years He was on earth heading for that cross. Yet, we tend to balk at any and every opportunity to quit thinking of ourselves and give sacrificially to our spouse.
What would happen if you stopped trying to get your needs met? If you stopped telling your spouse all the wrong things he or she does and sought to love him or her the way Christ loves you - dying to self and giving all without expectation of any return? Perhaps, for the first time, your spouse would see Christ at work in your life and thereby be drawn to you, rather than repulsed by you. Forget trying to change, correct, or fix your spouse! Love him or her unconditionally and sacrificially.