To celebrate my 22nd wedding anniversary this week, I’d decided to go down memory lane by sharing the mysteries and amusements of my courtship days with my three very assertive children while also planning a surprise lyrical-poetic date with my husband. #Spontaneous.
I wanted to challenge myself with that epic romantic charisma of Abishag, a certain biblical sister who knows how to step up her game and keep her man complete! (oh yeah, King Solomon’s beloved).
To fester excitement, I began searching through my garage for reflections, until I eventually came across an old box labeled ‘old pictures and letters’. With great expectation like that of Pip, but a lurking resentment of someone delving into a hornet’s nest! I dived into the pile. Oh boy, am I in for a surprise?
There I found my memorabilia of poems and short stories, collection of blurry old pictures stored away from over three decades starring back at me.
I felt guilty.
Then a pang of helplessness, like I have abandoned treasured friendships and memories to decay away in dusty old boxes. Urgh!
And, that’s when I saw it. Tucked away as if waiting for this day to declare its long-denied benefit! I pulled back the musty flaps and slid out what appeared to be so long a love letter!
Scribbled fragile treasures of pure declaration! Intimate words of sacred devotion from the heart. Romantic gratification of pampering words, carefully expressed through the mighty power of a common pen and paper put to work!
Oh my world! Such alluring hot raps!
Pile of Hallmark cards, love letters, created since ’1994. Carefully-cursived to illustrate a lover’s desire! Coherent selection of diction that emphasizes outpour of affection from my then boyfriend, now turned husband, with his pictures deliberately taken from L’fait studio after a patterned haircut from Choices Barber to tinkle my fancy and probably keep others at arm length.
I decided to share with my children…
Oh, what a scene! The kids started with that mocking ‘Aww… ‘so cute…
Then they burst into laughter…
“This-is-so-lame! So torturous! Who does this? the kids exclaimed with such an annoying exaggeration! ‘This is so archaic! ‘Were you guys in some form of Shakespearean poetry class? Why not send a text or a cute emoji to express yourself instead of writing a book! ‘There are over 1000 emojis to describe that speech” they exclaimed! Less poetic but extremely apt.
So, many of us still have over hundreds of letters, poems, pictures with friends taken over decades of youthful discovery all stored away in casual boxes, collecting dusts, enticing molds, just like mine. Some shouldn’t be part of us anymore, some will be needed to bring the spark back into our love/sex lives, while some, we keep to remind ourselves of what love can do on crummy days.
Don’t you think the Song of Solomon is a lot like those letters hidden in the box I found in my garage? Nicely tucked away between the introspective book of Ecclesiastes and the prophetic book of Isaiah is a work of poetry that memorialized mutual attraction, romantic love, sexual desire, and enduring marriage between a man smitten and a woman bedazzled.
To convince these kids, I devoured the pages of the Song to discover what the couple did to make it work. Well, after almost 3 decades of thinking we know it all in our marriage…’What I saw was that they flirted and fought, made out and made up, served and savored, and never stopped exploring new ways to keep their marriage fresh.
The Shulamite in the Song was a wise woman who took deliberate action to keep her marriage strong. Sauntering up to her husband as he’s overseeing the fields, whispering in his ear, Her warm breath teased his neck, Flirting with him still.
‘Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages.
Let us go early to the vineyards to see if the vines have budded, if their blossoms have opened, and if the pomegranates are in bloom, there I will give you my love.
The mandrakes send out their fragrance, and at our door is every delicacy, both new and old, that I have stored up for you, my beloved. (Song of Solomon 7:11-13).
Oh dear…I didnt just cook these up folks, because God made sure it was in the Bible for a reason. I don’t think it took too long for Solomon to change his schedule, cancel his meetings, and pack his bags to hang out with her!
Why is it that passionate romance routinely fizzles out over the years? Hallmark romantic cards has been replaced a single speechless or invisible social message! soul mate so easily becomes a roommate? Why does the rapid heartbeat of excitement in the early years morph into the heavyheartedness of disappointment in the later years?
There are many reasons why passion cools, but it doesn’t have to. That certainly isn’t God’s plan. He has a much different desire for our passiona and sensuality in marriage.
Do we understand that sexual intimacy will change as we grow older. Hormones wane. Libido lessens. Stamina decreases. Bodies don’t always cooperate. Acrobatic moves decreases. That’s a given.
But I believe intimacy can grow and mature into something sweeter, deeper, and more profound than any clothes-ripping frantic frenzy ever could be.
Today, if you are reading this, ask what’s your/my Shulamite Woman Challenge? and who can satisfy the last aching abyss of the human heart?
Are we still in awe or astonished at how creative our thoughts can be when expressing ourselves? Can our words carry volume and live long after us? Life schedules, challenges and sophisticated social networking devices replaced the fun-fare of meaningful expression?
Our love/sex Lives comes caffeinated with surprises. Modifications. Transitions. Alterations. Dispositions. And with the changes, we realize that every confidence, every affection, every devotion that is not based on a personal relationship to God will be reprobated, not only in the experience of the individual, but in the history of the world. Overtime.
I am hoping someone reading this will become more Shulamite-like through the lessons of pateince, consistency and perseveance, while love finds its root!
Yours in HOPE as I share Alicia Keys – No One