"Your lips are as sweet as nectar, my bride. Honey and milk are under your tongue. You are my private garden, my treasure, my bride, a secluded spring, a hidden fountain. Your thighs shelter a paradise of pomegranates with rare spices." - Song of Solomon 4:11-13 (NLT)
Romantic love is so wondrously mysterious and magical that we never grow tired of its myriad descriptions:
"Walk my way, and a thousand violins begin to play
Or it might be the sound of your hello, that music I hear
I get misty, the moment you're near."
"My head's under water but I'm breathing fine
You're crazy and I'm out of my mind
'Cause all of me loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections."
The Song of Solomon's poetry is an early antecedent to these classic tributes of romance. But as beautiful and majestic as all of these metaphors for love are, they can never fully exhaust the meaning and the depth of love experienced by any of us. Love is the Essence of the Everlasting, so it can never be fully captured or explained.
Yet the more we love someone the more we may be tempted to define and thereby control the nature and the dynamics of the relationship. Strong passion often places us in some rather curious power plays.
The writer of the Song of Solomon seems content to just explore and savor the wonder and the magic of love's garden. Anything else is madness.
Lord, I thank you for being able to fully enjoy that which I will never be able to fully exhaust. Amen.
Kenneth L. Samuel is Pastor of Victory for the World Church, Stone Mountain, Georgia.