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“Your cheeks are lovely with ornaments, your neck with strings of beads.” (Song of Songs 1:10 NASB)

As we look at the Shepherd King’s[i] words toward our maiden fair we are going to see Him use dozens of word pictures. Last week we looked at an example of an image from nature, this week we see Him muse about her appearance.

He will get pretty explicit as the song goes on, and I will attempt to make some sense of how it applies to the believer’s life.

Today we start with cheeks.

What good are cheeks?

Read the Cheeks!
Read the Cheeks!

They are like the emotional thermometer God has installed in each one of us. They rise and fall with our moods, and flush and pale with our passions.

Emotions are a funny thing in the church. For many years, centuries perhaps the church has frowned upon any display of emotion. I can remember as a 20 something singing a song in church where the lyrics said “I lift my hands up, unto Thy name” and looking around to see 8 hands in the air, in a room of 150 people.

We, the Church, have a limited view of God’s emotions as well. We have a God who is happy and smiling the day we repent and come to Him, and then angry with us every day after that, because we are not walking in complete submission to His will.

This is messed up.

God created us with a broad range of emotions and passions, and they are intended to bring the most out of our lives. There are ways to experience each of our God-given emotions in a way that pleases Him.

When He looks at us, our cheeks bring Him pleasure. He sees them flushed with the thrill of His presence and raised in joy and anticipation. Our passion for Him can't be hidden.

What about these ornaments?

Ornaments are adornments made for us by skilled artisans to bring out the beauty in our cheeks.

This may sound crazy, but I believe one adornment is worship. When we worship the Lord we engage our emotions, and take the skillful work of others—Poets, Songwriters, Musicians, Artists—and let it bring out the beauty in our emotion. We let our emotions do that for which they were created – bring Glory to Jesus.

Does that make sense?

I know it helps me.

BenThanks for stopping in.

See you next week.

Ben


[i] For the purposes of this series the Shepherd King represents Jesus in our reading of the Song, and the maiden is the individual believer. You can see the discussion on this in my earlier post – “Interpretation - #SoS Saturdays

7

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

How does your trust – your faith – play itself out in your gut when you are in a struggle?

Our enemy loves to play mind games with us.

Like this – does anything like this ever happen in your life?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou feel something in your body – a pain that was not there the day before.

OR

You hear something in the office that make you think a layoff is headed your way.

OR

Your son or daughter doesn’t show up and curfew has come and gone.

OR

You have an appointment you just can’t miss, or you will let a loved one down in a big way and suddenly all the traffic stops dead.

OR

… [Feel free to add your own]

AND

Your emotions start rolling like a Ferris Wheel careening down a mountain.

THEN

A voice rises up from within you:

I thought you had faith.
Where is your faith now?
Now that you are in trouble you’re afraid.
What kind of a Christian are you?
Don’t you trust God?
…[Feel free to add the accusations that rise up in you]

David had a different view of what trust looked like.

Trust in Him at all times, O people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us. Selah.

Psalms 62:8 NASB

We know this definition of trust, don’t we? If I say to you,

“Tell me the name of the person you most trust in this world”

Who comes to mind?

Isn’t it the one with whom you can share your inner most fears and dread, your confidant?

That was the marker of David’s trust in our Heavenly Father. And so he tells us in this Psalm.

I understand that trust and faith are not exactly synonymous, but they are closely related. I can say that where there is no trust, there is no faith.

What I want you to hear today is, when your heart loses its mind, don’t allow your feelings to tell you that you don’t have faith. Don’t stuff it all inside and pretend to be a God’s person of faith and power.

Pour out your heart to our Father. It is a demonstration of your trust, not an exposure of your lack.

When there is trouble, when you need a solution, when your heart is in turmoil, God is the One who can make a difference. Bring your needs before the His throne in time of need.

Once God has spoken;
Twice I have heard this:
That power belongs to God;

Psalms 62:8, 11 NASB

Lord, teach me to come to you in times of trouble. Teach my heart to trust in you.

Ben NelsonThanks for stopping by today.

See you again soon.

Ben

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During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, - John 13:2

Who has access to your heart?

I’m not talking about God’s great blood pumping invention.

I’m talking about that part of you where discussions are made, feelings are felt, thoughts are thunk.

You know that place:
The place that tingles with anticipation.
The part of you that forgets to eat when you are in love.
The part that doubles up on the comfort food when your stress rises.
The part that pushes salty tears down your cheeks when you are moved.
The place where the big decisions are made – your personal board room.

Train Your HeartWho gets to write on your heart?

having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; - 2 Peter 2:14 NASB

Who decides on your heart's training routine? [Tweet this]

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. - Proverbs 4:23 NIV

Think on this – will you?

Ben NelsonShine today.

Ben