What do you struggle with? We all struggle, if we say we don’t we’re liars and then we could say we struggle with lying! Seriously, we’re all human and that means we struggle with stuff. I struggle with lots of things, but my top struggles are: food, pride, criticism and lust. Depending on the day I can deal with just one of these or all of them and then some. I am weak. But Jesus is strong. And that’s my hope. I mean, if it were just me trying to be good and not deal with these issues, I’d fail over and over and over again. I already do! But my joy remains because I know that while “I am dark” I am also lovely (Song 1:5).
You see, I know my own yucky heart (sometimes I’m deceived into thinking it’s not so bad, but then other days I’m keenly aware of my weaknesses). But I also know (and am growing in knowing) that God loves me. I pray that in this writing the Spirit awakens something in us so that we don’t just glance over those words- God loves me. They are overdone, I know. But there is true, radical, life-changing power in the truth behind those words.
This truth means that even though I misstep, sin, miss the mark of God’s perfect holiness, am a sinner, have an awful heart sometimes, and am a general mess some days… He is madly in love with me. If you’re like me then you read that and have a hard time digesting it into your own soul for YOU. If you call yourself a Christian then it’s probably easier for you to say “God loves the world” or even to look at a friend who is hurting and comfort him or her with the love God has for humanity. But… what if you stop and think about you and God.
Looking at the allegorical interpretation of the Song of Solomon we see that God is madly in love with His bride and that it is an intimate, personal, passionate love. Even when you look at Exodus 34 when the LORD called Moses back up to Mount Sinai to meet with Him, He said, “and no man shall come up with you…” (Ex 34:3). God wanted to be alone with His beloved, Moses. God wants to be alone with you.
God’s love for us is unique to each of us and is intimate, so incredibly intimate. We learned in our study in the youth room that there are three Hebrew words for ‘love’ used in the Song of Solomon and one of them means ‘to boil.’ That definition when considered in light of the Jesus-and-His-bride read, is overwhelming! Christ Jesus boils in passionate love for His bride… you.
He does not look at you and out of duty say, “I love her.” Nor does He grudgingly turn toward you when you’ve sinned and say, “Well, I said that I will love him, so I had better follow through.” No! He looks at you and says, “You have ravished my heart, my sister, my bride!” And to you, He says, “Behold, you are fair my love!” His love is more intimate than we know! Oh, that we would pursue this passionate love with Him.
Our struggles are real- whether it’s lust for a new job, lust for a position in ministry, lust for a guy or gal, depression, anger, complacency or fear- they draw us away from this boiling love relationship with Jesus. That’s the enemy’s ploy, to draw us away from Love, Himself. He distracts us so easily, at least he distracts me quite easily. But Church, my prayer is that the Spirit of the living God who dwells in us and is for us and Who is in love with Jesus would fall upon us afresh, alighting upon our hearts the truth of this passionate, intimate, unique love that God has for us. We can never be done learning of and experiencing the joys, delights, and pleasures of His love.
May this be our prayer-
“[Jesus] draw me away!”
“We will run after You.”
“The King has brought me into His chambers.”