staying loyal. the core to any relationship. with friends. with family. in love. the foundation to any good relationships is loyalty. according to royce “loyalty is a virtue, indeed a primary virtue, the heart of all the virtues, the central duty amongst all the duties.” i believe this to be true. it is the most basic moral principle and every other virtue can derive from it. because of this, staying loyal is also sometimes the most difficult. it’s hard to be good all the time. especially in the world we live in where temptations are lurking around every corner. sometimes they’re simply right in our face. the margins of loyalty sometimes become blurred. and our loyalties are often pulled in different directions. but to whom is your heart truly loyal? this is the question i’ve been toying with. in my life i am loyal to my God, my husband & my daughter. and to my parents. my family & extended. my friends.
firstly, when we talk about faith. how are we truly loyal to our God? i have found myself pondering this question since church last week when we discussed grace. and how grace is such a confusing & conflicting term in the Bible. the main question being are we saved by faith or by grace? are we saved by God’s acts alone or do we also have to believe in the right things, and do the right things in our day to day life. are we forgiven without a doubt? are our sins pardoned? isn’t that what the sacrifice was all about? God sacrificed his Son to save our souls. but then we also learn we must be loyal to our God and live a moral life according to his teachings. and if we believe in faith do we believe that our paths were already set for us long before? or do we have free will to choose the direction of our lives. which role is really shaping our lives and which one are we most loyal to? i struggle with being loyal to my God all the time. I struggle with these concepts of faith & grace. i believe that somewhere in the tangled web of our best, most righteous acts combined with God’s grace and love for the world; that is where our salvation is found. i also believe that struggle is okay. that because i am struggling it means i am trying. and that my ultimate loyalty is in fact to my God. i find myself wanting to learn more & be better every day. but the struggle is inherently real. i stumble, often. and i hope that this combination is in fact what is waiting for me. that because i believe, and because i am loyal, even though i am not perfect, that i will be redeemed. i pray that i can be a good example for my husband & for my daughter. that i can help remind them of grace, even when we slip sometimes into darkness.
loyalty in marriage. it is the quintessential foundation for our relationship. it is bound by trust and love, but the concept of loyalty to your spouse is more than that. it’s choosing to make good decisions when alternate decisions seems so easy. and sometimes more fun. it’s choosing to be good and right. it’s looking at that other person and knowing you would not, could not, ever do anything to wrong them. it is not the ring on our fingers, or the certificate tucked away in our safe that binds us together. not the law. not the rules. it is our combined history that we have created together. it’s the ‘every single days’ that we have shared together for going on 9 years now. all those tiny moments woven together. and it isn’t just about choosing each other day in and day out. our loyalties lie also in our words and in our actions. i fail sometimes in my words – often for the sense of humor & the familiarness of being a class clown. in today’s culture this type of sarcastic banter is even expected. but i know personally i need to be first and foremost my husband’s number one supporter. i need to work on never letting a negative comment about him leave my mouth. to promote him. to be proud of him. to be loyal to him with my words & the way i project him to others. to always protect him, and our relationship, above all else. it is sacred and it is a gift. he has given me a type of comfort in this world i could have never dreamed of before him. a knowingness that i will never be alone.
to my daughter. my loyalties lie in protecting her. in teaching her. in loving her. she will forever be the keeper of my heart. i hope that she will know this. and realize that nothing comes before family. that her pain is my pain, and her happiness my happiness. and that everything i do, is with her in mind. she is the spark that keeps me illuminated. without her, i can’t imagine the light ever coming back. she has re-charted my course. and pointed me in a better direction.
this fierce loyalty to me is everything. the unwavering commitment to the people who make up the essential parts of who we are. it is the beginning and end of everything.