“My beloved spake, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs, let me see thy countenance, let me hear thy voice; for sweet is thy voice, and thy countenance is comely.” – Song of Solomon 2:10-14
I pose a question to you today. Who is your beloved? Is it you’re spouse, you’re kids, your crush? When you read through this opening passage, who do you envision it being about in you’re own life?
What we love most we will give priority to. We will give it the first fruits of our attention, our time, our energy, and our devotion. When we are in love, we put pleasing, impressing, and spending personal time with that person ahead of everything else, even ahead of our own basic needs like eating and sleeping. Likewise, when we love our kids we labor and sacrifice for them with no concern for our selves. Jesus said that the greatest commandment of all is to “love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, mind, and soul.” In other words, love Him first and love Him most.
While we may say we love God this way, we must ask ourselves: do we love Him more then our spouse, our parents, our kids, our crush, our selves, or worst of all, our things? Do we give the first fruits of our time and energy to spend personal time with Him, do we try to please and impress Him even to the point of fasting, do we labor and sacrifice for Him, putting Him and His request first in our lives ahead of all our other loves, and putting ourselves last? Or at best when we do these things do we do it begrudgingly out of obligation rather then desire, longing, and love? Take a moment to read the opening passage again, examine the passion and emotion behind it and ask yourself, who is your beloved?
“Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles. He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory. And in his name shall the Gentiles trust.” – Matthew 12:18-21
“And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” – Mark 1:9-11
If upon examining your heart today you find that you have allowed other loves to come before Jesus, or His words, request, desires, and will, then I implore you, it’s not too late, return to your first love. He is calling and waiting with arms stretched wide, that is evidenced by the fact that He has caused you to be reading this now. However, do not tarry, for the Lord will not be mocked, He will not wait forever.
“I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” – Revelation 2:2-5