In the movie “Fiddler on the Roof,” Tevye asks his wife, Golde, “Do you love me?” She responds by listing some of the everyday services she performs for him. Indirectly, she is telling him that married love is intricately related to darning socks, washing clothes, and the countless other ordinary ways in which a husband and wife serve each other.
Golde has a point. Hands-on service that gets a job done is a critical part of marriage. Without it, the sweetest words of love ring hollow. On the other hand, married love is not just a matter of “functional behavior.”
Married love is a partnership where two people become “as one flesh.” They freely choose to live in common. They agree, at least in principle, to put each other’s needs and wants above their own—to lay down their lives for each other. In short, the total picture of married love includes positive affections and emotions that go far beyond the functional.
Isn’t it good to see married couples who display this mutual warmth and fondness? When I observe how they enjoy each other’s company, I feel their joy! They relate as friends, though in ways that can vary widely…
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