Song of Songs 1:8
“Listen my radiant one,
if you ever lose sight of me
just follow in the footsteps of
Come with your burdens and cares.
Come to the place near the sanctuary
of my shepherds.
There you will find me.
My dearest one,
let me tell you how I see you.
You are so thrilling to me.
To gaze upon you is like looking at one of
Pharaoh’s finest horses–a strong, regal stead
pulling his royal chariot.
Your tender cheeks are aglow. Your
earrings and gem-laden necklaces set them ablaze.
We will enhance your beauty, encircling you with
our golden reigns of love.
You will be marked with our redeeming grace (Passion Translation).”
God ALWAYS thinks you are nothing short of amazing. Always.
God calls us His radiant one. He is enamored by you. Look at that part where the King says, “Let me tell you how I see you. You are so thrilling to me.” You thrill Jesus more than Obama thrilled Chris Matthews during the 2008 election! He is totally in love with you and entirely thrilled with you!
He chose you because he loves you (Ephesians. 1:4). He is not the sin police waiting to write you a citation! Our God, Mr. JoyBomb, is enamored by you. You are His “radiant one!” You are his “dearest one.” He cancelled the debt of sin that was yours and nailed it to the cross (Colossians 2:13-14). You are always on His mind. The Passion Translation in Psalm 40:5 says, “And you think of us all the time, thinking of us all the time with your countless expressions of love–far exceeding our expectations (emphasis mine).” He is not focused on your sin; He is focused on YOU. You are in the mind of God constantly. Misty Edwards has a great song about this.
No one adopts a child they don’t love
The Jubilee Bible 2000 says it perfectly:
“but when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons (Galatians 4:4-5).”
You are an adopted son. The cool thing about adoption is this: one day you were not a son, and the next day you were! A natural child is a blessing, but a child obtained through adoption is even more special because parents had to go through the proper channels in order to be approved to adopt the child. Adoption is also expensive. Thousands of dollars in legal and administrative fees go into an adoption. God is so in love with you that he adopted you and paid for you with his own biological son! He traded what was rightfully His for you!
Losing sight of God
In this SoS passage, the King is ministering right to the heart of the Beloved. Put yourself in the place of the Beloved because you are, in fact, the Beloved of God. God is saying to you not to worry when you lose sight of Him. Just follow the other lovers to where He is, and go there with ALL YOUR BURDENS AND CARES!
Losing sight of God doesn’t mean you’ve fallen off the proverbial wagon. It just means you blinked and He’s off up ahead. You can always run and catch up!
We are talking about meeting with other lovers of Jesus here. Whether it’s a church, coffee shop, or anywhere else, meet together. God will be found in the fellowship of His lovers (Matthew 18:20).
This Song Lifestyle is a lifestyle of love and devotion to Jesus, but it is also a commitment to living in an authentic and communal way with other whacked out lovers. I’m not suggesting that you need to sell all your possessions and build a Jesus commune. Living in authentic community looks a lot like resting with friends.
We have a vibrant house church; within that house church we have close friends with whom we do a lot of life together. We make up reasons to hang out together. And it is in those close and vulnerable relationships we have grown in Christ so much.
We don’t just go to our house church on Saturday evening and call it fellowship. It is fellowship, but the Song Lifestyle fellowship is different. Just going to church is not living the relational lifestyle Jesus calls us to. BEING the church is spending time together and doing life together. That’s where the fun stuff that starts at church begins to take shape…in our relationships. That’s where true community forms. And true community is where Jesus loves us to be! True community is where He will be found.
He loves our beauty and makes us even MORE beautiful
This part about the King looking at the Shulamite’s “tender cheeks” and her “earrings and gem-laden necklaces” melts me every time. God thinks we are truly beautiful. Think back to when you were dating your spouse or maybe you’re with someone now. You were always checking out how beautiful they were. They were IT. God thinks we are also IT. He loves us in all our shapes, forms, colors, and quirkiness. BUT–He does something pretty radical. He ENHANCES our beauty with Jesus and Holy Spirit. “We will enhance your beauty,” SoS says. “We will enhance your beauty, encircling you with our golden reigns of love.”
The Trinity surrounds us with this golden, melty, oozy love and enhances what is already gorgeous. It’s not just our physical beauty but the beauty within that is updated. In the eyes of God we are all holy super models. And He’s attracted to us like you wouldn’t believe. No, God does not think we’re hott the way you think your spouse is hott. He doesn’t want to make out in the back seat of your love mobile. That’s for you and your spouse to do. GOD is attracted to us because He created us and He likes His work!
Then something even better happens
“You will be marked by our redeeming grace,” SoS says. After our beauty is enhanced, God redeems us with GRACE. The best 5 letter word on the planet is GRACE! GLOOOORAY! “ I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believe. You did not save yourselves. It was a gift from God ( Ephesians 2:8 International Children’s Bible).”
We are marked! God has branded us with His love, devotion, adoration, grace, and power! He has placed His seal on us and He calls us Beloved! He calls us his BRIDE.
It all comes down to our calling
We are His bride. He is our glorious bridegroom awaiting a pure and spotless bride. That’s why all this happened. The scandal of His death, the joy of his resurrection, all the romance…it’s because God wanted a family and Christ wanted a bride. That’s it. You now know your calling in Christ….you. are. His. beloved. bride. 🙂