One of my favorite things to talk about are relationships. Perhaps it’s the marriage and family therapist in me but I could literally talk abut relationships all day (and now I’m realizing that at one point in my life, while in school, I did). I’m grateful I’m surrounded by couples willing to discuss the ups and downs of being in a committed relationship. I’m grateful for the men in my life who don’t sugar coat anything and for my other single ladies who are out here with me, trying to navigate this territory. Call me a hopeless romantic and maybe even crazy but I believe we’re all capable of extraordinary love. God loves us with a perfect love, so much so, He gave His only begotten Son. Every day, come what may, He chooses us. Every day, if we allow Him to, He’s perfecting us so we’re able to share this love. And from this thought, the questions I’ve been asking in my recent conversations about relationships are: are you experiencing the love you’ve always dreamed of or at least working towards it? Are you experiencing extraordinary love?

Extraordinary love will look different for everyone. It will feel different for everyone. For some people it’s being showered with kisses every day. For others it’s being able to pour out your heart and soul without fear of judgement. While others it’s being able to worship together whether at home or at church. And still some others it’s tagging each other in every funny meme they see. Maybe for you it’s all of this or none of this, but whatever it is, I pray you’re experiencing it in your relationship. I pray you experience butterflies sometimes and you have more good days than bad. I pray you laugh from your soul every once in a while. I pray you’ve grown more spiritual than you were before you met your partner. I pray you go places and see things together. I pray spending time together isn’t a burden but a memory worth creating. I pray that even when you’re mad, you always remember you’re on the same team. I pray that apologizing becomes easier to do and forgiveness flows like a river. I pray you don’t just talk a lot but you communicate effectively. I pray you’re playing an active role in creating your own happy, your own extraordinary love.

Too often we fall into relationships because it’s convenient and we find ourselves waking up every day hoping extraordinary love will just appear. We hope our partners will sense what we need without us communicating those needs. We hope our partners will fill a need they weren’t created to fill. And sometimes we’re too afraid to let go of a love that isn’t extraordinary. We think this is the best we deserve when in fact, God has so much more. Extraordinary love is a choice and we have to actively choose it. A couple who had been married over 20 years told me that after you say I do on your wedding day, you have to commit to saying I do to that person every day for the rest of your life, which is to say, I choose you. So before you take that next step, be sure the extraordinary love is already in full effect.

I’m not just waiting to be married, I’m waiting for extraordinary love. If you’re single and desire to be married, hopefully that’s what you’re waiting for. And if you’re married or in a committed relationship, hopefully it’s what you’re experiencing. If not, I hope you get the courage to believe that not only do you deserve extraordinary love, but you can have it, if you’re willing to do your own work and let God help you create it.

Matthews 22:37-40 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

My cousin continuing her extraordinary love (July 2019)