Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Love is Blind

This past Sunday, sitting in the second row during our Easter service, I thought about the couple seated next to us.

You see, the lady, Diane, is blind. Not the kind of blind where she's living in the dark...but the kind of blind that allows her to see just enough to get around familiar places and even recognize people. I've actually joked with her that I thought her blindness was an act. One time I was directing a choir rehearsal and there was a marker on the floor. Do you know that five or six people walked in and ignored it entirely before Diane walked in, white and red cane in hand. She stopped to pick it up, I kid you not. The blind lady was the only one who saw it!

Anyhow, what struck me on Sunday about her and her husband wasn't that she was blind. What struck me was how in love and committed to one another they must be. He has lived his life to serve his wife. He has to drive everywhere. He reads to her. Helps her find her way in unfamiliar places. If you really take the time to think about it, it is an amazing burden to bear.

Yet, he bears it, and has for who knows how many years they've been married.

And it makes me wonder why it is people find so many reasons to get divorced. When you stack the obstacles they face in their marriage against the example of Diane and her husband, you have to wonder.

Marriage is supposed to be eternal. Well, at least until death. Oh, I know, many people have legitimate reasons for divorce. Yet, with the divorce rate as high as it is, I doubt that is the case most of the time.

There have been times my wife has admitted she's scared I could leave her some day. Couldn't I find someone prettier or more interesting or something? When she says this, I'm flabberghasted. Leave my wife? I can't imagine it, for any reason. We've been through a lot together. We've faced trials. We've had disagreements. (Though, I always end up being right...of course.) We've been down paths that seem like there is no way back from.

Yet, never once has the thought of leaving my wife entered the picture. It just isn't an option. And it won't ever be an option. For better or worse does not and cannot be conditional. Marriage takes work. Hard work sometimes. But the rewards are tremendous. I love my wife in a way that can never be put to words.

Diane and her husband show how true that is. Love is blind, and love is unconditional. Love is not, as many people presume, simply a feeling.

Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails.


Melanie Lynne Hauser said...

That was beautiful, Ryan. And that's my favorite passage from the Bible.

My husband and I have been married almost 18 years and we are constantly amazed by how in love we remain. We'll look at each other and say, "How can I still love you this much, after all these years?!" (Sorry to get all Hallmark Card-y on you. I usually steer away from sentiment!) But I think we both have looked at this as a marathon, a long journey, where there will be good times and bad times but it will always continue, no matter what. I'm not sure everyone else does that, frankly. This is an immediate gratification society; it's all about what you've done for me lately. And maybe that translates to attitudes about marriage, to.

Great post!

Scott K. Johnson said...

Hey Ryan,

Good post!

I too think that people enter into marriage too easily and without really considering the longevity of the relationship.

Some people do it because it's "The Thing To Do", or they feel it's the next step in the relationship.

I'm with you on this one.