By Kenneth Stepp
I grew up going to church every Sunday. I remember hearing the word, helpmate, a lot in stories from the bible, it’s actually mentioned many times, in both the old and new testament. I honestly never wondered about that word at all. It was just one of many things that didn’t matter then, but matters immensely now. For a little less than 6 years now, it has been my most meaningful pursuit. I decided to Google it and see what the internet had to say about it this morning.
a helpful companion or partner, especially one’s husband or wife.
There we have it. As a single person, this seems to be a list of what is missing in my life. Have you ever really thought of what is missing for yourself? I dwell on this constantly. Not as much about what is missing, but more about what it would be like to live a life again as a partner, a couple, a “we”. Some things are obvious and easy to imagine. Two incomes makes both of our lives easier. Two struggling people merging their lives together would not only make the bills easier to pay, but sets the stage for adventure, travel, and fun. When asked what my favorite hobby is, I always say, to see things I’ve never seen before. There is a lot of truth to that statement.
As I drink in the images in my head about her, my her, my forever love. My mind goes elsewhere. My dream of her head on my chest as I hold her, getting out of bed first and making breakfast for her, I already do this for my roommate quite often. I have a servant’s heart, will she? I do wonder what she will be like. Waking on Saturday morning, having coffee together and then heading out for an adventure. Will she share my love for art? Theater? Thrift stores and yard sales? Will I adapt a love for what she loves? I’m sure I would. Sharing life doesn’t mean we have only half a life. The math of love works quite different from that.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil” – Ecclesiastes 4:9
Partners… Partners in good days and bad days, partners in adventures, journeys, and mysteries. Also partners in sickness and disease. I have written about this before, but it’s been a while. This is why real unconditional love is so important. We will have no physical roots. We didn’t buy our first home together, we have not had kids together, up to this stage of our lives we’ve not shared a thing. If two people get together and form a life and home with one another out of convenience or need, as soon as it isn’t convenient any longer, one is gone, the other is crushed. An example of this was a woman I met on my singles journey. She seemed amazing. How are you still single, I asked. She told me she thought she met her knight and they lived together for over 5 years. He became very ill. I didn’t sign up for that, she said. My heart broke when I heard those words. For better or worse had been nullified.
“In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself” – Eph 5:28
Love her as much or more than I love me. I get that. Unconditional love is the only way we, as human beings can pull that off. I have loved this way 3 times in my life. I’ve learned so much from these. First, love is a life sentence, once love exists it will always exists. Also, if she is happy, so am I. She’s happy and I’m not a part of that happiness. Her being with me has nothing to do with my wanting her happiness and preferring it over my own. I had lunch with one of these amazing women recently and mentioned this. Her life, to me, is more important than my own. Love is an amazing thing. The loyalty that comes with it will blind you to so much. Love is a gift from our creator. It’s the only Godlike trait we can attain. If real love ever comes your way. Respect it, before you decide to walk away from it, remember how rare it is. Real, unconditional love holds people together, stitched with love. We are meant to be. I cannot “not” love you. I cannot unlove you…
“What’s the difference?” I asked him. “Between the love of your life, and your soulmate?” “One is a choice, and one is not.” ― Tarryn Fisher