A few days ago, I had the opportunity to participate in a discussion on Facebook about whether or not love is needed within a marriage. There were many great points made but the question had two camps. The first group believed that love wasn’t needed in a marriage. All that is needed for a marriage to work is respect, character, honesty, communication etc. and that a marriage based solely on love has a chance at failure. I can understand their point. If one wants as little issues as possible in a marriage, then there must be honesty within the marriage, communication that is as transparent as possible, a respect of each others spirituality, sense of humor, shared goals, and a willingness to reflect on your role and the impact of your actions in the marriage. Understand that there are countless other traits that contribute to a marriage that works. But that is simply it: a marriage that works. These same factors are good for any working relationship; this is because marriage is a working relationship.
The second group believed that love plays an important part in a marriage and must be present. The above traits may be the gears that turn within the marriage but love is the engine. Marriages are traditionally supposed to be indissoluble and it is the love within the marriage that makes it so. Love holds a marriage together; it’s the cement. It is what allows for a much richer experience. It forces one to want to make the marriage work, to endure economic hardships, to become a caretaker in sickness, and to deal with a person’s imperfections while trying to correct your own. In order for a marriage to work, you need the traits for a good working relationship. In order for a marriage to be worthwhile, love must be present.