In the movie Le Week-end a couple revisit the Paris of their honeymoon after their kids have flown the nest. At one moment the wife turns to the husband and asks, ‘Once the kids have gone, what remains of us?’ Paris is the last word in love. The city of light. A place of easy charm. But the weekend does not go well, reality must be faced, and reality is a country full of memories, regrets, mistakes and grudges.
The film The Love Punch is also set in Paris, though it’s a very different vehicle to Le Weekend, a crime caper by a divorced couple who may or may not get back together. At one point in the film the wife says ‘Love is easy to fall into, liking is much harder. Think of your wedding as a driving test. You take it, you pass, then you really start to learn how to drive.’
We read very little about falling in love in the Bible. The Song of Songs is an ode to passionate love, and in 1 Samuel [18 v 20] we discover that Michal has fallen for the new giant-killer-on-the-block, David. And that’s about it. But the Bible does talk a lot about compassionate caring. The picture of God and people is one of a wedding. Isaiah [61 v 10] talks about us being like a groom or a bride, dressed up and honoured by the God who cares about us. ‘Love is patient, kind, not proud,’ Paul writes to us, as he encourages us to do our best to emulate the prodigal’s father, the one who throws a feast to welcome us home.