Faithful. I heard the Lord speak this word into my spirit as I bowed in prayer. At the start of every new year, I ask Him for a word, so I was delighted when I heard this.
As I meditated on the one-word description of my Bridegroom Jesus Christ, several characteristics came to mind. He is:
- Faithful to love us first, “We love Him because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19 NKJV).
- Faithful to love us without reservation or condition, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8 NKJV).
- Faithful to bring us into fellowship with other believers, “God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:9 NKJV).
- Faithful to forgive us of our sins, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9 NKJV).
- Faithful to complete the good work He has started in us, “Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6 NKJV).
- Faithful to protect us from the evil one, “But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one” (2 Thessalonians 3:3 NKJV).
Jesus’s faithfulness got me thinking about my responsibility. Am I faithful to Him? I have to admit, in the final analysis, I fall way short of my goals there. Most of the time I am, but there are times I am not. I am guessing it is the same with you, my friend. None of us live perfect lives, and this includes our commitment to the Lord. As much as we want to be exemplary, sometimes we won’t make that goal. The Bible says “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23b NKJV).
Let’s face it–mess-ups are guaranteed! And that includes you and me. There is no perfect person except for our Bridegroom Jesus Christ.
Love, when we have lost sight of our Beloved, rest assured He has not lost sight of us. He still loves us. In fact, His love is constant at all times. The prophet Hosea records our Bridegroom as saying, “I will betroth you to me forever … in lovingkindness and mercy; I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness” (Hosea 2:19b NKJV).
The steadfast love of the Lord never changes. However, if we read further in this chapter of Hosea, we see the Bridegroom waiting for His Bride to return so He can show her His steadfast love. There’s the sticky point–if we are not experiencing His love, it might be because we need to position ourselves to receive our gentle Groom’s love.
We see this same principle applied in Song of Solomon. We find Beloved, but only if we look for Him. We say to our lady friends, “If you find my beloved, that you tell Him I am lovesick.” (Song 5:8b-9 NKJV) The result? Just like Hosea expresses the Bridegroom’s readiness to show His lovingkindness to the Bride He already loves, He is ready to take us back because we’ve asked for His rescue.
In the next two scenes of the vignette, we see an exchange of praises (see Song 3-4). We compare how Beloved is superior to all others, and this is followed by Beloved complimenting us, showing us how we are like no other. We center our thoughts by praising Him, and we can then hear His voice pointing out what we are doing right. This goes a long way in helping us to be more faithful to our Groom, who is undoubtedly our first love.
Our Bridegroom values us more than we can think or imagine even though He knows fully there are times He will need to fetch us. He eagerly awaits our readiness for His rescue. He does not condemn us; instead, He meets our praise with praises of His own, knowing that as we praise Him we heal, and this praise-exchange brings us into the very throne room of God.
If we’ve struggled at times with being faithful, it is likely our friends have experienced this same struggle. How can we help them? We tell the maidens, “I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem … Do not stir up nor awaken love until it pleases” (Song 2:7 a, c NKJV). In other words, our best plan is to remain in Beloved’s love, but if and when we wander, we can return to Him through praise, and continue in this state, not breaking from praising Him until we are in His presence, and then we should praise Him even more in order to anchor our commitment. We repeat this advice to our friends in two other places of the vignette which shows the supreme value of praise (see Song 3:5; 8:4).
Journeying towards being faithful is a progressive work in any believer. We are a work in progress, and so are our friends. Remember the biblical solution of praise so you won’t get stuck in guilt. The solution to unfaithfulness is to return with a repentant heart and that through praising the One who knows our whole story and loves us anyway.
Bride of Christ, always remember the title Beloved gives you. Your name is “Love.” You are His wife. And if our very name is “Love,” then this indicates we have a responsibility to shepherd those in our sphere of influence into the faithful love of the Lord. He commissions us to spread divine love to every person and to woo them into the right relationship. It does not matter how many times a friend has fallen short. Jesus is not keeping count, so we mustn’t either. What matters is to be committed to the charge not only to be faithful but to help believers to do the same.
How we accomplish this has nothing to do with nagging, cajoling, or setting standards they nor we cannot follow. (If I’m remembering correctly, I have been unfaithful in applying the basic ten.) What is effective, is knowing how much Jesus loves us, and from the overflow of this love-experience, to share the peace we have in knowing Christ. We can also share the confidence He has that we’ll to make it, not because we or our friends can do everything right, but because the Faithful One does, and abiding in His love is the source of our strength. Because of what He has accomplished and who He is, He perfects the yielded Bride.
Our journey began with an undeserved kiss only the Bridegroom possesses, but one that is fully ours as we lean in to receive it. … The world needs this kiss of peace, and He is counting on us to give it away.~Diane Virginia, author of The Kiss of Peace: A Contemporary Exploration into Song of Solomon
Our journey began with an undeserved kiss only the Bridegroom possesses, but one that can be fully ours as we lean in to receive it. Beloved first kissed us with peace, demonstrating His faithfulness and His love, by dying on Calvary’s cross, and rising again, victorious over death, hell, and the grave. He continues in His heavenly abode, and through the Holy Spirit, to share His eternal kisses of divine peace.
Now it’s our turn. As we abide in our Beloved, we must be faithful to share this same spiritual kiss to the lost, the saved, the unfaithful, and the faithful. It is in this way that we will draw all men into the bosom of our worthy Savior, “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people unto Myself” (John 12:32 NKJV).
If you’re wondering if your message matters, let me share a glimpse into my testimony. I learned a song way back in Sunday School that stuck in my craw, the two times, as an eight-year-old girl, an uncle took me to church. I’m sure you know the song, so sing it with me, Love. The opening line is “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so…” I wondered for years if this really could be true. Jesus loves me? Me? He loves me? Years later, the melody still played in my mind and this helped me to accept salvation for myself. Those words I learned because an uncle was able to take me to church finally rang true in my spirit and I pressed into my Bridegroom’s love. I’ve never regretted that life-changing decision. I thank God for those who evangelized and discipled me. Love, someone is waiting to hear the truth about Beloved’s love. Are YOU willing to share with them that Jesus loves them?Bride of Christ, let’s get to WORK. We are commissioned to be as our Bridegroom is, “faithful.” #KissofPeace #VineWords #MyFaithfulBridegroom Click To Tweet
Bride of Christ, let’s get to WORK. We are commissioned to be as our Bridegroom is, “faithful.” Because we have been transformed by His kiss of peace, we have a responsibility to share His message and make “Brides” as our gift to Him. Jesus’s departing words were, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28 19a NKJV). We have been given His authority to do so through our Bridegroom’s divine kiss of peace.
How can you best reach the person the Bridegroom is commissioning you to share His love with?
My faithful Bridegroom, Thank You for Your unfailing love. Help me to faithfully share Your love with everyone in my sphere of influence, being grateful for the mercy You have shown me.
Copyright 2021: My Faithful Bridegroom: Diane Virginia: All Rights Reserved
Meet Our Contributor
Diane Virginia (Cunio) is an award-winning author, and the founder/ director of VineWords: Devotions and More. She is an ordained minister, holding credentials since 2005.
Diane’s book, The Kiss of Peace: A Contemporary Exploration into Song of Solomon (Mount Zion Ridge Press),won The Sparrow Award, Second Runner Up, at the Asheville Christian Writer’s Conference 2019. The sequel, Behind the Veil: Becoming the Ascended Bride of Song of Solomon, is in the works.
She has developed the model for motion-activated musical prayer centers for use in the garden retreat, themed to the places where the Bride of Christ travels to in the allegory, Song of Solomon. She envisions these prayer gardens to serve as refuges for seekers and believers alike where they can tarry, worship, and find or deepen their relationships with Jesus Christ.
Diane is a co-editor, co-compiler, and contributing author to Love-Knots: Stories of Faith, Family, and Friendships (VineWords Publishing).
Diane is published at Answers2Prayer, Christian Broadcasting Network, Christian Devotions Ministries, Faith Beyond Fear, Inspire a Fire, Pentecostal Publishing House, PresbyCan Daily Devotional, The Secret Place, VineWords: Devotions and More, and other ministries.
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