February 2012

Romantic Love 

Being in love is a wonderful thing. Yet, why is romance usually dead after marriage?  For many, why do the days of marriage seem so dull, even boring?  These are real and difficult questions. Truly, marriage is based on a commitment, but as you read the book of Song of Solomon you see that God intended the love relationships to be filled with romantic love. Solomon gives six insights to romantic love in 2:8-17.  

Be enthralled by your lover’s name (8,9)
"Listen! My beloved! Behold, he is coming, Climbing on the mountains, Leaping on the hills! (9) "My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag.” She calls Solomon “my beloved” 27 times in this book.  It is a Hebrew term that denotes a lover.  Notice her pet names: gazelle and young stag. In ancient times the gazelle was a symbol of sexual virility, and was a most complimentary term. 

Be enthusiastic about your lover’s coming (8,9)
"Listen! My beloved! Behold, he is coming, Climbing on the mountains, Leaping on the hills! (9) "My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, he is standing behind our wall, He is looking through the windows, He is peering through the lattice.” She is enthusiastic about his coming. “Leaping and skipping” implies joy and happiness.  As he is looking for her, he can hardly wait to cast his eyes upon this lovely creature. And of course, this causes her to be thrilled with anticipation. This passage shows that when you find that right person, you will be excited and enthusiastic about his arrival!  This is a clue for romantic love, if you are not excited about the person coming to you, or not sad when he or she is gone, then there is probably something wrong with the relationship.  

Be enticed by your lover’s companionship (10-14)
"My beloved responded and said to me, 'Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along. (11) 'For behold, the winter is past, The rain is over and gone. (12) 'The flowers have already appeared in the land; The time has arrived for pruning the vines, And the voice of the turtledove has been heard in our land. (13) 'The fig tree has ripened its figs, And the vines in blossom have given forth their fragrance. Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, And come along!'" (14) "O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, In the secret place of the steep pathway, Let me see your form, Let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your form is lovely."  The bottom line of these verses is that she enjoys being with him and finds it very attractive to be next to him. Out of all the people that you enjoy being with, your partner should be number one-your best friend.

Be energized by your lover’s commitment to resolve problems (15)
"Catch the foxes for us, The little foxes that are ruining the vineyards, While our vineyards are in blossom."  This is definitely not a description of a fox hunt date.  It is a commitment to work together based upon a real-life picture. The foxes are the small foxes that would get through the walls surrounding the vineyard.  It is a symbol of the little problems that threaten love, a relationship, and a marriage.  The idea is of ridding a couple’s vineyard of the small foxes that could damage the fruitfulness of their love.  Anyone who is in love, must also be committed to resolving the problems that threaten a relationship. 

Be encouraged by your lover’s loyalty (16)
"My beloved is mine, and I am his; He pastures his flock among the lilies.” This woman is encouraged by the intense and unwavering mutual loyalty.  One of the great things that bind a couple together is the sense of belonging. This belonging or loyalty produces security. 

Be excited about your lover’s time  (17)
"Until the cool of the day when the shadows flee away, Turn, my beloved, and be like a gazelle Or a young stag on the mountains of Bether." She knew that Solomon had many duties and would be away, but she anticipated their time together and could not wait for his return.  Every couple needs time alone to rekindle the romance and heighten their love. 

Romance shouldn’t be dead, especially after marriage! Our love relationship shouldn’t be dull and boring. It is each person’s responsibility to make our spouse feel loved. This month, work at rekindling your romance!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            -Pastor Mike Kotrla