The Bridegroom King And His Bride
"Falling In Love With Jesus"
It is my very fervent prayer that what I am about to share with you will help you to eagerly DIVE into the richest expression of God's fervent Love for us - that HE is the Bridegroom King and WE are His Bride. Song of Songs and Psalm 45 are just two of many scriptures that reveal what an amazing mystery this truly is.
Whether we admit it or not, this presents several problems for us. I'll be hitting this subject from several different angles because it is SO VERY IMPORTANT. But the one single thing that defused the bomb that was about to explode in my brain is the amazing paradox I will now explore.
WE or ME?
God certainly wants a PERSONAL relationship with each of us. And I don't want to set that aside for a second. Remember, two very opposite things are going to be miraculously true at one and the same time.
The Bride Of Christ is THE CHURCH. WE, together, are the Lord's Beloved! This is the PRIMARY way in which we experience what I call "Super Romance". God's SPIRITUAL romance is far above human romance. But it's not LESS romantic. It's actually more powerfully romantic in the spiritual realm. Human romance is a wonderful picture. But it's weak and incomplete. We must sharpen our spiritual senses to all he suffered in the Passion Of His Suffering Love for us. We must understand how our YIELDING - our "Sweet Surrender" to Him - makes us amazingly beautiful and desirable in His eyes.
Mind Blowing . . Yes. But We Will "Get It"
Yet with all this mystery - with all this fantastic "mind blowing" creativity - the love of God is actually expressed to us in forms we, as humans, can feel with great force. Human romance is central to everything we are. We are born as "half a person" - in one sense. A man only represents half of what humanity is really meant to be. A woman is but the other half of the one beautiful creation God designed in His infinite wisdom. And only in the union of these two amazing halves can we survive. One plus one equals . . . THREE . . . as a new child is created and brought into the world. And this wonder we call LOVE is like the heat, light and thundrous blast of the explosive combining of two opposites. This thing we call LOVE pursues our hearts from the moment of birth until the day we die. It DEFINES us.
So, yes. Mysterious and inscrutible as this mystery is - we "get it". We REALLY "get it". It it's built into our very nature like nothing else.
God IS Love. Love Defines God As Well.
And it's built into God's nature as well. God could have done anything and everything else - and remained fundamentally unfulfilled. Why? God IS Love. It is HIS very essence as well! In this, more than in any other aspect, we are created in the image of God.
We often envision eternity as a realm of incredible beauty and immortality. But what makes it marvellous? We come close when we imagine worshipping God forever - singing His praises and being amazed by His beauty and greatness. But as His bride we become ONE SPIRIT with Him. We share in His Divine Nature. And we experience Love in a spiritual way we cannot grasp with our human minds. But the intensely romantic imagery of the Song Of Songs makes it clear that we will find delights in spiritual union that go far beyond mere song - though we will make music as it has never been made before.
So is it WE or ME?
A Wondrous Mystery!
Yes, the reality of Song of Songs is primarily fulfilled with our CORPORATE idenity - with all of us as "The Bride Of Christ". But remember this is just a weak - though very intense picture - of something very special in our relationship with God. Your heart will EXPLODE with joy as when one "falls in Love". Your personal yielding - your adoration and praise - your obedience to Him as Lord . . . Are these not directly related to how He won YOU, how He conquered YOUR heart, how HE BOUGHT you with his BLOOD - as a bridegroom wins the heart of his Bride?
So you must slam these two facts together - impossible as that may be. It's WE and it is ME! You have the best of both worlds. And because this is all a SPIRITUAL MYSTERY (see Ephesians 5 for more on that), we, as spiritual people, can delve the riches of this with no real hindrance.
Hey! God authored the "Song Of Songs". It's not too TMI for HIM! So He expects us to get comfortable with the implications.
YES! You CAN fall in Love with Jesus. And the wonder of your First Love will permeate your ENTIRE LIFE. It will DEFINE you.
Read all the scriptures which talk about being "in the Spirit" and you will discover that - though we are always in Him - when we wait on Him and Yield to him we can experience the NEW WINE of the Infilling Of The Spirit. Just as a couple is always one flesh - yet would not have much of a relationship if there were no times of intimacy - just so, God is pleased when we seek Him - giving Him time and adoration. And Jesus referred to the GIFT of the Holy Spirit as a the kindest and most wonderful thing God can give. Yes! He gives us HIMSELF. And when we experience a more tangible experience of Spiritual Unity with God - we are freed from the grip of sin - as I can wholeheartedly testify.
Now here's the practical tip I promised. When you are praying . . when you are worshiping, praising and adoring your Lord . .
"I LOVE you Lord! I love YOU Lord!"
Yes, when his sufferings on the cross are brought home to us - we sort of "go off" on Him. And we make sure He hears our hearts. We make sure to bring it home to Him in a way that cannot fail to give him joy and delight.
And then you pray. You intercede. And you do so, not so much as YOU, sometimes - but from ALL of us! When you're pouring out your heart it's as though all of us were saying it.
Do you see how this puts it in perspective? And expressing OUR Love is a way to deliver the message as HIS BRIDE speaking to Him. It's not me. We all love Him!
Here's another bonus tip. Picture the apostles on Pentacost. They must have really burst forth with a real ecstatic joy. That's why they were accused of being drunk! So if you come off as being four sheets to the wind they'll probably accuse you of such things too. Some will say you're crazy.
They should be so lucky!
What Wonders Will We Encounter As We Seek The Lord?
Your intimate relationship with God during your personal time coupled with the ministry to which God has called you are taking you to places of wonder with Him that many of us have yet to experience. I love all that exudes from your writings of your experiences with Him, and I appreciate beyond measure the imagery you coordinate with your writings. It's all quite wonderful, you know!
When I'm quiet before Him, emotion intensifies. When I dance in His Spirit, there is the joy of feeling Him control my mind and body. My mind is always dancing - like when you get off a treadmill and you still feel the earth move. My teen and young adult children have to live with the scary reality that my feet won't stand still. In the grocery store . . . out on the street . . . whatever. My son says, "Dad, you MUST be a 'hippie'" - and lives with it. My daughter is more concerned - lest I be toted off in a padded van. My wife gave up worrying about me one way or the other. She'd rather keep her mind and let me take my chances with the authorities.
When I took a bus through Chicago to Tennessee I worshiped all through the night. I only accidentally smacked someone on the foot once. (People can be amazingly forgiving). But I mention this to let you know that physically bound people aren't bound - in Christ. A person could "dance" before God from a wheel chair. I'm sure of it.
I made a connection with another church, tonight. Quiet worship and praise for over an hour. And they were good to go - even tough their worship was very quiet and peaceful. WONDERFUL Christians. Very mature. Very obsessed with Jesus. Though restrained, their dance was half waltz, half ballet.
I also go to "Ground Zero" - a church that meets in a mansion 3 miles north of Auburn Hills. They go nuts. I need ROOM there so I go up on the large balcony that overlooks a three story high living room. I dance like a dervish while my wife looks over me and my exuberant friends like a life guard at the deep end of a pool. She wonders about us. But she likes it ok.
What I like is that they care for the poor by empowering them in business - all the while loving them and guiding them into spiritual healing. They are the modern day "Barnabbas" of the church in our region.
God has you right where he wants you and He IS and will CONTINUE TO delight your heart in worship and praise.