Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fidelity - What does it mean to you?

Matthew 19:5 …, 'for this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh '

Fidelity. What does that word really mean? Why is it so important in marriage? Why is it hardly used nowadays?

Just Google it and you’ll find it’s a word more widely used in financial circles than it is in relationships. Yet, the Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines it as:

- The quality of being faithful to your husband, wife, or sexual partner
- The quality of being faithful or loyal to a country, organization, etc.
- The degree to which something matches or copies something else

The first use has always been with regard to the marriage relationship. With the world becoming increasingly secular, it then included sexual partners. It is of Latin origin and it connotes such synonyms including faithfulness and trust.

Focusing on this particular definition, how does it apply to our modern day relationships? How many of us are faithful to our husband/wife? Who defines what this faithfulness means - is it simply sexual faithfulness or does it include loyalty to a spouse’s beliefs and to the couples’ cause? If it’s simply sexual, is it the physical act of sex or does it include sexual thoughts and fantasies? If our definition includes beliefs and causes- pray tell, what beliefs and what causes? Is it everything your spouse stands for or can we pick and choose them individually? For example - my wife believes in going for the earliest possible Sunday service and I will be faithful to that but weekly date nights, not so much…

How did I get to thinking about this? In all honesty, I’m not very sure. Probably has something to do with receiving a call from an ‘old friend’ recently. It got me thinking about previous ‘old friends’. Am I unfaithful to my spouse by thinking about them, recalling memories (good and bad), or even by speaking with them on the telephone? Will I be disloyal by having a harmless lunch date just to catch up on old times? Each question begets even more questions…

I’m of the opinion that while fidelity is the quality of being faithful, loyal and true, particularly sexually, I also think its definition should be fine-tuned to that particular relationship. Even in the littlest of things. My spouse doesn’t believe in ‘harmless’ lunch dates, and because I am loyal to him, I will decline such invitations and/or inform him when they arise. My wife doesn’t like it when I receive gifts from other ladies, so I submit them to her when they arrive. Could these be examples of acts of fidelity? Simple things that show your loved one that you are for them and with them in every way?

What do you think?...

Guest post from Hazel


  1. Interesting notions. I think what readily comes to mind is the biblical admonition to keep away from every appearance of evil. And a little leaven leavens the whole lump. The write-up was an extrapolation on these themes within the context of conjugal fidelity.

  2. Hello tmunis,
    I like your perspective...fleeing every appearance of evil... Hadn't even thought of that... And I almost didn't understand your expert use of grammar either...lol!


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