Sacrificial Love

Some time ago, I attended a wedding.  The priest gave a sermon that partly touched on the aspect of sacrificial love.  While I don’t remember the sermon in its entirety, I remember I was deeply touched, and reminded me of the good parts that I remember when I was still a practicing Catholic.  What happens when our spouse gets sick?  How do we deal when one spouse ages more quickly than the other. I found a post about the movie “The Notebook” that reminded me of the priest’s sermon

I’ve been thinking about the “in sickness and in health” part of marriage.  My husband rarely gets sick but is now facing some health issues.  What the scope and severity of these issues are remains to be seen.  Hopefully my husband recovers quickly and is able to function as he had before, that is of course what he wants and what I pray for.

But I know sometime in the future, our physical bodies will change and we will together face the issues of growing old together, if we are both blessed to live long lives.  What will that mean for our marriage?  Only time will tell.

While these thoughts aren’t new, I often wonder how prepared we are as a society to face the challenges of a sick spouse.  What happens if our sick or aging spouse is no longer able to meet our needs, sexual or otherwise?  That day could come with no warning.  Would we be ready to love our spouses in a sacrificial way?

I sometimes read marriage related books or posts , some of a Christian variety.  Often I end up more aggravated by reading the articles.  There are so many Christian writers and bloggers who seem to have the message of be a love machine that never says no if you want to have a good marriage. Be a lady on the streets but a freak under the sheets. Of course they don’t use the actual language of “freak under the sheets”, but they would be honest in their intentions if they did. But they never seem to address what happens to the marriage when one spouse can’t meet the physical expectations, either temporarily or permanently.  Where is the rest of the foundation of your marriage?

I’d like to think that when the time comes, I would be somewhat prepared.  It would surely be a challenge, but it one I hope I could meet to the best of my ability.  Maybe I’m wrong about my belief that society doesn’t  prepare us for the final years of marriage.

Of course as a nurse, I have seen many elderly couples who do seem content in their marriages, despite their physical losses.  I’d love to hear their stories about how they have navigated through the challenges.


4 thoughts on “Sacrificial Love”

  1. Ten years ago, Annabell went to the local hospital for a relatively simple operation – couple of days and she would be home. She went to the shower, and just about smashed the alarm button as her wound opened. Nurses came running to answer the emergency. Long story short – she picked up several infections, two water and – Joy of Joy! – a Staph infection. Now that is a changed reality. They tried to treat her here and I nursed her but finally they decided that it was too much and she flown to the Royal Adelaide Hospital, where she remained for several months and then transferred to another hospital – The North Eastern – where she remained for a further five weeks. We are still living with the aftermath, operations, and a drug regime that compromised liver and kidney functions. But you are right, I don’think we are quite ready for major changes, but in order to survive, a marriage has to be build on much more than sex.
    Fun part:: When we finally came through it all I was talking to my boss and I mentioned that the hospital told me a few days ago that the fatality rate is 1 in 4. Her reply was, Yes, I knew that but I didn’t think it was a good idea to tell you”

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Some girlfriends & I were talking about this on Messenger yesterday. I admit that I find it hard still, after nearly 20 years, to be gracious and forgiving and not-so-bloody-selfish in my relationship with the man. There are days I desperately wish that he knew where the dishwasher was or would get his own painkillers and days I verbalise this in a not-so-nice way. Other days I hold it in; Other days I am grateful that he is there and know that there are ways I absolutely piss him off too.
    Any relationship is so much more than the bedroom and those are the ones worth working on. I don’t think any marriage is going to find both partners completely in sync all the time – sexually or otherwise – and it’s about loving that person enough to work thru the rubbish to find the gold underneath.

    Liked by 1 person

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