The highest form of liberty: to choose love over liberty

The revolt against vows has been carried in our day even to the extent of a revolt against the typical vow of marriage. It is most amusing to listen to the opponents of marriage on this subject. They appear to imagine that the ideal of constancy was a yoke mysteriously imposed on mankind by the devil, instead of being, as it is, a yoke consistently imposed by all lovers on themselves. They have invented a phrase, a phrase that is a black and white contradiction in two words — ‘free-love’ — as if a lover ever had been, or ever could be, free. It is the nature of love to bind itself, and the institution of marriage merely paid the average man the compliment of taking him at his word. Modern sages offer to the lover, with an ill-favoured grin, the largest liberties and the fullest irresponsibility; but they do not respect him as the old Church respected him; they do not write his oath upon the heavens, as the record of his highest moment.

–G.K. Chesterton, “A Defence of Rash Vows

sacrifice and love


10 thoughts on “The highest form of liberty: to choose love over liberty

  1. I never thought it would, but being in a love-filled marriage has given me the greatest sense of freedom I could ever imagine. I’m free to explore my wants and desires, my dreams and wishes, and even my body and sexuality with a liberty I never had before I was married. The comfort and security of that love and commitment means everything.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is true. So many people are inauthentic. I married someone who promises were nothing more than set dressing on the elaborate stage of his lie-based life. His vows were empty words because he did not keep any of them. On the other hand, my vows were sacred to me. God delivered me from him so that I was made free from the bondage of an emotionally abusive husband. It is so sad that I was committed to my marriage to the detriment of my own health, but I was just a warm placeholder to him, never a real wife. It breaks my heart to see God’s beautiful gift defiled as it was.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so sorry about your pain, and I thank God He’s delivered you! Truly heartbreaking to think about all the people who either defile this beautiful sacrament, or settle for a parody of it.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. It is interesting to me that despite all the dark yuckiness my false-husband put me through, I can still see beauty in our wedding. I respected and had reverence for the oath I made to God and my husband; my heart was pure and trusting. God did not fail me and I treasure that He gave me the chance to show Him how much I love and honor him.

        Marriage is a special gift, not a right. Our messed up world has it backwards. I hate those “game over” shirts…it is the perfect modern example of what is at the heart of the quote you posted.

        Thank you for your sweet words of sympathy. I enjoy your posts so much.


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