February 14, 2012
Today is Valentine’s Day, a great day to be in love. It’s so special to have the blessing of a relationship with my best friend … to love her and feel her love for me. Unfortunately though, I feel convicted because I don’t express my love everyday to my wife, Martine, like I do on Valentine’s Day. But getting back to today, we are reminded about romance. Like other holidays in our society, this one has become overly commercial, but it can still serve as a reminder to us about the beauty of true romance.
No matter how we try to describe or define it, even with the help of the best greeting card, romance remains an awesome mystery. However, as with all aspects of life, the Bible remains the real source of truth, even when it comes to the essentials of romance! In Solomon’s Song of Songs, we get a glimpse of the mystery and power of romance. In this most evocative description of romantic love, we are taught that it means intimacy, connection, and intense emotional excitement. We see how deep affection inspires desire and complete appreciation for another … that being romantic means to pursue, at all costs, the object of our affection.
Isn’t that what Jesus did? Didn’t he pursue us all the way from heaven down to a dirty manger … giving up kingship to be subjected to a bunch of inferior knuckleheaded humans … giving up His life very painfully? And the worst was being on the cross for 3 hours, enduring excruciating spiritual separation from His Father and the Holy Spirit after having been intimately and eternally intertwined with them until that point. He willingly endured all that to be in a passionate and intimate relationship with each one of us.
The book of Hosea tells how we stray towards superficial one-night stands, yet God still loves and pursues us. Oh, how He is saddened when we reject Him, just as our hearts break when we are rejected by others. (And we haven’t given Him even 1% of what He gives us.) The most important thing we learn in Hosea is that God intended romance on Earth to culminate in the unbreakable bond of married love. It is a shame how we have reduced the value of marriage, love, and sex. Instead, God wants us to follow His plan for romance … how it really plays out and fulfills us. We miss so much blessing when we stray from His plan.
Today, in addition to (or as a replacement for) the card, flowers and candy, read passages from Song of Songs to your Valentine. Our Lord and God would not have provided us with this scriptural celebration of love and romance unless He intended it to be inspiring example for us. Think about what Jesus willingly sacrificed and what God regularly does for you … all to romance you. Why wouldn’t you romance God and Jesus back? Life and your relationships are your decisions, so choose well.
Dear Father God, I thank You for the blessing of romantic attraction and the gift of love at first sight You blessed me with when I saw Martine that first night. Thanks for giving me a glimpse of Your love for me by sending her to love me. Please help me show her my love for her as a glimpse of Your love for her. I pray that all who are part of the Stepping Stones community would pursue their spouse and partner joyfully and creatively for all the days of their lives in a way that is pleasing to You. I pray this in the name of the One whom You sent to teach us how to love, Jesus Christ; And all God’s children say – AMEN!
My beloved is mine, and I am his… Song of Solomon 2:16
Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame. Song of Solomon 8:6