Sexual desires are hard to control. Intimacy with another is how we are made. Those under forty or maybe fifty years old may find this tough to fathom, but there was a time when abstinence before marriage was not only the right thing to do, but it was a sign of respect for the object of your desire and accomplishing abstinence meant you were strong, not weird. Waiting was just as challenging as ever, but more socially acceptable.
Do not arouse or awaken love
until it so desires. Song of Songs 2:7; 3:5 and 8:4
The passage above was often used in lessons to church teens and sermons to encourage waiting until after marriage to have sexual intercourse. But using the passage for that purpose does not align with my treatment of the Song of Songs as an allegory for the love between Christ and his followers. Yet, if you look again at the phrase, “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires,” you will see that it must be important, because it appears three (3) times in the book.
As in earlier posts, I admit that I am NOT a Biblical scholar. I admit that I considered skipping over the passage until I realized it appears more than once. You do not have to be a Biblical scholar to know that any phrase a writer uses more than once must be important. So, what does this have to do with Christ and his Church?
I looked to the context of each to see if there was a clue as to its importance. In chapter 2, the first mention of the phrase, the words are preceded by the beloved bride speaking of her needs and desires and how her kingly lover could more than aptly meet them. It is followed by the appearance of her lover. It is spoken to the Daughters of Jerusalem.
In chapter three, the beloved is longing and searching for her lover and she gives this charge to the Daughters of Jerusalem after he finds her.
In chapter eight, she wishes they were twins and were children, never separated and kiss him freely and sharing kisses and meals. He finds her after she charges the daughters of Jerusalem with the phrase.
I hope I do not insult you to lay out the similarities – 1) She is in need of his company and comfort, 2) She searches and he finds her, and 3) she charges the Daughters of Jerusalem to not arouse love until love is ready. I think point number 2 is the catalyst for understanding this charge and how it can apply to our lives – she searches and he finds.
We seek love. We seek peace. We seek the perfect life. We seek answers. We search for it in many places, in many things, and in many methods. Then, Christ finds us. He has been coming to us, preparing us, and wooing us until we think we discover Him. What we discover is that He comes at the right time and everything we desire is met.
The longer we keep seeking and trying to work everything out, the more lost, confused, and empty we become. There is temporary contentment in some things or some people, but eventually it no longer satisfies and we seek some more.
Christ followers fall into this pattern, also. Our own human habits are hard to break. Nevertheless, after we wander around awhile, the One Who Loves Us Most finds us and we find what we were looking for. Very often, waiting on Him is as difficult as waiting to satisfy our sexual desires. It may even be more of a challenge depending on what circumstances life delivers.
God encourages us to come to Him. He encourages us to seek and we will find. But that time frame between coming and seeking and his acting and answering can be almost intolerable. It often spawns fear, discouragement, and even distrust in the One Who Loves Us Most.
If we remain faithful and not lose our heads or heart, at the right time and in full measure, our desire will be met and with more pleasure than we ever expected.
I write about what I'm thinking or what I've imagined in an effort to regain that childhood imagination and marry with my many years of real experiences. I'm getting better at it the more I write.I am a published author of two romantic intrigue novels.My books can be found at Amazon.com or if you want a personalized copy, by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.