Friday, October 14, 2011

words of wisdom

This past Wednesday night I had the honor of being taught by a very wise woman, Mrs Jan Riggs. The title of her message was "I Love God but I Still Need a Man" and discussed why women, even Christian women, seek out a fulfillment in men that can only come from Christ. 

I wanted to share a few of the highlights from what we learned. It was such a beautiful message that gave such depth to the gospel and to the way I was designed. 

One thing we discussed were some of women's deepest desires, the innate senses that drive our action. 

We want to be wooed and pursued.

We want to  love and be loved with abandon.

We want someone who values us as a priceless jewel.

We want someone who doesn't want to live without us.

We want someone who will love us so madly he would die for us. 

We want Prince Charming on a white horse.

We want happy every after. 

If we expect all of these things from a man, a boyfriend, a husband- we're setting them up for failure and setting ourselves up for heartbreak. Countless relationships develop conflict because we go in to them with expectations for our men to live up to this. 

I've come to understand that people will always let us down. We have to be ready to forgive and learn and grow together knowing that we will disappoint one another. We are human, imperfect, flawed.  This is not to say that we should not have standards by which we choose a partner, rather that our standards cannot be perfection. 

There is only one who not only wants to be all of these things to us, but completely embodies these things. He IS love. He wrote our love story long ago.

Matthew 11:28 "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest."

Isaiah 43:4 "Because you are precious in my sight, and honored, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life."

Song of Solomon 1:15 "Behold, you are beautiful, my love, behold, you are beautiful."

Isaiah 62:3 "You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, a royal diadem in the hand of your God."

Revelation 19:11 "Then I saw heaven open, and behold, a white horse! He who sat upon it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war."

Revelation 19:16 "On his robe and on his thigh he has a name inscribed, King of kings and Lord or lords. "

Revelation 21:4 "He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away."

It's only through having a truly fulfilling relationship with Christ that we can find contentment in our other relationships. 

If these scriptures don't describe enough how much Christ loves us, consider the obvious symbolism of the ancient Jewish wedding ceremony. All throughout scripture the church- that's me and you- are referred to as the bride of Christ. Understanding this cultural background brings so much depth to the analogy. 

The first part is the betrothal, during which time the bridegroom travels to the home of the bride. He negotiates with the bride's father for the appropriate price to be paid in exchange for a marriage. Once the bride price has been paid, the bridegroom drinks from the cup of betrothal and offers it to the bride. If she accepts the cup, the covenant is formed and the two are considered husband and wife. 

The second part then begins. The bridegroom leaves the bride's home and returns to his father's house to make preparations for the wedding celebration. The bride continues to live in her parents' home, but she now carries her identity as the betrothed. So she spends her time preparing herself and making herself beautiful for the arrival of the groom. Although the bride does not know when the preparations will be complete or when her groom will return, she anxiously awaits his arrival. 

Whenever the preparations are complete, the bridegroom leads a procession, along with those closest to him, to the home of the bride. He takes the bride from her home to the location of the ceremony where they vow forever to one another publicly, followed by a long and joyous party and the consummation of the marriage. 

I have taken the cup of betrothal. I am the betrothed of Christ. 

There are too many times when I find myself acting more like an adulterous wife chasing after idols.

But, I know that He is truly the only source of contentment.
And unending strength. 
And deep, bubbling up, unconditional love. 

Ladies, will you join me in preparing ourselves for our bridegroom's return? 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...