But the Fruit of the Spirit is:
Autumn is one of my favorite seasons of the year. I love the kaleidoscope of colors on the trees, the crisp, coolness in the air, and the happiness of my boys as they play football in the yard. But most of all, I love the trips to the pumpkin patch and the memories that are made carving pumpkins.
This, however, is not an activity my husband enjoys. Nonetheless, every year he takes our family to a pumpkin patch, helps us pick out the perfect pumpkins, smiles for all the pictures, and supervises all the carving. Why? Because he loves me.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her. . .
On the wall of our bedroom are the following words: “Love Beareth all things, Believeth all things, Endureth all things.” These words are taken from 1 Corinthians 13 and serve as an excellent reminder that love is much, much more than just a feeling.
In fact, love is NOT a feeling at all. Love is an action — a commitment that we make. In a marriage relationship, love says that we will stay with that person no matter how we feel. We will not always feel wildly in love with the person we married . . . but, because we understand that love is not a feeling, we will still always love our spouse.
Here are some ideas for how you can work on love in your marriage relationship. These work best when you do all the “On your own” activities first, followed by all the “Together” activities and one or more of the “For Further Fun” activities.
ON YOUR OWN:
1. Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Substitute your name for the word “love”. What areas do you need to work on in your marriage relationship?
2. Think back to when you first started dating your spouse? What initially attracted you to him/her? How has your love for your spouse changed over time?
3. When have you felt the most “in love” with your spouse?
4. Pray for your love for your spouse to grow. Pray also for the areas you know you need to work on when it comes to expressing love according to 1 Corinthians 13.
1. Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 together. Stop after each characteristic of love and share one way that your spouse has displayed this quality in your marriage relationship. (ex: Love is patient: I remember once when you were patient when I was shopping for a new outfit. You didn’t hurry me along at all.)
2. How has your expression of love for one another changed over time (for good or bad)?
3. Pick one quality of love that you both need to work on in your marriage relationship. Come up with some ways that you can both improve in this area.
4. Pray together. Pray for your love life. Pray also for the expression of your love to follow the characteristics you read about in 1 Corinthians 13.
FOR FURTHER FUN:
1. Rewrite your vows. Knowing what you do today about marriage and your own relationship, what would you include or change about your vows? Spend some time writing them out and then read them back to one another. You may even want to copy them and put them some place where you can both be reminded of them on a regular basis.
2. Look into each other’s eyes and sincerely say, “I love you.” Go one step further and tell each other what that means.
3. Write a love letter to each other at some point during the week. Find a way to sneak it into your spouse’s stuff so it is a surprise when he/she finds it. (Or send a love email or text, or post “I love you, have a great day,” to their facebook page.)
4. Look for ways to show each of the characteristics of love found in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 to each other at some point during this week.
If you have any other ideas of ways that we can work on love in our marriage relationships, please send them my way! I would love to hear from you!
Here is a link to a pdf document of this Bible Study that you can print off: