“These are my life’s achievements”
As I have been reading through Bryleigh's Bible, it has brought me to the Song of Songs. I have been very interested to see what this time and entanglement will bring for my heart as I address her in writing regarding a book that Jewish boys were not allowed to read until they became men. Today, I read chapter 2 and came across verse 15. The bride says to her lover, "Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that are ruining the vineyards while our vineyards are in blossom."
As The Song can be applied to both our relationship as a bride to our bridegroom, Jesus Christ, it can also be applied to the true love relationship we have with our spouse.
These foxes are any of those things which keep us from Jesus and the life He intends for us. Catch the foxes! Remove the foxes! They must be caught and removed from your relationship with God.
But they ALSO must be caught and removed from your relationship with your spouse. This is an address to husbands! Catch the foxes! Remove the foxes. They must be caught and removed. The good marriage relationship will be one in which you both, but especially the man, DOES the work of catching any foxes which hinder your relationship and your marriage.
I wrote this in the margin of Bryleigh's Bible, and it has stuck with me all day: "If your husband is unwilling to do this sort of work, I doubt his love for you."
So many men are willing to work hard to make money for the family. They are willing to protect their wife from physical harm. I have known countless men who are unwilling to do the work of catching the foxes for their marriage and their family when it comes to the actual relationship. This will require work; uncomfortable work. Your hardest day of work may not compare to the hard work you will do in addressing those things which hinder your relationship and harm your wife to a far deeper place than any physical harm would bring to her. But if you truly love your wife and your family, you must catch the foxes! You must remove the foxes.
If you are unwilling to do this, I question your love for your wife.
It is important for me to start off telling you how much my wife and I dislike you. I imagine my daughter has told you not to worry, 'my dad does not like any guy that comes home' and she is correct, partly. She is correct in telling you I dislike every guy who comes around, but she is very mistaken to tell you not to worry. I do not like you, but it is also important for you to know I believe in grace and mercy.
These are gifts I have received a great deal of in my life. You will, with my sincerest apology, have a much harder time receiving from me what I was so freely given. And for further perspective on this matter, know that I was given this grace from One who had far less reason to give it to me than I have for you...like eternally less! You know what I mean?
What am I saying? You ought to know what I mean, or you and I should not be having this conversation.
All this being said, there are a great number of things you are going to need to know and listen to if you are to pursue my daughter; that being the first thing: my daughter is to be pursued. She is not to be conquered or won like a little boy's game. This is going to require an enormous amount of your time and even larger amount of your energy. If this is the first I have ever heard of you, you may walk away now and begin a larger and longer pursuit.
If you have been pursuing with integrity, friendship, and honor, there are now a few other things you ought to know. It is an expectation that you will one day provide for my daughter, but listen very carefully to me...
Food, shelter, and finances does not make you a provider. You are nothing more than an assistance program.
A man is to provide far more than finances. How prepared are you to provide presence? You will need to learn and prove that you know how to be entirely present with and for my daughter. Do not assume that being in the same physical space makes you present. Do you have the capacity to be present emotionally, spiritually, and integrally? If you do not, then this conversation is over and you have some work to do.
If you need to hang around a bit and watch the way I love her mother, you are welcomed to do so. Watch and learn!
Because you must understand this; if I am ever (and this remains a large "IF") to give my daughter's hand, it will only be because I place her into hands I trust will be present in at least a fraction of the way I have strived to be for her since long before you ever came around.
Still the only MAN in Bryleigh/Haddisen's life,
ps. I still dislike you
Intimacy is often defined in Christian church-talk as "Into me see". Denial of intimacy with the ones you love the most is hiding what is really inside of you. You are not willing for them to see who you really are inside, and you make all sorts of attempts to hide it all...subconsciously or not. This is not only applicable to my marriage, but to God as well. Though he already knows all that is within me, how much am I willing to reveal to him. THAT determines my desire for actual intimacy.
God, into me see!
Another great nugget is "The deeper the love, the greater the hurt." [click to tweet that] This basically means people you do not know cannot hurt you. How true if you do not know someone, you could care less what they say. But our biggest wounds and hurts are inflicted by the ones we love most.
Why does our sin hurt our God so deeply? Because he desires us and is truly in love with us. The intimate God of love is hurt deeply because he really does know us....
Why does the church hurt us so badly? Why do other Christians hurt us so badly? Why am I capable of hurting my wife more than anyone else can?
WHY IS GRACE SO BEAUTIFUL....AND TRULY HEALING?