If you are wondering which one you are, bride or warrior, you are actually both. As a follower of Jesus, we are His Beloved, yet we are called to walk as good soldiers of Christ, enlisted as His soldiers and dedicated to His cause. "Therefore, endure hardship, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. " 2Timothy 2:
WHO IS MY BELOVED? Simply and without hesitation, my beloved is Jesus Christ! When we look at the word "beloved," it is defined in the dictionary as someone who is "dearly loved."
Listen to just a few synonyms for this word. They are: darling, dearest, precious, worshiped, revered, sweetheart, and esteemed. There are many more listed as well. Yes, He is dearly loved by me! More importantly, He dearly loves YOU!
This verse is taken from one of my favorite books in the Bible, called Song of Songs. It's a story about a divine romance from the heart of Jesus Christ to His bride, which is the Body of Christ. This book is a work of art. It is a melody sung from His heart for His longing bride. He longs for you!
This amazing story is about HOW Jesus makes his bride beautiful and holy by casting out her fear with PERFECT LOVE!
Did you catch that? The perfect love, part? How couldn't you? I capitalized it for emphasis!
Everyone wants and desires perfect love. There is only ONE WAY to achieve that, through a relationship with Jesus Christ! His love is the only perfect love you will ever receive. Even if you are in a great relationship with your spouse, His love is greater!
Did you notice also, that you are considered beautiful? YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL! Let this declaration resonate deep within you.
You are not only beautiful, but His bride! Heaven's glorious Bridegroom, Jesus Christ, (the Beloved of your soul), wants to make you aware of His passion and unfailing, perfect love for YOU!
This love is unconditional! It doesn't matter what you have done, or where you have been! He loves you, no matter what!!
That's why I call Him, "My Beloved."
The Father, Son and Holy Spirit reside and encircle you. The golden glory of His love, mercy and truth, courses through your existence. The companionship of the Trinity cannot be understood with the mind. It must be welcomed and experienced with the heart.
Have you ever been standing in front of a door, wanting to visit someone and they were not opening the door? Frustrating , isn't it?
Here's what Jesus feels about unanswered doors and calls: "Behold, I'm standing at the door, knocking. If your heart is open to hear my voice and you open the door within, I will come in to you and feast with you, and you will feast with me." Revelation 3: 20
He wants a wedding feast--celebration and joy. When one feasts they are eating and drinking sumptuously. They are indulging. "Taste and see that the Lord is good," is indulging, which is allowing oneself to enjoy the pleasure of.
Jesus knocking at the door points us to the process of an ancient Jewish wedding invitation. In Biblical days, a bridegroom and his father would come to the door of the bride to be carrying the betrothal cup of wine and the bride-price.
Standing outside, they would knock. If she fully opened the door, she was saying, "Yes, I will be your bride."
Jesus today is still knocking on the doors of our hearts, inviting us to be the Bride of Christ. He is still holding that betrothal cup of wine, wanting us to fully open our lives to Him. This new, transforming, wine is awaiting His bride. It's different than the old wine. It's released to those who are fully open and completely sold out. He saves the best for last. It's in the last days He will pour out. Those of whom are sold out, will pour out!
This is where you get to know Him personally.
"This veil can be removed only by believing in Christ. Whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord." (2 Cor. 3: 14, 16) You now reflect Jesus; and you make Him smile. Enjoy Him heart to heart; no need to hide!
Our Heavenly Father is filled with joy for you. Here's what He says, "As a bridegroom rejoices over His Bride, so will your God rejoice over you." Isaiah 62: 5 Within the word rejoice is the word joy.
Maybe this will help you see it better: "They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them and sorrow and sighing will flee." Isaiah 35: 10
Look at the faces of these two who are filled with so much joy. They didn't see the wedding bill yet! Just kidding. Their eyes are focused on each other enjoying the moment.
As these pictures are being taken, their guests are awaiting back at the Reception Hall for their arrival so they can partake of the meal that is before them. Singing, dancing and rejoicing will soon follow. Let the festivities begin!
As I look at this picture, our future and our hope is displayed, as one day we will be with our Bridegroom King, Jesus, with not a care in the world. Our delight will be in each other with no other distractions.
For some of you, this lovely photo brings up memories of a love that has been lost. Perhaps, life doesn't seem this blissful now to you. The pain of a love that doesn't exist anymore, accompanied with divorce, has separated you from the one whom you thought would be forever.
Can I say there is ONLY one who will love you with an everlasting love that will never change. He will not abandon you, nor hurt you. He has promised to be with you always.
If that's you, give Him, your Bridegroom King, this hurt and disappointment, and watch Him restore you. Let Him restore you to your rightful place--In Him.
In Him, is a place that requires nothing more than a willing heart that says, "I am yours, and you are mine." Nothing or not anyone can steal this from you. His covenant of love for you and His rejoicing over you will never get old. Jesus will get old with you, but His love for you will never grow cold.
This is the one relationship in our life that never will change. He is constant, forever and doesn't ever change. Embrace His love for you. Embark with Him on a divine journey of Him being your true love, your best friend, your forever partner. This union is amazing!
Laying down what we thought our life would look like, allows our hands to be free to receive what is before us--a life in Him, for Him and to Him. He has promised that "Our times are in His hands." Psalm 31: 15 When our times are in His hands, we are "hands off" on our own manipulating. Freeing our hearts, frees our hands to give Him our times and give Him control.
"Come to your royal position for such a time as this." Esther 4: 14 Whatever happened or what was meant for harm, "God will intend it for good." Genesis 50: 20 If you are worried about your kiddos, let Him reassure you, "Don't be afraid. I will provide for you and your children." Genesis 50: 21
In time, "He will appear a second time." Hebrews 9: 28 He is coming back for His Bride. See yourself with your Bridegroom King, your Beloved, as He renews and restores you. His love never fails, neither do His promises!
Ephesians 5:21-33 should never be used as ammunition to keep women in submission to abusive men or to demand that they respect someone who is disrespectful. Using scripture in that way is spiritual abuse. This passage is about mutual, life-changing, empowering love. It's about being in a Spirit-Guided relationship between wives and husbands. Let's look at it.
"Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body. As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one. This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband." (Ephesians 21-33)
Headship According To Jesus
A major concept in the Ephesians 5 passage is the statement that the husband is the head of the wife. Paul compares it to the way in which Christ is the Head of the church. If husbands are to follow Christ’s example, we must ask, “How did Jesus demonstrate to us how to be the head?”
Paul also said that husbands are to love their wives as Christ loves the church. What does that look like?
Headship is not about who has the most power and control in the relationship. It’s not about who gets to be the leader and decision maker, or who gets the last word, and who is relegated to the lowly position of the powerless follower.
Headship is about the power of sacrificial love; it’s about high self-esteem revealed in a servant’s heart and with an attitude of humility. It is strength demonstrated in meekness and it is about self-control instead of controlling others. True headship elevates the other to a higher status than their own. That is what it means to be the head in a relationship. Apostle Paul tells husbands to love like this in Ephesians 5. He knows the power of love because it transformed his life to be the man God intended him to be so he could walk out his purpose and advance the Gospel.
We are seated with Him in heavenly places, which is a position of honor, not a place of shame.
What goes through your mind with this title? Of course, a wedding of two becoming one.
Yes, in our reading Paul is speaking of the love of a husband for his wife, He says, "For we are members of his body. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh." (Ephesians 5: 31)
This phrase of "becoming one flesh" is more than a husband and wife relationship. It's about a marriage, yes between Jesus and His Bride, the church. It's about being His undivided and devoted, beloved. It's about faithfulness in their devotion to one another.
Many I know are single, either by their own choice or from another's decision. If there is loss, whatever the loss is from, Jesus feels that loss and is comforting you. This time of the year doesn't make it easy either.
If it makes anyone feel better, Jesus is our husband! He's not only our Maker, but He's our promise-keeper. He won't disappoint, nor be unfaithful. His very names are, "Faithful and True."
Yet, he understands unfaithfulness. His children disregard Him all the time. His arms have been extended out to Israel, His chosen, and they were so rebellious. Rebellion is certainly not a thing of the past.
The Lord's desire is to "Present her (His Bride) to Himself as a radiant church without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless." (Ephesians 5: 27)
The Bride is perfected and made pure, as He is holy and pure.
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