For the present Weekly Photo Challenge: Beloved, I’d like to introduce you to my precious family.
When I first saw the theme, I thought of my beloved mountains. Oh, how I love to visit the mountains! They take my breath away with their ever changing scenes and seasons.
But I also love the water—all water: waterfalls and cascades, oceans and lakes, rivers and streams, ponds and pools, and even a nice hot bath once in a while….
And then there is the sky—a panorama of sunrises and sunsets, of shooting stars and distant planets, of clouds and rain that refresh and replenish the earth, and that lovely moon that waxes and wanes with perfect regularity, reminding us of the passage of time.
But what would all these things be without someone with whom to share them? And though I have friends—precious friends, dearly beloved friends—I have learned that all too often friends come and go, like the moon. But my family, for better or for worse, is here to stay, until death do us part. My family, especially my immediate family, sees me on my best of days and on my worst of days, and they love me still. I see them too, on their best and worst of days, and I choose to love them.
I am a part of those who came before me, and my children are a part of me. My husband and I were made one in the presence of God and many witnesses, and together we are learning to give and receive love and acceptance.
So today I celebrate my family.
Closing Thoughts on Beloved
The Song of Solomon is one of the most beautiful love stories ever written. Look at just a few verses:
Song of Solomon 2:3 As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.
Song of Solomon 5:16 His mouth is most sweet: yea, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.
Song of Solomon 6:3 I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine….
Song of Solomon 7:10 I am my beloved’s, and his desire is toward me.
This love story is an analogy of the relationship between Jesus Christ (the husband) and the church (the bride). Although I do love the mountains, bodies of water, the sky, my friends, and my family, there is one person who is beloved above all, and that is my Savior the Lord Jesus Christ. He is my Beloved. He is mine, and I am His, forever. There is no greater love than this. I do not love Him enough, but He could not love me more.
The preceding verses, taken from the Song of Solomon, expressed my love for Christ. But what about His love for me?
Romans 9:25 As He said also in Hosea, “I will call them My people, which were not My people; and her beloved, which was not beloved.”
Ephesians 2:4-10 But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, has made us alive together with Christ, (by grace you are saved;) And has raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.
1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knows us not, because it knew Him not.
1 John 4:9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.
1 John 4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God has to us. God is love; and He that dwells in love dwells in God, and God in him.
1 John 4:19 We love Him because He first loved us.
Do you know how much God loves you? Even if you have not believed on Him, He still loves you. He loved all of us before time began. There is nothing you can do to make Him stop loving you. This does not mean you have a guaranteed ticket into heaven, but it does mean that God provided a way for you to enter heaven and escape the damnation of hell.
John 15:13 Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Please accept His love today.