Short post today! Lately, I’ve been thinking about the kind of love necessary for lasting relationships, and below are two quotations related to the topic.
“We are all fallen creatures and all very hard to live with.”
– C.S. Lewis
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
What I find interesting in the above quotations is that both Lewis and Shakespeare approach relationships from the perspective of “there are going to be problems.”
With this premise that trials will come, Lewis and Shakespeare create an environment for a relationship that allows for what might be termed a seeing love–love that is fully conscious of the hurt a loved one is capable of causing (and heartily abhors it), yet is also prepared to remain steadfast, able to extend forgiveness and grace.
Of course, this love must go both ways in our earthly relationships: we must be willing to extend grace yet also humble enough to receive it when it is we who do wrong.
That may be all very well, but what does this steadfast love look like in practice? I believe we see the ultimate example of this love on the Cross. In the history of humanity, Jesus knew better than anyone else the brokenness of those he loved–he knew his disciples would desert him, that Peter would deny him three times. He saw better than any the fallenness of his people, but despite this knowledge, he still loved them enough to die for them. Such an unwavering love costs much, but is the sort, as the Bard writes, “That looks on tempests, and is never shaken.”
Note: For a semi-related and somewhat humorous article that served as a springboard for this one, have a look at this post.
Lewis, C. S. The Quotable Lewis. Ed. Wayne Martindale and Jerry Root. Wheaton: Tyndale Fiction, 1990. Web. 17 Nov. 2015. <https://books.google.com/books?id=kO0JeQn2TxAC>.
Shakespeare, William. “Sonnet 116.” The Sonnets. Lit2Go Edition. 1609. Web. 17 Nov. 2015. <>.