READ: Song of Songs 6
THINK: “Your teeth are like a flock of sheep coming up from the washing. Each has its twin, not one of them is missing.” – SoS 6:6
So…basically Solomon tells his woman, “You’re so hot baby, you don’t even have any missing teeth.” I can’t even help but laugh hysterically when I read that. I think, as a general rule, that we too often look down on ancients and assume that they’re dumber or less sophisticated than we are when, in reality, they aren’t – at least not to the degree we tend to think. But in this case, I think modern dental hygiene outpaces them by a wide margin. Having all your teeth was apparently a rare and quite attractive thing. 🙂
But here’s the thing I love about this verse: Solomon is loving his bride through her insecurities. He wants her to know that no matter what she’s thinking or what she’s worried about and no matter where he is he loves her completely. And I think the truth is that we all have insecurities. Every human being on this planet. We have fears and faults and failures. And usually we want to hide and obscure them so that nobody will notice. Why? Because we think that if they notice they wont love us or like us or accept us anymore.
But this is a problem. Because there is something deep inside every one of us – hard-wired into us as human beings – that wants to be fully known and loved anyways. And that’s God’s design for relationships. That they would be an imperfect, microcosmic reflection of the way that he loves us unconditionally despite all of our fears, faults, and failings. And he does. In a way and at a level that is beyond our imagination.
So here’s my question for all of us: how can we love the people around us despite their failures? What would it look like for us to reflect God’s unconditional love to them in the midst of their insecurities? Who are the people around us that most desperately need us to show love and send compliments – hopefully more culturally relevant ones than “you have all your teeth” – their way?
Those of us who know God have the incredible opportunity to reflect God’s amazing, indescribable, undeserved, unconditional love to the people around us. And we know that there are people in our lives – beyond just our significant others – who desperately need to believe that they are loved despite all the things they are insecure about. My challenge to all of us is to take a page from Solomon’s book today and do what it takes to make sure they see God’s passionate love for them shining through us.
PRAY: Ask God who in your life needs to know that they’re loved unconditionally, and ask for a heart that is sensitive enough to know what to say and how to say it. Then go do it! Our world is desperate for love – and the love they really need is God’s love. We have it. Let’s spread it!