We did the BEST trick ever last night ... we opened all our presents on Christmas Eve so my nine year old had no reason to wake up early ... why have we never done this before.
So my Christmas morning was spent in bed catching up on a few days of devotions and blogs and actually really reflecting on the decade gone. Best Christmas morning and now we are prepping for an amazing brunch (well locally in my world if you know Gifty.. our gift in a big sister - see instagram story soon - she is prepping CREPES!!!
But today I want to talk about wine (Maybe cause it's the season!!)
Song of songs 1:2-3
Kiss me—full on the mouth!
‘Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth’ Yes! For your love is better than wine,
This sense of intimacy with Jesus that Song of Songs refers to was something this morning I woke up sensing people may not experience right now.
This world is full and fast and we can let both the challenges and successes of life distract us from what really matters! Living bold is a challenge on so many levels of our life. But one area is how present we stay.
Wine has 3 purposes and it is not all bad, but it is what we use it for that matters most.
1. Wine is exhilarating, intoxicating, stunning and useful for celebrating
Wine is speaking of the beautiful things , not the bad things, the best that the world has to offer. It is a drink of gladness and celebration and symbolic of physical health and strength. But this verse reminds us that even in the incredible opportunities that life will bring our way and even as we are wow and wooed by this stunning inheritance we will begin living in … God is still saying – don't forget my love is even better than that.
2. Wine can cloud our judgement, things become hazy and you can become detached to reality.
Yesterday we talked about leaning into your present and not numbing yourself to your reality with passion that is just ‘hype’
3. Wine can soften us, make us vulnerable, be more truthful
This verse says there is a love you can experience that is even better than wine and more delightful than any of these feelings. So how do we stay present in that love with God and others? I have a felling here is where our true inheritance lies as well.
ALLOW YOURSELF TO BE FULLY KNOWN BY GOD
1-6 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. You know everything I'm going to say before I start the first sentence. I look behind me and you're there, then up ahead and you're there, too— your reassuring presence, coming and going. This is too much, too wonderful— I can't take it all in!
7-12 Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit? to be out of your sight? If I climb to the sky, you're there! If I go underground, you're there! If I flew on morning's wings to the far western horizon, You'd find me in a minute— you're already there waiting! Then I said to myself, "Oh, he even sees me in the dark! At night I'm immersed in the light!" It's a fact: darkness isn't dark to you; night and day, darkness and light, they're all the same to you.
13-16 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother's womb. I thank you, High God—you're breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I'd even lived one day.
23-24 Investigate my life, O God, find out everything about me; Cross-examine and test me, get a clear picture of what I'm about; See for yourself whether I've done anything wrong— then guide me on the road to eternal life.
In song of songs and in this scripture there is a love that awakens her heart and allows her to become known by God so she can become more fully herself and known by others and then in turn KNOW others with strength and boldness so she can bring something of worth into their lives.
BE FULLY KNOWN BY SIGNIFICANT OTHERS & KNOW OTHERS THE SAME WAY
Your dreams and desires, those strengths and weaknesses, those vulnerabilities and fears, are you known in those areas? We so often hide behind busyness, or an outward strength, or even resentment. It takes time, effort and energy to go deeper. It requires risk and vulnerabilities. If you are a married woman I want to encourage you to create environments for brave-hearted authentic conversations. Don’t be afraid of truth or afraid of what he might share with you about his brokenness and vulnerabilities.
As a parent I am learning the power of appropriate honesty. Lets be real. Learn how to ask forgiveness, reveal our imperfections so we don’t just teach our kids theory –margins for real authentic connections.
UNCOVER the layers – peeling back the layers of hurt, disappointment, breaking of trust, abandonment, fear of rejection, complications and walls. Become easy to read and uncomplicated. Become less easily offended.
“I don’t want us to sit in small groups and all face each other and outwardly look like we are connecting – arrange our bodies in a circle but our souls are facing away from one another.
I want us to talk with each other, not merely making conversation, but to make a difference, to be caught up in another sphere, the world of the Spirit, where first things are first and second things are second. I want us to experience a kind of oneness that makes us aware of what is best inside us and all the bad stuff that blocks its release – a penetrating oneness”
Safest Place on Earth (pg 22)
Keep WOWED by people’s lives!
To be present is to not hide behind the masks – its not to hide behind the rush of life, the tasks to be done – stop and take moments – listen! Watch, respond, incline your heart beyond the whinging of a child with the quick fix of a strong reprimand and ask ‘why might they be behaving like that?’
Why do I get so much satisfaction out of tidying up and creating order out of chaos? What is in me that will prioritise it over a MOMENT with my kids or husband or God?
Look people in the eye, incline your ear and your heart from distractions.
What ‘wines’ are in your life and how can you get to a point where you can say of Gods love and of the love of the people He has placed in your life – ‘your love is better and more delightful than all those things’?
Enjoy these days with the people you love. Merry Christmas