“Tadaa tatataaa … I’m loving it!” Everybody knows that melodious McDonalds’ slogan by heart. This week I learnt that this infamous childhood lyric is grammatically incorrect. The perks of becoming educated, right? As the lecturer was explaining she said: “In proper English love does not exist in the ‘-ing’ form, but we see it becoming more widely accepted nowadays.” Using loving it means that the thing you are referring to is loved only for a moment. That is why to love originally did not exist as loving it. It would imply your love for the object or person is temporary. “But isn’t that exactly what is happening now?”, I thought to myself. We live in a ‘loving it’ society.
Loving it has been popularized: your love for someone can be there one moment and gone the next. It happens in relationships all the time. It might have even happened on the aisle as someone said “I do”, they were loving it. Whatever it was: the idea of marriage, the infatuation, the glamour. With so many people entering relationships with this loving it mentality, it makes sense that divorce rates are at an ever high (even amongst Christians). Nowadays, it takes extra vigilance to find someone who truly loves you and understands what it means to love. True love is not time-bound and it always endures. True love requires real-time dedication. Marriage is a symbol of true love, so marriage requires real-time dedication.
Dedication can be seen as the way you sacrifice yourself and devote your time and energy to your marriage on a continuous basis. I can try to explain what dedication is, but you will encounter it for yourself (or already have). We will all experience dedication in a different shape on our marital journey. There will be seasons when you have to sacrifice more of yourself for your spouse or your marriage. That is when the glory and beauty of marriage is shown: when both husband and wife dedicate themselves to each other.
Dedication is reflected by the way you handle yourself in your marriage. Your dedication to your marriage can be seen by your loyalty, effort, time and love. As Ephesians 5:29 sayys: “After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church” (NIV). Devoting your lives to each other and prioritizing each other’s wellbeing embodies what Christ did for us. He showed us a crucifixion type of love.
“But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good.”
(Romans 5:6-8, NLT)
When your spouse is in a helpless moment, you have the divine opportunity to show your dedication and love as Christ did for us. Difficulty really only gives us a chance to prove how dedicated we are to our union and each other. With two dedicated hearts we can show this loving it world that love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away (1 Corinthians 13:8, NIV).
As our Ghanaian ancestry puts it: “Awariɛ kwan wari”. The road of marriage is long, but with mutual dedication God will bestow his blessings upon the journey. Be devoted to one another in love. Honour one another above yourselves (Romans 12:10, NIV).