Today is the day: At 1pm Rachel and I become one.
I have been thinking long and hard about what I wanted to write today.
At first I thought I would write about my fear. There is a lot of fear in my heart about this new adventure. Not that I am second guessing it in any way, more so part of me thinks I will fail as a husband. But I decided not to write about that.
Then I thought I would write about dealing with stress while planning a wedding. I may still write that someday, but not today.
I also thought about telling the story of Rachel and me. There may come a day when I do that and pieces of that story will inevitably show up on the blog; But in the end, I do not think I should write about that.
Today there is only one thing to write about: love.
“Love is like Oxygen. Love is a many splendid thing. Love lifts us up where we belong. All you need is love!” –Christian (Moulin Rouge)
There is something about the word love that resonates with all of us. We see it in almost every movie, a major part of most books, and the best songs are about love in one way or another. And yet it is so difficult to define. Most people believe they know it when they see it, yet there are no words to describe it.
I think they’re partially right. There is something about love that is more than logical understanding. It resonates in our hearts, our minds, and our souls.
I think the closest humanity has come to properly expressing love is in the Hebrew language.
The Three Loves
In Hebrew there are three words for love. They all translate “love” in English, but they each describe a different stage in the process of love.
Raya is a friendship kind of love. It is the beginning of all love. It is not the simple act of being friends but is deeper than that. In every relationship there comes a point when you realize a person is flawed. Everyone is perfect when you first meet them but soon their issues break through and it is at that point you decide to love. If you decide to love someone in spite of their flaws you have experienced raya.
Ahava is deeper than friendship. It works a bit different for everyone. There is a moment in some relationships where you suddenly realize that you want to spend the rest of your life with the person you have been dating. It is not infatuation (which comes and goes); instead it is more of a deep understanding that this is someone you want to be with forever.
Although I don’t believe in love at first sight, I must say ahava came fairly quickly with Rachel and me. Within a few months I knew she was someone I wanted to be with for the rest of my life. I can’t explain why. My inability to answer the “why” question (and because I was fairly poor) was why I waited as long as I did to propose. God is good, though. I wouldn’t have changed what Rachel and I have experienced for anything.
Dod is a very deep love. You could say Dod is sex but it really goes much deeper than that. Yes, Dod is sex but it is not just the physical act. It is a moment when the physical body, the emotional heart, the logical mind, and the soul come together and intertwine with another person.
The thing about dod that most people ignore is its predecessors. It is impossible to experience dod without the other two loves. For dod to exist it must be underneath the umbrella of “I love you regardless of your issues (raya)” and “I love you forever (ahava)”. It is this foundation that breeds dod. You cannot have it otherwise.
A New Life Begins
Today I will look Rachel in the eye and let her know that I have chosen to love her. That at my deepest core I love her with all her flaws and limitations and that I will love her forever — both in action and in feeling. And so we will walk down that isle as man and wife and begin our life together. We will open ourselves to one another and begin to discover Dod.
After the wedding it’s straight to the honey moon! This is posting automatically and I won’t check back here for at least a week. But stay tuned because I have some cool surprises for you while I’m gone!
Thank you for being a part of this blog. You have been so encouraging as I have headed towards this amazing day. I am so glad I have been able to share this with you! God Bless.