*Disclaimer: I did not get a tattoo. I value my life too highly to die at the hands of my mother at such a young age. But admit it, you saw the title and you wondered if maybe, just maybe…*
…Yet my Lord, the Lamb, through power divine
Myself He chose His bride to be,
And crowned me queen in bliss to shine,
While days shall endure eternally.
Dowered with His heritage all is she
That is His love. I am wholly His;
On His glory, honour, and high degree
Are built and founded all my bliss.
– Pearl (Written in the late 14th century by an unknown poet who lived in the West Midlands of Britain.)
As someone who loves poetry and occasionally dabbles in it herself, I was really moved by this anonymous author’s take on being the bride of Christ. I’m not gonna lie, dear reader. As a person of the female persuasion, being a bride someday sounds like “fun,” to put it in the plainest terms I could imagine. But I think it’s easy to forget that I’m pursued and loved by a God who desires my whole heart. How can I give 99% of myself to him when he gave above and beyond 100%?
As a home schooled student, one of the most amazing parts of my day is having a Bible study with my school’s entire student body every morning. A lovely, blonde-haired faculty member has been leading us through the Gospels this year and I’ve learned a lot about Christ’s character. But this morning, as we were discussing some of the parables in Matthew, Will kinda got this funny look on his face (I call it “the ponder-er,”) and said, “Think about it: how could you depart from someone who saved you?” I didn’t really know how to respond. First off, having your kid brother ask you a question of that depth is pretty awesome, and he since when does he use “depart” in everyday discourse? I mean, seriously, that’s rather poetic! And secondly/most importantly, there’s really no answer that justifies ever walking away from the Lord. Let that soak in and sting for a moment until you get uncomfortable… These next two verses bring encouragement and a challenge. We’re delightful in the eyes of the Lord. But we ought to be asking Him to examine us daily.
As a young man marries a young woman,
so will your Builder marry you;
as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride,
so will your God rejoice over you. – Isaiah 62:5
Test me, LORD, and try me,
examine my heart and my mind;
for I have always been mindful of your unfailing love
and have lived in reliance on your faithfulness. – Psalm 26:2-3
One word that has always grabbed my attention is the Hebrew word Beulah, meaning “married.” Being the hopelessly romantic teenager that I am, I write it on my hand all the time. If I was brave or foolhardy, depending on your stance, I’d probably get it tattooed on my arm or something. But I’m not brave or foolhardy (?), so you may breathe a sigh of relief. But instead of letting it remind me of the person who’ll come waltzing into my life one day to sweep me off my feet (and he will be waltzing, mind you, if not leaping through the air or flying… ahem, anyway), it’s become my way of remembering that I’m already a part of the greatest relationship I could ever hope to have. It would be foolish for me to ever walk away from it because it has saved me- He has saved me! And in His saving love, I’m secure. So in reality, I’ve got Beulah tattooed on my heart…