Thursday, February 21, 2013

"On Fire": "Young Women Called Her Happy. Queens and Slave Women Also Praised Her." (SOS 6:4-9)


"My darling, you are as beautiful as the city of Tirzah, as lovely as the city of Jerusalem, like an army flying flags. Turn your eyes from me,because they excite me too much. Your hair is like a flock of goats streaming down Mount Gilead. Your teeth are white like sheep just coming from their bath; each one has a twin, and none of them is missing. Your cheeks behind your veil are like slices of a pomegranate. There may be sixty queens and eighty slave women and so many girls you cannot count them, but there is only one like my dove, my perfect one. She is her mother’s only daughter, the brightest of the one who gave her birth. The young women saw her and called her happy; the queens and the slave women also praised her."---Song of Solomon 6:4-9(NCV)

I must admit that although I enjoy country music and therefore, I knew who Mindy McCready was, I wasn't really a fan per se. So, when her life tragically (and I mean *so tragically*) came to an end on last Sunday, I was kind of surprised that it affected me so much. I think it was just that her life was filled with so much *cyclic pain* and to kill yourself in the same way and at the same place (literally) as your boyfriend did just a month prior while leaving two little boys, now without their mother behind...oh, it was just so sad. Yes, pain is very sad.

However, it wasn't until I read an article that featured some quotes by her ex-fiance' Dean Cain that I knew it was time to pen the next "Song of Solomon" series installment:

"'I'm saddened to hear of her passing, but I'm not surprised,' says Cain, 46, whose starring role in TV's Lois & Clark ended just as he and McCready began their relationship in 1997.

They lived together and were engaged, but things imploded after a year. From his Los Angeles home on Monday, one day after McCready fatally shot herself, Cain struggled to remember any joy to their relationship: 'I can't paint too pretty a picture. She would start arguments, start drama. Things weren't allowed to be good.'

Though drugs and alcohol would later send McCready to rehab, Cain said neither was a factor in their relationship – or its demise.

'She was never abusive or addictive with me, but red flags were everywhere,' he says. 'I saw all the bad signs and told her to get out.' At the end, he says he fled his own home for a hotel to escape her. 'Everything she did was a manipulation of sorts. She would just get combative.'

In the decade and a half that followed, Cain, who fathered a son with a subsequent girlfriend and is single today, severed all ties with McCready."

Again, pain is sad. When a man who once loved this woman looks back on his journey with her, he remembers that she would *start arguments* and *start drama*. He remembers that *there were red flags all over the place*. He remembers that *she was manipulative* and *she would get combative*. And it got so bad that he severed all ties with her.

I know women who fit this kind of description to a "t". I call them "damaged goods" because while there tends to be a lot of good in them, they are loaded down with so many issues that they make it really hard to love them. From their tainted point of view, nothing is ever really their fault and every person they are in a relationship with should have to take the emotional weight of the lack that they experienced before that person ever came onto the scene. Yes, some women are wondering where their husbands are and God, with his infinite wisdom and mercy, knows that until the healing of their brokenness transpires (Psalm 147:3), they won't be much help to a man. Again, the Hebrew word for helpmate (Genesis 2:18) is Ezer Kenegdo and that translates into *lifesaver*. It takes a strong and healthy woman (not a perfect woman but a healthy one) to be able to take that kind of responsibility on.

And one of the signs of being healthy is being happy.

That's why, of all that the Shulamite's beloved said about her in Song of Solomon 6:4-9, what jumped out at me the most was that last line: "The young women saw her and called her happy; the queens and the slave women also praised her."

There are some wives in my life who are on "complaint restriction" with me (and they know it-LOL-Philippians 2:14). I mean all they do is whine about their marriages and talk about how much they wish that they were single. I know it's oftentimes discussed how much single women covet married ones, but honestly, I'm starting to think there is a "spiritual virus" going around that shows signs of married women wanting what *we* have. Hmph. No wonder King Solomon was divinely inspired (2 Timothy 3:16-17) to pen that there is a time and season for everything (Ecclesiastes 3). When you're in your particular season, you need to embrace it for what it is. Coveting is a sin (Exodus 20:17).

And besides, when you're so unhappy with your life that all you do is talk about how dissatisfied you are, it tends to be a bit contagious. As believers and/or disciples (John 17), we have a responsibility to not be dishonest about our emotions but responsible in how we relay them to other people.

So for me, I have "duly noted" the fact that the Shulamite's man was impressed with her physical appearance (um, obviously-LOL), but something else that he took special note of was the fact that *other women* enjoyed being around her.

Exactly. If a man is godly, he is going to operate from a place of extreme discernment (Proverbs 2) and that means he's going to observe how *other women* respond and react around the woman he is contemplating being around. And in this case, "he" noticed that young women found his beloved to be happy. When you're happy, you're content (and Hebrews 13:5 tells us to be content so obviously being happy is a command from the Word, which is Adonai-John 1:1). When you're happy, you're full of joy and as I've been sharing with a few people in my space, when you look at the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), the attributes go in the following order: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.

A lot of single women are not *at peace* with being single and a big part of that is because they don't make having *joy* a priority in their lives (shoot, for that matter, they don't make self-love one either!). Yet, as we can see, one indication of having the Holy Spirit, of having *divine help* (John 14:26-AMP) is that we will be full of joy. This is a part of what's so special about when Nehemiah said "'Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.'” (Nehemiah 8:10-NKJV) And when you think about it, no wonder Satan tries so hard to keep our spirits down about our circumstances. There is *godly strength* that comes with *having joy*; in having "the emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally good or satisfying; keen pleasure; elation".

Yes, yes. Doesn't all of that tie in nicely? When we take great delight in knowing that God is exceptionally good and satisfying, there are wonderful results that come from that. Indeed, Psalm 37:4(NKJV) says "Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart." The Shulamite's beloved didn't say that because she had him, she was happy. He said that he observed that other people found her to be happy; that joy was a part of who she was and in connection to that, her heart's desires were granted. One of them being, having an intimate relationship with him.

It doesn't stop there.

It's one thing to have young girls observe you. It's another thing altogether when royal woman do. The verse also says that queens and slave women---women from all walks of life, both rich and poor, both famous and not well-known, praised her. Most of us know what Proverbs 31:30 (NKJV) says: "Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised" and I can't but help to assume that a part of what these women saw in her was that she feared the Lord. Fear, in this context, is "reverential awe, especially toward God".

Now here's the thing about being in "awe of God". It's not something that you can simply *claim* to be. No, your actions will be a dead-on indication of if you are really in awe of the Most High (Genesis 14:19) or not because it's defined as being "an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like".

I don't know about you, but I've been overwhelmed before and it usually caused me to take some kind of action. The emotion has had me so full that I simply have to *do something*. If you have a reverential fear for God, it's going to show in your actions and a godly man? He is going to take notice...*everyone is going to take notice*.

Sometimes we are so focused on getting a man's attention when a good one is looking to see how you capture the thoughts of others. Bottom line, that last line in these verses speak to the Shulamite woman's reputation and as Proverbs 3:3-4(Message) tells us: "Don’t lose your grip on Love and Loyalty. Tie them around your neck; carve their initials on your heart. Earn a reputation for living well in God’s eyes and the eyes of the people."

How happy are you?

Do you live a life worthy of being praised?

Definitely some things to think about.



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