Romance is not an un-Biblical concept. While the description of the body in several passages in the Song of Solomon may not appeal to our Western ears, it is still used in the courtship rituals of some Eastern countries today. The Proverb writer speaks of romance like this: There are three things which are too wonderful for me, yes, four which I do not understand: the way of an eagle in the air, the way of a serpent upon a rock, the way of a ship in the middle of the sea, and the way of a man with a maid, 30:18-20.
The writer of Ecclesiastes tells us to live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your life of vanity, which he has given you under the sun…for that is your portion in life, 9:9. “Live joyfully” is an injunction; it is not passive. Do not wait for it; initiate it yourself. These passages were originally spoken to couples whose marriages were arranged. Imagine what God expects of those of us who chose our own spouses after “falling in love.”
Two or three times a week as I clean out Keith’s lunchbox in the evening, I find red, heart-shaped love notes he has cut out of some office scrap paper and written—I know he has taken time out of a busy day to think of me. And he usually calls during his lunch hour.
Eating a nice dinner out is in our budget only a couple of times a year—and that is up from the early days of our marriage--but I can make a four course meal for two for the price of one entrée in an upscale restaurant, and enjoy doing it. Several times a year, we dress up, get out the china, light the candles, and have a meal I have worked on all day. When the boys were little, I fixed them their own special meal—more along the lines of pizza than boeuf bourguignon--then explained how they could help mommy and daddy have a special time together by going to bed early, and staying there. Besides the reward of their favorite meal, they could stay up late reading and talking to one another. We occasionally heard thumps and giggles long after we would have ordinarily put a stop to it, but never once did they not fulfill their part of the bargain by interrupting us because we stressed to them how important their part was and they were thrilled to do it.
Marriage is a high maintenance relationship. If you neglect it, it goes downhill in a hurry. Do something today, no matter how small it may be—and whether or not the other one reciprocates--to keep that from happening. Make sure it is something that will mean something to your spouse, not just to you! Men and women are different that way (as if you hadn’t noticed). Then choose another time to do it again—not just your anniversary or Valentine’s Day. Do it sometimes for no good reason at all. Or isn’t keeping your marriage alive reason enough?
God expects you to romance one another.
Drink waters out of your own cistern, and running waters out of your own well. Should your springs be dispersed abroad, and streams of water in the streets? Let them be for yourself alone, and not for strangers with you. Let your fountain be blessed and rejoice in the wife of your youth. As a loving hind and a pleasant doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times, and be ravished always with her love. Prov 5:15-20