Thursday, January 29, 2009


Jan. 29, 2009

Outside my window...a gentle snowfall. Apparently, Toronto has already exceeded last years' snowfall amount. We're on our way to getting the most snowfall in 70 years. I would be happy to stop talking about snow, already.
I am thinking...a relatively stable political climate is a good thing. I was afraid the Liberals would vote against the budget of our minority Conservative government and either force another expensive election soon after the last one, or worse, attempt another coup, excuse me, "coalition" like they tried before Christmas. That really made me mad. They weren't voted in, so they banded together; Liberals, Socialists, and even Separatists, to try to seize power. I signed all kinds of petitions (okay two) in my outrage. It takes a lot to get a typical Canadian fired up about politics, but the public outcry was actually a good sign. We're not as apathetic as we may seem. As it stands, they are forcing the Conservatives to table a budget with forty billion dollars on make-work projects. While some infrastructure is necessary to stimulate the economy, I think during a recession, you need to decrease spending. If the average householder lost his job, would it make sense to max out his credit cards? I don't think so. This is just typical Liberal tax-and-spend policies, and they are only getting away with it, because they don't want to force an election right now, or they would surely lose, again.
I am thankful mom's recovery. She had an appointment with the Cardiologist today, and will have some follow-up tests in the near future. She plans to start her daily walks in the neighbourhood again. Hopefully she won't slip and fall and break her ribs like she did last March. :(
From the kitchen...veal stew, biscuits, and salad.
I am wearing...jeans, burgundy v-neck top.
I am reading...Just Jane, by Nancy Moser. It's a fictional look at the life of Jane Austen.
I am have a better attitude about bowling with out church tomorrow night. I always grumble about going, but then I usually have a good time. It's just that I'm not a big fan of bowling anyway, and whenever they want to plan something to do as a group, it defaults back to bowling. Friday is usually our date night, and I feel resentful about it. See why I need a change of attitude? It sounds terrible selfish of me, doesn't it? It's not like I don't get any time with my husband...
I am hearing...a soccer game between two of my favourite teams, Aston Villa and Portsmouth. I'd be happy whoever wins, but I'm happier since A-V is leading 1-0.
Around the house...I am beginning a four-day weekend. I have some shopping and errands tomorrow. My youngest daughter is finished her grade 11 mid-term exams. Both of our girls learned much earlier than we did how to study. They'll do well.
One of my favourite things...having every weekend off. That's a rare thing in the nursing profession.
A few plans for the week...clean my house on Saturday. Begin planning the party for my youngest daughter's baptism in March. Hopefully find some time to write.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Still Beating

Jan. 26, 2009

Outside my window...a freezing cold day, -22C. I even had to scrape ice off the INSIDE of the windshield this morning! The only good thing is that it's too cold to snow.
I am thinking...that while it's significant that there is now a black man in the White House, I think his coronation, excuse me, inauguration was over the top. I also think the media is having a love fest for him, expecting him to solve the country's ills. I doubt he can live up to the extremely high expectations, although they'll criticize him less and let him get away with more, just because he's a democrat. Time will tell what kind of President he'll turn out to be. I also think it's sad that so many Christians voted for him, when he's already showing himself to be very liberal when it comes to moral-ethical issues like abortion and embryonic stem cell research. While I admire much about him, I would not have voted for him, were I an American, for the above reasons. I don't believe the world's problems, or even a country's problems will be solved through politics. Countries change when one person at a time surrenders to Christ and lives for Him.
I am thankful mom's health. On Monday, she had the angiogram to investigate her chest pain. They found 85% blockage in one artery. They said they could fit her in that afternoon for an angioplasty, which is basically the insertion of a small straw-like tube into the artery to open it up and improve blood flow while pressing the plaques up against the sides of the artery. That night though, I got a call from the hospital at 11:30 saying she was having chest pain and ECG changes and they were sending her to CCU for observation. I was very concerned. The next morning they repeated the angiogram and found something they had missed the first time: another blockage of 70%. They opened it up with a wire and kept her in CCU for another night of observation. She came home on Wednesday, bruised but better. Both of her brothers had heart attacks at age 47, one had it with only 70% blockage. If they hadn't found these blockages, she may have had a heart attack. i was so relieved that she was in hospital when these complications occurred. Our Pastor visited her in CCU. My greatest concern is for her spiritual health. If not now, then some day. If not this way, another. We all have to die. She will be 69 in March. I would love to see her saved.
From the kitchen...chicken wings, perogies, salad.
I am track pants, a burgundy top.
I am reading...Searching for Spice by Megan DiMaria. It's Christian chick-lit about a woman who is looking to have a sizzling romance with her husband.
I am get my budget for the year organized.
I am hearing...Hold On, by Santana. It brings back memories of my teen years and one day in particular.
Around the youngest daughter is writing mid-term exams this week, Math and Marketing today. My oldest daughter has almost all the support she needs for her missions trip to Scotland.
One of my favourite things...a health care system that is free.
A few plans for the three nights. Go bowling with the people from church on Friday night.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Jan. 18, 2009

Outside my window...a gentle snowfall. Still very cold, but we didn't lose power for 24 hours like thousands did in the west end this week.
I am thinking...that sometime it's not good to know too much. My mom is going for an angiogram tomorrow. When I used to work on General Medicine, we used to send people for this test. It's not without risk. It's an invasive test to determine if there is blockage in the coronary arteries, and how much of it there is. They insert a catheter into a vein in the groin and then thread it up to the heart, watching on a screen as they do it. I've known of patients who have had a cardiac arrest during or soon after the procedure because a small plaque breaks off and becomes an embolism that goes to the heart, brain or lungs. I wish I didn't know what to be worried about.
I am thankful for...such a good healthcare system. My mom just saw the cardiologist on Thursday, and the angiogram is on Monday. The fact that it is happening so fast makes me wonder if the cardiologist is as concerned about the frequency of my mom's chest pain as I am. She put her on a Nitro patch and it seems to be keeping the chest pain away for now.
From the kitchen...turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, carrots, beans, and chocolate mousse pie. This was the extra turkey we got from our neighbours at Christmas.
I am wearing...a grey pantsuit and a black blouse.
I am reading...Betrayed, by J.M. Windle. It's a Christian thriller set in Guatemala.
I am mom's angiogram goes without complications, we get some answers and treatment options.
I am hearing...silence.
Around the house...I switched a shift to be off for my mom's test. She specifically asked me to come with her, and she doesn't ask for much.
One of my favourite things...our new PVR. No more missed soccer games. This might be a problem.
A few plans for the week...Go to the hospital with my mom, work three nights, clean the church, go to a friends' place for dinner Saturday night.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Childhood Games

My Timeline--1971

In grade two, I had a half-Finnish teacher. She had long red hair and was very pretty. She was single and seemed to all of us students, to have a crush on the Principal, a handsome man named Mr. Wright, of all things. We all giggled and whispered whenever he’d come to the door to visit her. He was married, though, and left the school at the end of the year. My favourite subject was spelling, and I got nearly perfect in it. I still have trouble with the words that I got wrong that year, like rhthym, which makes no sense to me.
Our singing teacher, was the Grade Three teacher. She used to teach us Sunday School songs, back before such things would be forbidden. I learned a lot of Bible stories through those songs, because she would explain the story behind the song. In opening cermonies, we used to sing O Canada, God Save the Queen, and recite the Lord’s Prayer. How different now.
Our school also held a bi-annual fun night, which I attended in Kindergarten, grade 2,4,6, and 8. I could hardly stand the wait in the interval. It wasn’t a huge production: just carnival-type games after-hours at school. Even just going to school in the evening helped make it magical. The games cost 10 cents each, and you could get prizes from the fishing pond, which was just a barrier that you put a fishing rod over. I was given a few quarters to spend, but it never seemed like enough. I say this, because the fact that this was a highlight of my life, shows again how poor we were. There was never any hope of going to Disney World, and they didn’t have play places for kids like they do now. We had to make our own fun. We played games with the neighbourhood kids: hide and seek, tag, kick the can, Red Rover, Green Green Red, Simon Says, Mother May I? War, skipping, ball games and baseball. Some kids had marbles, but we couldn’t afford them.
In my class, there was a girl, who had a bird’s last name. She also, ironically had webbed feet. If I didn’t see it myself, I wouldn’t have believed it. She had a thin layer of skin between her first and second toe, on both feet.
At that time, we had a Finnish family move into our neighbourhood. They built a large house halfway up the hill. To me, they were rich. They weren’t, of course, but compared to us, they had everything. He was a contractor, and she was a cleaning lady, or as the Finns say, a ‘leaning lady.’
My friend, their daughter, also had an unpronounceable Finnish name that started with P. They had a sauna in their house, so I was there often. I slept over a lot, even on school nights. She had a double bed with pink satin sheets. She also had a clock radio and an organ. She was very independent. From an early age, she would cook her own breakfast.
Also, most summers we would visit various cottages, or “camps” as they’re called up North. There was one Finnish family who owned a camp on the same lake as my cousin (See My Favourite Place, Vacations). This particular camp was built on a “kallio”, which is a hill made of Canadian Shield Rock. The camp was made level by being raised up on bricks at the front. It never seemed very secure to me, but then it never fell over either. The “kallio” would slope down and the mossy slimy covering allowed you to slide down into the water.
I never liked driving there as a kid. You had to park up on the “kallio” and from where I was sitting in the car, I could only see out onto the lake, and when my Mom was backing up, I thought we’d roll right off the “kallio” into the lake. It was then that I realized I didn’t care for edges. I was hysterical. My mom had to let me out of the car so she could park it in peace, while I watched from safety.
This family had two daughters. The older one was chubby and the mom always drew attention to it, by making “diet pizza” and “diet brownies” for Shirley.
The dad was very harsh with them. He kept a switch tucked into the door jamb and he would use it on his daughters for the smallest reason, and even if we were around. I was afraid of him, even though he wouldn’t have threatened us. He was so different from my father. This man never seemed happy, except when he was drunk. Then he was just plain obnoxious. Once, he tipped my teenaged cousin off the air mattress she was lying on, on the dock, making her land on sharp rocks. I think he did it because she had her bathing suit top undone, and it fell off when he tipped her over. He made me nervous that way. He wall-papered the outhouse of their camp with pornography. As a little girl, I found it quite disturbing. What kind of man, with two daughters of his own, does that sort of thing?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Paul's Pastoral Concern

Introduction to Philemon

According to the notes in my Geneva Study Bible, this is an epistle (letter) from the Apostle Paul to Philemon, a Christian brother and slaveholder in Colosse. We are basically reading someone’s personal mail. It gives us a glimpse into first century life and the Pastoral concern of Paul for individual believers and their relationships with each other.
The letter was written when Paul was in prison in Rome c.60 A.D. It may have been sent along with the letter to the Colossians.
Philemon’s slave, Onesimus had run away and had somehow met Paul in Rome. Through Paul’s teaching, Onesimus had become a Christian. Paul’s purpose in writing was to ask Philemon to receive Onesimus back, not as a slave, but as a Christian brother. In pursuit of this goal, Paul barely restrains himself from demanding the favour. He writes a powerful appeal to bring about a Christian answer to a very serious problem.
Paul’s judgment appears to be that Philemon should free the offending slave, for the sake of Christian love toward a fellow believer.
The letter was written in his own handwriting, and is much more than an example of rhetoric. We see Paul’s heart and his desire to make Christian love the first rule of human action.

More Than a Slave

Chapter One (the only chapter)

“I appeal to you for my son Onesimus, whom I have begotten while in my chains, who once was unprofitable to you, but now is profitable to you and to me.” Vs.10

He is Paul’s spiritual son because he was converted through Paul’s ministry.
Paul makes a play on words. Onesimus’ name means ‘useful’ or ‘profitable’.
Onesimus had run away, and may also have been stealing. See vs. 18

“I am sending him back.” Vs. 12

Paul wanted to keep Onesimus with him, in the place of Philemon, but did not want to do it without Philemon’s consent.
Paul appeals to the principle that a free and voluntary action is of more value than one that is compulsory.

“For perhaps he departed for a while for this purpose, that you might receive him forever, no longer as a slave, but more than a slave—a beloved brother.” Vs. 15,16

Paul seems to be saying that in the sovereignty of God, even this disobedience by Onesimus has been used by God for the ultimate good (the salvation of Onesimus) and the benefit to Paul and Philemon.
Paul seems to be suggesting Philemon set Onesimus free.

“…receive him as you would me.” Vs. 17

Paul is willing to throw his friendship with Philemon into the balance to make sure that Philemon will not refuse his request for Onesimus.

“But if he has wronged you or owes anything, put that on my account.” Vs. 18

Paul offers to pay Onesimus’ debts.
He puts his money where his mouth is.

“…you owe me even your own self besides.” Vs.19

Philemon’s conversion was also the result of Paul’s ministry.

“Having confidence in your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.” Vs. 21

Paul trusts that Philemon will do the right thing.

“Prepare a guest room.”

Paul anticipates being released from prison.
It would be something else to have him as a house guest!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Love With the Senses

I love the sound of rain.
I love the smell of freshly mowed grass.
I love the look of a baby, fresh out of the sauna or bath, with wet hair and rosy cheeks.
I love the feel of white sand between my toes.
I love the taste of baby back ribs, smothered in BBQ sauce.

Ten Things That Make Me Smile

1. Language humour, especially when people make mistakes.
2. Dead-pan, one liners, like comedian Stephen Wright does. See Favourite Comedian, Humour for examples.
3. A compliment.
4. A kindness, like when my husband actually opens the car door for me, instead of just unlocking it remotely. I'm speechless.
5. Reminiscing.
6. Seeing something through a child's eyes and hearing their observations.
7. My library. AAAAAAHHHHHHH!
8. Seeing friends I haven't seen in a long time.
9. Going on a submarine ride. See Submarine Ride, Vacations. I was smiling the whole time (well, on the inside. I am a Finn after all.)
10. When something I've planned goes according to plan, like a big party.

Things I Can Live Without

Five things many people have that I can live without are:

1. A cell phone. I hate talking on the phone. I'm usually with someone in my family and they all have one. I think four phones for five people is more than enough.
2. Jewellery. What I have is not much, but I can't say it interests me. My favourite piece is my emerald and diamond ring my husband bought for me one Christmas.
3. A fancy car. My husband takes the van to work. I take the subway. I hate driving. I appreciate the look of a Jaguar or a royal blue Mazda Miata convertible, but as long as I get from point A to point B, I'm happy.
4. A prestigious job. I much prefer a job that I love. I feel no need even to "move up" within my organization. I prefer looking after patients than doing research or working in a clinic atmosphere.
5. A lot of shoes. Really, I just don't get the shoe thing. A few pairs to match with most things, and I'm content. I'd much rather buy books than shoes.

Monday, January 12, 2009


In grade one, I was enjoying school, although all my report cards describe me as a “shy, quiet little girl”. I learned fast and my marks were good. Not knowing about many jobs for women, I alternated between saying that when I grew up I wanted to be a waitress, like my mom, or a teacher. It was also around this time that I first heard the gospel. See (My Testimony: Part One).
My grade one teacher, Miss Wightman was a good teacher, but she wasn’t as warm a character as my kindergarten teacher. One day, in the winter, my sister and I had gone home for lunch, as usual. We were latch-key kids. We had a key to the house on a piece of yarn, tied around our necks. My mom's hours of work at the restaurant were staggered, so she’d be there to send us off to school, leave lunch for us and be gone a few hours, then be home to cook dinner and then she’d be gone again after that. This resulted in my sister and I learning to fend for ourselves, or rather, for her to fend for us. I was a typical younger sister, and I let her do all the work.
Anyway, after lunch, we headed back to school. (The picture above is of that house, taken 25 years later, after new siding, windows and roof. The structure was the same, except that back then the porch had windows on three sides. The snow was typical of winters up north.) We came out the front door instead. We closed the door to the house behind us. It locked automatically. The key we had around our necks was for the back door only. When we tried to open the porch door, we found it was frozen shut by ice. We were little girls, and it wouldn’t budge for us. We were trapped. My only concern was that when we did get out, I’d be in trouble for being late. I had seen Miss Wightman’s temper against other students, and I didn’t want to experience it myself. I wanted to be well-thought-of. My sister was more concerned about how long we’d be stuck there. We knew my mom wouldn’t be coming home for a few more hours, and cell-phones were still science fiction back then, unless you counted the communicator on Star Trek or the shoe phone that Maxwell Smart had.
Anyway, our neighbour happened by and we waved frantically and shouted to get his attention. I think less than an hour had gone by but it felt much longer, and we were already feeling the cold. He rescued us and my sister started to walk to school. I panicked and started to cry. I told her I couldn’t go because I would get sent to the Principal’s Office. Back then they still used the strap and I was sure my offence was worthy of it. I was terrified. My sister told me she’d talk to my teacher and explain what happened. That didn’t console me. Again, I was dragged up the hill to school, crying and protesting. When we arrived, I hid around the corner of the hallway, sobbing, while my sister (she was in grade three), explained the situation to my teacher.
Much to my surprise, she took me in without yelling at me or sending me to the Principal’s Office for the strap. I guess she saw I had suffered enough. I took my place on the floor with my class. I was still choking back sobs while my classmates eyed me with curiosity. I was just embarrassed at that point. It was such a traumatic day, yet I clearly remember the lesson was about fractions and she had a picture of a pie that was divided into four pieces, up on the easel. I guess I remember because I was trying to concentrate on the lesson and get control of myself.

Good News

Outside my window...winter. More winter. I tossed the leftover Christmas cashews onto the deck and a squirrel is having a feast.
I am thinking...that it's been very encouraging to have some friends read the beginnings of some of my stories to help me decide which one to finish this year. Their comments have made me feel good about my writing. Unfortunately, they all have a different favourite. I guess I just have to make a decision.
I am thankful for...our upcoming vacation. My husband and I are going to a resort in the Mayan Riviera for ten days in March. I'm so excited. We've never been to a resort. I remember when we were first married and I'd see Club Med commercials and wonder if we'd ever be able to afford such a luxury. Now this week we paid off our mortgage, and booked the trip. I know we're only middle class, but some days I feel like the richest woman in the world. I am so blessed and thankful for my life.
From the kitchen...Chicken breasts, rice and broccoli.
I am track pants and a black sweater.
I am reading...Leaving November by Deborah Raney. It's inspirational romance.
I am hoping...that we get a third nurse for tonight. If we don't, it's just plain unsafe.
I am hearing...the dishwasher. I love my dishwasher.
Around the youngest daughter now has contact lenses. She's thrilled about it, but is still taking a while to get them in and out because she's a blinker.
One of my favourite things...a chocolate and vanilla twist soft-serve ice-cream cone on a hot summer day.
A few plans for the four nights (AAARRRGGGHHH!) Pick up my new eyeglasses. I ordered new bifocals that can have the sunglass clips attached so I can read on the beach when we go to Mexico. I also need to buy a few dresses for the dinners on our trip. I also need to keep writing my stories.

Happy Moments

Five moments in my life (so far) that I believe I will remember happily in my old age.

1. Our wedding day. I felt like a princess with my prince. It was a small enough wedding that we had our close friends there.
2. When I gave my husband his gift on our 19th wedding anniversary. It was a romance book I had written for him secretly over a few months. He said it was the best gift I had ever given him, because I put so much of myself into it. It also reawakened my love for writing. I said, “Hey, I can do this.” I haven’t stopped since.
3. When we celebrated my husband being five years’ cancer free. I really began to believe he’d survive and I feared recurrence much less. We also had a great big party with friends that went very smoothly.
4. When we celebrated my husband being ten years’ cancer free. Now it’s just a bad memory with lingering health effects. But at least he’s in my life, instead of just my memories.
5. The conversion of both our daughters and the joy of seeing them live Christian lives. It’s what every Christian parent desires for their child.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


By Ray Blackston

This was Christian chick-lit, written by a man. It gives the male perspective on dating and relationships. I expected this genre to be like a Seinfeld episode, "about nothing", but it was witty and insightful. When you finish it, you've come to some of your own conclusions about life.
In this book, Jay, a non-Christian stock broker, begins to attend church in a new town because he had heard it was a good place to meet women. What he ends up finding out is that most of the other singles in this South Carolina town already figured that out, and have all the churches rated, as to the best place to meet someone.
Now, on one level, I don't disagree with the practice. It's not unreasonable for Christian young people to go to places where they'll find other Christian young people, like churches retreats and conferences. Where else would they go? Bars?
However, I don't think church-hopping to find a mate is the best thing to do. The patterns you set as a young adult carry through into adulthood, and you could end up thinking the grass is greener elsewhere. It's better to find a church to get committed to and settle in. God can bring the person to you.
Otherwise you may both be doing "the circuit" and keep missing each other.
Jay meets a female missionary who is serving in Ecuador. He takes a trip to visit her and is flabbergasted by the depth that comes from simplicity. He must decide whether to stay there or take a new job in New York City.
I was also encouraged to learn that the author started his writing career because his "second grade teacher liked his stories and poems. He simply walked away from the corporate cubicle, bought a laptop, said a prayer, and began typing the first words of 'flabbergasted'. He does not recommend this method for the faint of heart."

Monday, January 5, 2009

Everyday Life

Jan. 5, 2009

Outside my window...a cold day. I'm spending the evening indoors. I drove my daughter to Hamilton this morning.
I am thinking...that I'm glad my daughter had her wisdom teeth out now while she was off school. It came up rather suddenly. Her swelling and pain are gone now.
I am thankful...for the nice dinner party we attended on Saturday night. Four couples, great fellowship, and way too much food.
From the kitchen...tacos. We can't eat roast beef every day!
I am wearing...jeans and a black sweater.
I am reading...The Man Whisperer by Rick Johnson. It's subtitled, Speaking Your Man's Language to Bring Out His Best.
I am hoping...that my dental appointment for filling exchange tomorrow morning goes okay. I'm not looking forward to it, but it needs to be done.
Around the house...I found a nice calendar at Chapters today, half-price, called The Reading Woman, and I framed one of the pictures for the wall in the library.
One of my favourite things...watching a mindless show once in awhile, like The Bachelor.
A few plans for the week...relax tonight. Work three nights. Decide when and where to go on vacation and book the time off. I was going to keep typing my stories into the computer, but this evening, I received an offer of help in doing that. Praise God! Now I can concentrate on writing the stories themselves. I had a few friends read the first three chapters of a few of them, and they have helped me decide which one to complete this year. Then it's a matter of sending it in to see if it's good enough or at least receive my first rejection letter. :(

Romance in the Bible?

Song of Solomon

A book of romance in the Bible? And steamy romance, at that! It’s definitely not a book that’s preached from often, especially in mixed company, but it’s in the Bible for a reason and can teach us a lot about romantic love.
According to my Geneva Study Bible notes, the traditional view is that King Solomon, the son of David and Bathsheba, is the author of this book and that it was written in the mid-tenth century. It’s an allegory of God’s love for Israel and the church. It’s part of the Wisdom literature of the Bible, which focuses on human relationships. The subject of Song of Solomon is marital love. It affirms the beauty of sexual love and celebrates the differences and relationship between the sexes. It reveals three qualities of love between a man and a woman: self-giving, desire, and commitment. These all reflect the greater love of God, our Creator.
Song of Solomon shows us love outside Eden, not free from sorrow, but still beautiful, and a reflection of God’s own love for us. Many portions of Scripture speak of the relationship between God and his people in terms of a marriage, i.e. Hosea, and Ephesians 5. It looks back to the gift of love in creation, and forward to the perfection of love in One greater than Solomon, the Lord Jesus Christ.
It is written in verse, as love poetry. It is highly sensual. It deals more with emotions than rational ideas. It is an outpouring of the words and feelings of people who are experiencing human, sexual love. Sex was God’s idea, and it was a good one.
There is a similar format to a drama, with many characters and exchanges between them. It is written as a romantic fantasy between the Shulamite girl and her beloved shepherd.
A refrain is repeated three times, “Do not stir up nor awaken love until it pleases.”
Between expressions of longing and the consummation, there is a dream sequence, in which she imagines her wedding night, fears losing her lover, and imagines him as a King.
There is also the realism of desire, meddling relatives, and the struggle to establish a relationship in the face of separation and hostility.
Ultimately, though, it leaves the impression that love is beautiful, and can provide deep satisfaction and contentment.


Song of Solomon
Chapter One

“Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth,
For your love is better than wine.”

This shows a delight in physical affection.

Chapter Two

“Like a lily among thorns,
So is my love among the daughters.”

He compares her to other women, and finds her superior.

“Like an apple tree among the trees of the woods,
So is my beloved among the sons.
I sat down in his shade with great delight,
And his fruit was sweet to my taste.”

She sees her beloved as an outstanding man. She fantasizes about their lovemaking. It is imagined rather than actual, despite the vivid language.

“Let me see your face,
Let me hear your voice,
For your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.”

She feels longing and misses the sound of his voice.

“My beloved is mine and I am his.” Vs. 16

She feels secure in his love.


Song of Solomon
Chapter Three

“…When I found the one I loved,
I held him and would not let him go.”

Have you ever felt that kind of desperate clinging, where you almost dare the other person to be the first to let go?

“On the day of his wedding,
The day of the gladness of his heart.”

Weddings are like that.

Chapter Four

“You are all fair, my love!
And there is no spot in you.”

She is not perfect, but she is perfect for him.

“You have ravished my heart,
My sister, my spouse;
You have ravished my heart
With one look of your eyes,
With one link of your necklace.”

He praises everything about her. He is captivated by her when she looks at him.

“A garden enclosed
Is my sister, my spouse,
A spring shut up,
A fountain sealed.”

These are images of her virginity.

“Let my beloved come to his garden
And eat its pleasant fruits.”

She invites him to unlock the “garden” of her virginity.


Song of Solomon
Chapter Five

“I have come to my garden, my sister, my spouse.” Vs. 1

The woman dreams of the consummation, and the approval of family and friends.
The lover accepts his beloved’s invitation.

“I charge you, O daughters of Jerusalem,
If you find my beloved.
That you tell him I am lovesick!”

She has a nightmare that she loses her lover.

“My beloved is…chief among ten thousand.” Vs.10

She describes him in elaborate terms

“His locks are wavy, black as a raven.” Vs.11
“His body is carved ivory.” Vs.14
“His legs are pillars of marble.” Vs.15
“His mouth is most sweet.”

Sounds good to me!

“Yes, he is altogether lovely.
This is my beloved,
And this is my friend.”

It’s a great marriage when he is both a lover and a friend.
Sometimes it’s good to list what you love about your beloved. One anniversary a few years’ back, I gave my husband a card where I listed as many of the reasons I loved him as the years we’d been married. These were character traits as well as physical attributes.

Chapter Six

“My dove, my perfect one,
Is the only one.”

Lovely terms of endearment.
Every couple should have pet names for each other, even if it’s only said in private.

“Who is she who looks forth as the morning,
Fair as the moon,
Clear as the sun,
Awesome as an army with banners?”

She is described in majestic terms.

Romantic Getaways

Song of Solomon
Chapter Seven

“A king is held captive by your tresses.” Vs.5

Men love women’s hair, and women know it.
The man fancies himself a king, enchanted by the beauty of his princess.

“How fair and how pleasant you are,
O love, with your delights!”

The woman responds to her beloved’s wooing with happy surrender.

“I am my beloveds’,
And his desire is toward me.”

She feels safe and secure in his love for her and enjoys his desire for her.

“Come, my beloved,
Let us go…lodge in the villages.
There I will give you my love.
…pleasant fruits…all manner, new and old,
Which I have laid up for you, my beloved.”

I think this is equivalent to taking a honeymoon trip or a romantic getaway. They go to a different place, stay over, and concentrate on each other. Sometimes couples need a change of venue. She is more adventurous and offers “new and old” to him, which she has planned.

The Wedding

Song of Solomon
Chapter Eight

“If I should find you outside,
I would kiss you;
I would not be despised.”

She wishes she already had freedom to show him affection in public, without attracting comment.

“His left hand is under my head,
And his right hand embraces me.”

She is dreaming of being in her lovers’ embrace.

“Do not stir up nor awaken love
Until it pleases.”

This points to the consummation yet to be.
True love waits.

“Who is this coming up from the wilderness,
Leaning upon her beloved?”

The wedding day is now a reality, and they can walk in public arm in arm.
It is an intimate and typical pose for a couple.

“I awakened you under the apple tree.” Vs.5

That is, ‘began to woo you.’
The context suggests the consummation has now taken place and they are reminiscing about how it all began.
It’s good for couples to remember and talk about early feelings. It helps to rekindle romance.

“For love is strong as death,
Jealousy as cruel as the grave;”
Vs. 6

Love is as strong as the most powerful, negative human experience.
Jealousy, in this case, is a positive zeal, that tolerates no rivals.
Marriage is exclusive and permanent.

“Its flames are flames of fire,
A most vehement flame.
Many waters cannot quench love,
Nor can the floods drown it.”

An eternal flame.

“Then I became in his eyes
As one who found peace.”
Vs. 10

The marriage relationship is (or should be) a place of fulfillment.

“The companions listen for your voice—
Let me hear it.”

The bridegroom is eager to be alone with his bride. You know how newlyweds are!

“Make haste my beloved.” Vs.14

The desire is mutual.
She invites him to come with her.

New Skills

Some New Skills I Would Like to Take the Time to Acquire, if I Had the Time

1.Archery. I would like to hunt small game, like turkeys, although I do love the taste of venison.
2.Scuba Diving. I’d get too panicked snorkeling because I can’t hold my breath for long.
3.Sign Language. When I’ve seen a sermon done in sign language it’s so beautiful.
4.Languages. In particular, Spanish and German.
5.Outdoor Survival course. Just an overnighter where you learn to build a shelter and find food. Then I’d like to come back to indoor plumbing and my duvet.