Is love enough? What criteria do you use in seeking a lasting relationship? Is a strong emotional bond sufficient to see you through the years? Let’s explore these important issues further with Pastor Jim
Are Your Standards Set Too High?
Life presents us with many twists and turns. One sets out to find a good relationship only to find someone show up who does not meet all the desired qualities. Have you set your criteria too high, or is it okay to have high standards?
I find that these type questions seem to be frequently generated by single adults, as they grow older.
It is a challenge to find a potential mate of strong compatibility and quality characteristics.
As time flows by, one begins to wonder if they have been unrealistic in their criteria. Perhaps they are in a relationship that does not measure up in one area or another but wonder if that area will be bearable if they choose to move ahead into a marital relationship. And is love enough for a relationship to work?
It is not up to me to decide for anyone else what specific criteria they use to select potential mates. I submit the following for your consideration as you formulate your criteria:
- Two major areas of incompatibility that lead to a large percentage of divorces are financial and spiritual.
- Define what you believe God wants you to seek in the spiritual compatibility area for a mate. This area is too often overlooked in the initial interactions. I suggest that it is a foundational area that is essential to a successful marriage.
- It is not selfish for you to consider whether or not the need to provide for family financial stability is a minimum requirement. So many men these days are not in the position, for a variety of reasons, to bring financial stability to a marriage. A poor financial situation can be a huge drain on a relationship.
- Many women share with me the fact that they rushed into marriage only to find their mate to be, or soon developed, a major health problem. The conversation that they share with their close friends is that this was a mistake that they wished they had not rushed into.
Sorting Through Your Feelings
Feelings are great but the initial emotions in a relationship are more fantasy than reality.
Until a couple has experienced difficulties, they really do not have a taste of true feelings.
Fantasies shoot up like a rocket but fall equally as fast. Deep love grows and gathers strength and deeper meaning through each interaction – good and bad.
A realistic amount of time needs to be taken to allow for the maturing of all areas necessary to a healthy relationship. This time will provide opportunity to experience a better sense of totality and realness of the other person. Include as much time as possible with each other’s family and friends. Family and friends can offer objectivity that is essential to gaining a real picture.
Knowing When Love Is Enough
It depends upon how one defines ‘love’ to answer the initial question ‘Is love enough?’ If the definition is the one that is commonly portrayed in the world, then love is not enough. However, if the ‘love’ is one of seasoned and considered experiences in good days and bad, then I would state that this love is enough and will ride through the victories as well as the storms of life.
Which type of love are you seeking?