If my husband and I were to say that our marriage was successful during the first few years, we would have had a very low standard of measurement.
We have some wonderful memories but if the truth be told, we also had many struggles as we learned the ropes of married life.
We butted heads more often than I want to admit.
Neither of us was prepared for the differences that are inherent in the opposite sex.
Couples are always smiling in wedding pictures.
Are those who have been married more than a year, smiling a wry smile, knowing the lessons that have been learned behind closed doors?
Never Give Up
We bickered like a brother and sister.
You could say that I wasn’t submissive and that he wasn’t being very understanding.
None of that matters.
We were both caught in a web of selfishness. We were clueless on how to put into practice the Christlike love demonstrated between the couple in the beautiful Song of Solomon.
People told me to give up.
To throw in the towel.
One thing we did right was to commit to each other through thick and thin. For better or worse.
OK, so it was worse.
We pressed on. And on.
Learning to Love Takes Time
It took time to learn to love.
It took getting to know God better and learning to lay down our desires and expectations.
It took me praying, “Lord, change me!!” and not praying “Lord, change him!!”
What the Song of Solomon Teaches Us About Loving Our Husband
I don’t have all things about loving my husband down. I am still learning after all these years.
The Song of Solomon is considered to be a poem, though it is not the kind of poetry that I usually think of as a poem.
It is beautiful.
It paints a beautiful picture between a Bride and a Groom.
It is a picture of Christ and the Church that sets an example of the perfect marriage between a husband and wife.
If you are honest, your marriage has not been perfect any more than mine.
We probably failed forward more than most couples but it was always just that, FAILING FORWARD.
Always growing and moving towards a closer relationship though it was sure hard to tell for many years!!
The bride hesitantly calls herself a rose of Sharon. Hesitantly because, like most young brides, she is not confident in her beauty or abilities.
I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys. ~Song of Solomon 2:1~
Sharon was a plane in the Holy Land and in this verse it is not referring to Jesus but the girl is referring to herself. I have a Rose of Sharon bush in our yard and it reminds me of the simple beauty of the young bride even though I know this is not the same flower of the Bible.
The lily of the valleys were very common flowers found in fields on the planes. Again, just ordinary.
As the Groom continues the conversation, he assures her of her beauty and that he loves her just as she is.
How different than the critical comments we too often shoot at each other when our marriage goes through strain and stress.
How much we can learn from the complements and declarations of love shown by these two lovers.
By night on my bed I sought him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not. ~Song of Solomon 3:1~
He slipped out in the night and she woke up to an empty place in the bed!!
She desperately looks for her love and for a long time but could not find him.
When she found him,
I held him, and would not let him go. ~Song of Solomon 3:4b~
What a picture of how we are not to let Jesus go!
My husband occasionally goes away on business and will be gone one or two weeks. I am a mess!!
This poor girl is desperate to find her love.
How different this is from our culture that gives up on marriage so easily.
Never give up. Always keep loving your husband.
The saddest thing to me is the alarming rate that husbands are abandoning their wives and children. I know too many who have had this terrible thing happen to them.
Never take your marriage for granite. Always keep loving on him.
Loving Words of Affirmation
Song of Solomon is filled with beautiful words where the bride and groom express love for each other.
The phrases and cliches were sure different in Solomon’s day!
I think I would look at my husband like he was strange if he said, “Your hair looks like a flock of goats” or “Your temples are like a piece of a pomegranate in your curls.”
There’s nothing like being told that you have fruit stuck in your hair!
But those were real expressions of endearment ‘back in the day’.
I don’t express my love for my husband quite like I should.
When I was growing up, I reacted to those oozing words that slipped from the lips of some women. It seemed insincere to me. Not that they were insincere, just that I was a kid.
I am going to try to do better to express how much I care and love my husband.
Life is short.
We only have today to express our deep love for each other.
If you are struggling to love, you would be surprised at how doing and saying loving things starts to change how you feel and how he responds to you.
Ask me how I know!!
We have been married for 38 years now (I was a child bride 😉 ) and there is something about sticking it out through thick and thin, for better or worse, that makes love get BETTERER and BETTERER!!
Are you struggling in your marriage? How can I encourage you? How do you express words of love to your husband, or don’t you?