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February 2, 2024

Many things stick out about the day I married my wife, but my main memory is when she appeared at the end of that long aisle at the back of the church. Her radiance took me aback. Adorned in her beautiful dress and her rosy cheeks blushing through her veil, I was stunned by the fact that she and I were about to become one.

I’ve never received such a gift as I did that day. As beautiful of a moment as that was, it didn’t take long before things became more serious when the pastor asked us to recite our vows. Being in love feels so wonderful. It’s intoxicating to have someone say they want to be with you forever, but when that commitment gets defined better by vows that state, “for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part” you repeat them, but honestly wonder in the back of your mind how well you will do at fulfilling them, even though you know that’s when love takes its truest shape.

Our love of others is skewed by our selfish desires. Yet again, the sin in our hearts prevents us from fulfilling what is true and good, like perfect love. But in the haze of our failures, we see the shining light of Christ’s perfect love. Cast against the brokenness of the world, only One stands without fault. Christ is the pure example of love, serving as our guiding light for how we are to love. And, for those who have placed their faith in His offer of redemption, we receive the power of His Spirit to wage war against our idol of self-love.

The traditional wedding vows capture the essence of true love’s journey. Christ’s love, revealed in His life and sacrifice, mirrors this commitment at the greatest level. His love for us is unwavering, enduring through the best and worst moments, through abundance and scarcity, and in times of health and sickness.

“For better, for worse” reminds us that love is not conditional. Christ’s love never falters, regardless of our circumstances or imperfections.

“For richer or poorer” signifies that Christ’s love is not measured by earthly possessions, but by the richness of grace and salvation He offers.

“In sickness and health” emphasizes the importance of being there for one another during physical or emotional pain. Christ’s love shines brightly in our deepest suffering, offering us comfort and hope.

“To love and to cherish, until death do us part” signifies a commitment that goes beyond the temporal. Christ’s love is eternal, and nothing can separate us from His love.

As we collectively celebrate love this month, let’s look to Christ’s sacrificial love and strive, by faith, to sacrificially emulate Him in our relationships by the power of His Spirit at work in us. May we be vessels of Christ’s love to one another, offering a sacrificial love that stands the test of time.

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Jason and his wife DeAnne have 3 kids and have called the River Region home most of their lives. A former Family & Student Minister who, together with DeAnne, launched KeepSharing LLC to publish local family and faith resources across Alabama and the Florida Panhandle.

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