The Dancing Puritan

Sunday, February 7, 2016

14 Days of Love: Day 7: Work on the Inside

Day 1: Write a Song: Here
Day 2: Pray, Tell, Pray: Here
Day 3: Kiss: Here
Day 4: Meet: Here
Day 5: Read, Journal, Share, Remember: Here
Day 6: The 30-Day Challenge: Here


Day 7

King Solomon made himself a carriage from the wood of Lebanon. He made its posts of silver, its back of gold, its seat of purple; its interior was inlaid with love by the daughters of Jerusalem. (SOS 3: 9-11).

Solomon's carriage was designed for "the day of his wedding" (11). Built from the wood of Lebanon, shining with silver and gold, and with the royal color purple covering its seat, Solomon's carriage delievered him to his wedding in great glory. However, the most important characteristic of his carriage was its interior "inlaid with love."

A beautiful wedding service is a sight to behold. However, pomp and circumstance may delight wedding attendants, but they cannot sustain a happy marriage. Just as a lovely gown may conceal an unhappy bride, so a loveless marriage may be hidden from view by a decorative veneer.  

Your life must be "inlaid with love" if you are to love your spouse. There must be something behind your love-letters, journaling, song writing, and kisses (see previous blog posts) for your marriage to honor Christ and bless your spouse. You must work on your interior––your heart: "Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life." (Proverbs 4:23). 

Activity

Work on the interior of your life.

Private Worship: Go to a quiet place and pray. Pray with an open Bible, a pen, and a journal close at hand (See Donald Whitney: "Have a Real Prayer Closet." Here).  Alone with God, read and meditate on a passage of Scripture, and allow it to inform, encourage, and direct your prayers. 

Congregational Worship: Building an interior that is "inlaid with love" does not happen in isolation. God designed you for community. Tim Keller in his book Prayer writes "if we ponder the very beginning of the Lord's Prayer--'Our Father' . . . it shows us that we cannot know God only on our own but must do so in community with others." 

Today is the Lord's Day. It is a day for stirring up love by gathering with fellow Christians for congregational worship (Hebrews 10:24-25). 

You love your spouse when your heart is "inlaid with love." An interior of love is crafted in the closet of prayer and by gathering for worship with your local church.

Ray Rhodes is president of Nourished in the Word Ministries.