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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Husband

"Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies."
~Aristotle



Husband

These things says He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lampstands:
"I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you ... have labored for My name's sake and have not become weary. Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love."
~ Revelation 2:1-4 (NKJV)

Rejoice with the wife of your youth.
As a loving deer and a graceful doe,
Let her breasts satisfy you at all times;
And always be enraptured with her love.
~ Proverbs 5:18-19 (NKJV)

"And it shall be, in that day,"
Says the LORD,
"That you will call Me 'My Husband,'
And no longer call Me 'My Master,'
Hosea 2:16 (NKJV)


Song of Solomon is not the only place in the Bible that describes romantic love with striking language, nor is marriage mere allegory of the relationship between God and His people. Over and over, throughout Old and New Testaments, marriage and romantic love model the relationship we are to have with our Lord—our "Husband."

Jesus walks among the lampstands—His churches—and we see ourselves through His eyes. The first church mentioned, Ephesus, is like the older brother of the prodigal son, like Martha critical of Mary: doing all the right things, but missing entirely what the Lord most desires: our attentive love. And our Husband is not satisfied with the tired, stick-out-what's-been-started love, but asks for the first love a man has for the wife of his youth, and she for him.

I didn't anticipate doing Revelation when I wrote "First Love" on January 3rd. That piece posted on a Sunday, when blog traffic is light, so I'll repeat here some of what was said there:

First love is consuming. It takes over all thought, feeling, word, action.

First love is driven. It will go around or through and beyond any obstacle.

First love is empowering. There is nothing it will not do for its object.

First love is not extinguished by time, but by the indifference of familiarity and the distraction of intrusion.


If love is one soul inhabiting two bodies, then His Holy Spirit is surely put in us to unite the soul of His church to the soul of our divine Husband.

Lord Jesus, help us to remember first love, and to pour it out lavishly upon You.

Contrasting points-of-view, questions and feedback are invited. Post to
BuildingHisBody.com "Comments" or e-mail to BuildingHisBody@gmail.com. Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
#knowingGod
Image from
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11 comments:

  1. Gods love for us is ferocious. I'm not sure I could ever match its tenacity but I'll die trying.

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  2. I want to bathe in His love forever.

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  3. Because, on this earth, it is hard for me to conceive myself a blushing bride, it is easier for me to wrap my mind around the prodigal son model at the personal level ... :-) But, I get your point and agree ...

    We have God, who we have as Father. We have Christ, who, as a Church, we relate to as a bride to a groom.

    I cannot pretend to have something like romantic love for Christ ... Is that my human male nature, or pride? ... I only know that my soul is restless and that I am not complete, when Christ is not at the center of my life.

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  4. "First love is not extinguished by time, but by the indifference of familiarity and the distraction of intrusion."

    Intensity of love is like a fire. We must stoke and feed it with the necessary wood. Attention it demands. Otherwise, it will diminish to burning embers and we will feel the coldness surrounding.

    Distraction has been a nemesis of mine - much like many others. Like a magnet, I pray my heart is drawn to His presence - every moment of every day.

    Shalom,
    Denise

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  5. I'm commenting on comments today. I loved what T.Anne wrote and will echo that. And Russell's third paragraph nailed what I imagine most Christian men feel. I wonder when I hear those verses what that must be like for a man to absorb. Russell helped explain his impression and one I'm sure many men feel.

    ~ Wendy

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  6. T. Anne, hallelu-Yah we don't have to match its tenacity! He just wants it to be fresh and intense—ALL your heart, soul, mind, strength.

    Denise, I love your quips! Bathe in it ... indeed! As His blood cleanses us, bathing in His love restores us. *sigh*

    Natasa, I uber-smile at you. :D :D :D

    Denise, you've had some intense distractions. I've known that place far too many times. I'm always the weaker for it, and it seems like that's when I most need His strength. I pray for you that He will make those moments a strengthening of your "in dependence" upon Him.

    Wendy, I've long wondered when I'd finally hear that admission from a man. Oh good! I'm ready for this one. It's about to get its own reply. ; )

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  7. Russell ~

    Jesus said greatness is found in serving. Many, many leadership quotes and tweets speak of the need for leaders to lead by example. "To be a good leader you must first understand how to be a good follower." I see the same principle at work here.

    The bride's (church's) love for her Bridegroom is learned in the way we idealize the love a woman has for her husband. I say idealize because though we know what we want it to look like, I don't think we ever quite touch it—except maybe in first love. First love is the things I described a couple of weeks ago and above, but it is much more. It is driven, consuming, empowering. And in marriage, it must come down to surrender of a bride to her husband, or the marriage is not consummated.

    I believe Scripture includes evocative language such as the above passage to give us permission to appreciate what God created marital love to be. He has created something very powerful in way such love plays out, both emotionally and physically. He did it so that both men and women might understand the kind of surrender He wants from us, and the joy He intends us to have in it.

    For women, the surrender we learn in marriage is then given to God and taught by example to our children. For men, the surrender must be a gift to God that inspires their wives.

    At least that's my perspective.

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  8. Very cool post!

    And as a man, I can relate to Russel's comment. I think that it is difficult for me to feel a romantic love for Jesus, but I can relate to things like it being driven and empowering. I think that is what drives me to serve Him the way that I do.

    Regardless, this is good stuff for me to ponder and pray about!

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  9. "For men, the surrender must be a gift to God that inspires their wives."

    Thanks Anne, I got a lot out of your response. We are both on the same page. I believe Love in the next life is going to be far more dynamic and intense than most suspect.

    We only get glimpses of that now ...

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  10. Dan, I'm thrilled to have you stop by, and by the words "very cool post." I pray for you, for me, and for everyone who reads this post, that the Lord would increase our love and understanding of the relationship He has with us.

    Russell, I'm glad that even if we're not in the same time, or on the same day, at least we're on the same page.

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