Jesus said that “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” (Matthew 6:22-23) I think of being in a pitch black room where I can’t see a thing! I can’t see where the room starts or where it finishes! But with a flashlight, I can see whatever is around me. I think of how NASA talks about the darkness that surrounds our universe as dark energy. “There has to be energy that is making the universe expand. We just don’t know what this energy is. We also don’t know where it comes from. But we can tell that it’s there. Scientists named this energy dark energy. We don’t know much about dark energy, but we do know there is a lot of it. Dark energy makes up 68 percent, about two-thirds, of the universe.” (NASA Space Place) How can you start to measure something if you don’t know where it ends, or for that matter, where it starts? Is it a true measure, or at best, an educated guess? Let’s look at this through the lens of love. I looked at love by what I saw around me: entertainment, songs, the culture. What I saw was love as a thing that was gotten, like a magazine I got in the mail with half-clothed women. That love is sex. I realized my outlook was all wrong, it was darkened!
Before I made Jesus my Lord and Savior I looked at love as something I got, what did you do for me, give it to me. I didn’t understand that that was a lustful spirit, not love! All about getting mine and not caring for the other. Love didn’t begin, therefore, it didn’t grow; it was just a thing I got! There is an old Spanish proverb that goes like this, “He who loves one woman, has loved them all. He who loves many, has loved none.” Why? Because it’s true. God said it’s one man and one woman together and with that design, it’s a love that is respectful to all. Love is like a fire; it is life preserving when there is boundaries. The fire will keep the house warm, but if it falls out of place, it can burn the whole house down, and I believe the Holy Bible instructs us on how to keep those boundaries. I think we all have been burnt by love because we’ve overstepped our boundaries or other people have overstepped theirs.
I have learned through Jesus’ teachings, that it’s not only about caring about the flesh but also the soul. That we love our spouse’s body but also their soul, that we won’t jeopardize anything bad to come to their life and soul! As Jesus said in Matthew 5:28-29, “But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.”
We need to see our spouse as more than a fleshy object and people as mere space. It’s the hard to understand that we’re all made in the image of God and God cares for us to grow us, to teach us to love as He is Love! And this love is meant to be perfected among us. This is the work, to grow no matter what our job or title may be. Our purpose is to love our Creator, our Heavenly Father through Christ Jesus, growing in a pure love towards the ones beside us and our neighbors all around us.
The writer is a husband, father, preacher, writer, artist, musician and songwriter. Ben and his wife, Missy, reside with their three sons in St. Marys.