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“But, do you love me?”

In the play Fiddler on the Roof, Tevye, the father of the family begins to think about his marriage after giving his blessing to his daughter’s betrothed.

He sees the young people in love then turns to his wife, Golde, who he shared an arranged marriage with. He asks her, “Do you love me?”

She slams down her broom. “Do I love you? For twenty-five years I’ve washed your clothes, cooked your meals, cleaned your house, given you children, milked the cow. After twenty-five years, why talk about love right now?”

Tevye shakes his head. “Yes, but do you love me?”

Golde pouts. “I’m your wife.”

“I know. But do you love me?”

To Golde’s frustration, Tevye continues to ask her until he gets a straight answer. In the play it’s a sweet and comical moment as Golde realizes that, after all, she supposes she does love Tevye and he tells her that after twenty-five years, it’s nice to know.

Although it was just a scene from a musical, the spiritual truth slapped the breath out of me. Tevye could very well be God’s voice asking me, “Do you love me?”

And I answer back, “For all my life I’ve gone to church, mentored others, led Bible Study, hosted youth group parties, counseled summer camp. Why do you need to ask me that?”

“But do you love me?”

*huff* “I’m a Christian.”

“I know. But do you love me?”

It is not a question of whether or not I should be doing things for the Lord, because I should, but why do I do them. As Christians our call is to do every action out of love for God and as a way to point towards Him. But often, I find myself doing things because I feel like I should more than as an act of love.

Jesus pulled Peter aside and asked him “do you love me?” three times. Peter had spent the last three years of his life completely devoted to Christ and doing everything that was asked of him. Yes, Peter betrayed Christ, but after all of Peter’s service, it still came down to love. Only after Peter declared he loved Jesus did Jesus instruct him to serve (feed my sheep).

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About Jess Keller

I'm an author, speaker and chocolate eater who's chasing hard after my dreams.

2 responses »

  1. Wow, what a great comparison! I, too, love this musical 🙂

    Reply
  2. Excellent comparison! Very thought provoking. Well done!

    Reply

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