Friday, September 17, 2010

Love Is In The Meatloaf

Take a pound of ground beef, some oatmeal, some ketchup, some Worcestershire sauce, and some seasonings; mix it all together; form it into a shape resembling a brick or small loaf of bread; and cook in the oven at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes and voila! You have yourself a meatloaf...atleast that's the way I make it.

I don't like meatloaf, mind you. Even describing it this way sounds as appealing as, I don't know, eating a brick, perhaps? The ENTIRE reason that I make meatloaf at all is because it's one of my husbands favorite comfort foods. I actually enjoy the thought of buying the ingredients and making them into a meatloaf because I know how happy my husband will be when he finds out we're having it for dinner. Add "the best mashed potatoes ever" and some steamed broccoli and he's in heaven! It doesn't take much for some people, I guess.

See it's not really about the meatloaf. It's about the fact that he enjoys it soooooo much. There is love in that meatloaf. It's not about me and the fact that I despise meatloaf (well, maybe that's a little strong of a word to use). It's about the fact that it's one of his favorites and I want to do things for him that make him happy. I love him!

I only wish love could be in everything I make. Because I'm making it sound like I'm really great at loving my husband when in fact, I struggle the same as anybody else. Marriage is about loving the other person and putting them first. It's easy to do that when your spouse is doing that for you, but what if they're not? What if you keep on giving and they keep on taking? How long before you stop making them meatloaf?

God wants us to love each other sacrificially, putting our spouse first. How does that play out in your marriage?

Love isn't just in the meatloaf. It's in the dishes Adam does for me because I hate dishes. It's in the lunch I make him so he doesn't have to make it in the morning. It's in the folded laundry. It's in the ways we serve each other.

But it doesn't end there. Love is not only in the things we do for each other. Love is in the time spent. Even in the activities given up so that we can spend time together. Love is in the intimacy that is shared and not withheld. Love is making connecting a priority.

Love is knowing that the way I feel love is not the same as the way you feel love. And that may be the hardest thing of all.

Love is trying. It's being committed. It's never giving up hope.
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.

If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
(1 CORINTHIANS 13:1-13)
Really, the reason love is in the meatloaf is because that's what's motivating me. I'm not making it for the sake of making it. I'm not grumbling and complaining when I'm making it because it's not MY favorite dish. I'm not making it BECAUSE he did something nice for me. I made it because I love him, pure and simple.

All this talk about food is making me kind of hungry. Maybe Adam will make me an ice cream sundae? ;)

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