We think it’s the prerequisite to lasting love. Without it we’re nothing more than roommates, moving peripherally through one another’s lives. We chase the “spark”: that elusive glimmer of attraction which, if shared, could lead to forever.
But love doesn’t need a spark to begin.
Relationships based on attraction are a cultural norm. We are drawn together like magnets, seeking physical fulfillment or the thrill of mystery. We think chasing attraction is the way to lasting love; that if we get that part right, everything else will fall into place.
We’ve got it all backwards.
Chemistry isn’t a prerequisite to love; it’s the product of love. True love is the staying power that makes attraction so strong. The magnetism of attraction increases as intimacy deepens; as our hearts – less our bodies – are bound together by common experience and time. The spark is a part of love, but it’s not the cause of it.
Chasing the spark defeats our relationships. We move from person to person, eager for that “feeling” but unwilling to commit. We don’t understand what love really is so we keep failing at it. We’re emotional thrill seekers, trying to gauge forever by the most unreliable of means. We can fix this. We can know lasting love. But we have to stop chasing a feeling and embrace what love really is.
Love is the one who stays when no one else will. Love answers the late night call and listens on the line. Love is the shoulder you cry on and the arm around your pain. Love is the slow burn of friendship and faithfulness, a fire unquenched by distance or time apart.
Love is less “the spark” and more the ember: ever burning under the surface, ready to burst into flame once you recognize its potential.
True love doesn’t need a spark to last forever. It needs people who choose love when the feelings come and go – when emotions fade, and the seasons change. True love burns slowly, but it burns brightly – and unlike the spark, it takes a lot to put it out.