The Flavor Of Love
by Damainion Ewell
As you gather up every picture frame on display throughout the house, you see precious memories of days and years gone by. Family picnics, sporting events, trips to the circus, and even outings to the amusement park that scared the dickens out of you. White teeth are a marvel to behold, especially the ones that are missing from mouths of the children. Your eyes gaze endlessly at the kids standing in front of the monkey bars, swinging up dangerously high in the swing set, and your child’s first baseball practice. All of the pictures with you and the children have been strategically placed to make the obvious not so obvious.
You look at more family pictures, and the ones you dread the most finally make their way to the top of the pile. It is you and your mate during happier times. The love in your eyes glistens like the North Star, and sparkling is the anticipation of what is to come. Everything in your lives is a yes. Is he the one? Yes! Is she the one? Yes! Will I happily stroll away from every vile temptation that comes my way for the experience of one more night of wedded bliss? Yes! Is her storm my storm, and more importantly, will I be her umbrella? Yes! Is his trial my trial, and more importantly, will I hold him up and down until the trial is overcome? Yes! Will he be my everything, even when we have nothing at all? Yes! Will she be my all, even when all seems lost? Yes! Will she be my love and soul’s sole longing even if she lie dying in front of my eyes? Yes! Will he be my example of togetherness and intimacy, even if he is falling apart in the shadows? Yes!
Am I willing to run an extra mile when the first mile just would not do? In unison, your eyes said yes. Am I willing to sacrifice all, all for the purpose of sacrificing for each other? In unison, your smile said yes. Am I willing to stay in the race, no matter who can outrun us or who hits the finish line first? In unison, the holding of your hands said yes. Am I willing to give my life at the drop of a hat, without hesitation and on a moment’s notice? The white dress with the long train and the double-breasted tuxedo symbolized a yes. Am I willing to take the burns of the fire so that the other will not even smell the smoke from afar? The two-carat princess cut platinum diamond that ornamented the union shimmered a yes. Am I willing to swallow the bitter pill of pride, as to not hold back a morsel of what my love has to offer? With the first kiss as husband and wife, the skipping beats of your hearts pitter-pattered a yes. You drop your head, and suddenly….
You fling every picture across the room in a fit of rage, chased with agony and mixed with confusion. What a deadly concoction! What in the world just happened?
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men”(Matthew 5:13, NKJV).
You come to the dreadful conclusion that you are no longer in love. You have held on for a long time by the skin of your teeth, praying for a brighter day that never came. You have held on by the tiniest thread, crying for a change in the climate that never came. You have held on to the memories of love that have passed away in the innermost chambers of your spirit. Love was supposed to be the sweetest taste your tongue has ever experienced. But, you are experiencing a truth that impales you in the gut time and again. The truth is simple: living a life without love is like adding salt to a meal that has no flavor. Salt in a relationship is symbolic of the flavor and usefulness that each other brings to the table. Without the flavor that the salt brings, it is only good to lay out on the sidewalk to break the ice. Once the ice is broken, the walk may not be as slick and hazardous, but the salt is dirty and of no good use to anyone.
“Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh” (James 3:12, NKJV).
Love is not just a form of existence. It is not stagnant or stale, and it is in a state of constant movement and elevation. Love is supposed to take you to heights unknown and to places unseen by the nakedness of your eyes. By definition, love is “a strong, positive emotion of regard and affection,” and the strength of it will hold up the axis of the earth if necessary. Without love at the root of the relationship, the flowers that spring forth will wither away. Without love as the flotation device, the relationship will drown in the deepest trenches of the sea. You cannot have any semblance of affection if love is not center stage. Maintaining a healthy, emotional and nourishing relationship without love is as futile as trying to pick oranges off an apple tree. There is simply no way to keep up the fallacy that love is just what is seen on the surface. A smile can simply be a camouflaged frown. The twinkle in your eye can be crystallized tear that has been stuck too long to fall. The holding of the hands can be a discovery that the hands you hold still has a pulse, much to your disdain. Much like scratching a lottery ticket, once you scrape away the dust that covered up the truth, you have found that you have no matches anywhere.
As you grab the broom and dust pan to pick up the fragments of a life that once was, you look at broken glass. The pieces are broken in big chunks, which can easily be solved if it were a puzzle. You place one piece of glass on the table, and one after the other until the glass puzzle is solved. All that remains are the cracks that symbolize the brokenness of the relationship. Who threw it across the room to be smashed in pieces? Why are there cracks in the glass where glass cleaner once made it shine? At one point, the glass had such a radiance that it would rival a day’s worth of sunshine. That radiance and beauty has now been reduced to cracks and chips in the glass. As you look at the cracks, it dawns on you…
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new”(2 Corinthians 5:17, NKJV).
The time has come to put away the old pictures and create an atmosphere for new memories to be made. The kids have gotten bigger since these pictures were taken. His hairline has receded slightly since these pictures were taken. Her stomach is not quite the same length and width since these pictures were taken. You must put away the memories the first honeymoon and make plans for a second one. You must put away the memories of what used to make you laugh and discover the new jokes that tickle your funny bone. You must put away the memories where you shared your first kiss and mark the spot of every kiss that is to come. Unlike certain fruit that are only sweet during a specific season, love is a fruit that is ripe for the picking all year long. During the winter, love is the warmth that wraps you up by the fireplace and snuggles you close to the point of oneness. During the spring, love is the buds that announce to the world that a beautiful flower is on the way. During the summer, love is the cool that drapes across your face as sweat beads trickle down your body. During the fall, love is the color change that makes the foliage a sight to behold.
“Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another” (Mark 9:50, NKJV).
What are willing to do to bring back that flavor that spiced your life for seemingly a lifetime? How far are you
illing to go repair the breach that the devil has so obviously devised in your life? Will you allow despondency to be the anchor that leaves your relationship in a stand still? Or, will you be bold enough to grab the box cutter and break the chains? Salt is only as good as its freshness and the purpose of its use. Old salt has an abominable stench to it, worthy of the nearest trash bag within reach. In season and out of season, love is the invigorating spice that brings salt and light to every area of your life. It may take work, and it may take re-seasoning until the taste buds sing a new song. But, in that song, there is a dance. In that dance, there is joy. And in that joy, there is a newness that would have never came unless you did the work. Love, if seasoned just right, is the flavor of life and the taste thereof is magnificent.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Damainion L. Ewell is the Editor-In-Chief of Gospel Highlights, an all-new Christian lifestyle and gospel music magazine. The magazine was launched in May, 2009, and can be viewed at http://www.gospelhighlights.com. He has been a freelance writer for almost 12 years, and his work has been seen by readers all over the world.
Damainion relocated back to the Washington, D.C. area in late 2008, and his pen is on fire for the glory of Jesus Christ. Along with his magazine endeavors, he is working on his first book, the tentatively titled “The Articles Of Inspiration,” and is enjoying the perks of being the father of three beautiful children.
Damainion can be reached via his official website: http://www.godswriter.com.