The following is a devotional that speaks to how often I over demand from my spouse and the correlation between those demands and my lack of intimacy with the Lord. Often I try to substitute for God's intimacy by demanding more of those around me and that often leads to failure. Perhaps when you feel that way you may want to think of the prayer written by Scotty Smith, Pastor at Christ Community Church, Just a little advice to go!
“I belong to my lover, and his desire is for me.” –Song of Solomon 7:10
Dear Lord Jesus, it’s the weekend in our culture in which red hearts, overpriced cards, dark chocolates and cut flowers abound — Valentine’s Day is upon us. For some, it’s a day of incredible kindness, sweetness and gratitude. For others, it’s a day in which brokenness, loneliness and emptiness are magnified. For all of us, it should be a day in which are deepest longings for intimacy and connection find their way home to you, Jesus, the consummate lover.
I praise you for how generous you’ve been to me, in giving me rich tastes, tangible expressions, and a sensate celebration of genuine love in my marriage. There have been times when I have wondered how heaven itself could hold more joy than what I have known with my spouse…
But I equally praise you for showing me, time and time again, that no one human being (or any number of them)… no human romance story… no torrid love affair can possibly fill the vacuum in my soul that’s uniquely Jesus-shaped. Even the best marriage is two broken people, two redeemed sinners who will ultimately not be enough for the other.
Grant me, no, grace me with a deeper and richer experience of belonging to you, Jesus. You’re the ultimate Spouse. I know this, but I want to know it. One moment I believe you truly desire me, and in the next I am filled with disconcerting unbelief. It’s in those times when I am not alive to your pursuit of me, love for me and delight in me that I place unrealistic demands on other relationships. Instead of a steward, I become a user of others. Instead of a servant, I take up a scorecard to measure them by my expectations. Forgive me and free me from all such nonsense.
Let me love as you love me, until the day my betrothal becomes the day of great banqueting — the Day I long for more than any other… the Wedding Feast of the Lamb. So very Amen, I pray, in your tender and tenacious name.