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Not My Song

From Song of Solomon 6

I’m going to be honest with you. Song of Solomon is hard for me to read.

It feels like I’m peering into someone’s bedroom or poring over an exchange of letters meant for the lovers’ eyes alone. It feels over the top. Obsessive. Blind. “My dove, my perfect one, is the only one, the only one of her mother, pure to her who bore her” (Song of Solomon 6:9). “Perfect”—really?

It feels weird because it’s not my song.

I’m thinking back to moments when the exchange of letters, of glances, of over-the-top phrases was mine. When the relationship was one I was in the middle of. Then, it didn’t seem obsessive or strange at all. I didn’t question it, not even when other people pulled me aside and said, “Hey, are you okay? You seem a little caught up.” I didn’t see it. Or if I did, I didn’t care.

So now, even if I don’t like reading their love story—whoever this Song of Solomon couple might be—I can appreciate their attitude in the midst of it. I’ve been there. Felt that. And this is their moment, not mine.

Life is seasonal; Ecclesiastes taught us this. That means, sometimes the love story is ours. Sometimes, the wedding we’re planning is our own. Sometimes, the craziness, the obsession, and the excitement are ours to enjoy. But other times, they’re not.

Other times, we’re celebrating someone else’s love story, or marriage, or book signing. We’re celebrating another person’s adoption, or birth story, or promotion, or vacation. We shouldn’t be shocked by this. We shouldn’t be jealous or begrudging or annoyed. Romans 12:15-16 says, “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another.”

We’ve spent the last several weeks thinking about our own dreams and what we love and why we should be willing to pour ourselves out to go after them. But Song of Solomon reminds us that in the midst of living our lives and going after our dreams, we’re surrounded by hundreds of thousands of millions of people doing the same thing. Dreaming. Believing. Going after their dreams.

And though there are times when we’re the main act, I’m not sure we’re living life right—at least, not according to the “one another” standards God teaches in the New Testament—if we don’t also find ourselves, on occasion, sitting in the audience, celebrating someone else’s moment, and saying with the unidentified “others” of Song of Solomon, “Where has your beloved turned, that we may seek him with you?” (6:1).

You’re not wasting your time by occasionally pressing pause on your own dreams to help someone else seek theirs.

In fact, God expects you to do this. “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2). Our burdens can be trials and hard times, definitely; but also, can’t our burdens be those dreams and desires we carry inside us, those things that tug at our hearts until we find our way to fulfill them?

Help someone seek. Or build. Or create. Realize that what they do doesn’t in any way diminish or take away from what you are meant to do. God is equipping and helping you both to complete what He has started (Philippians 1:6). So encourage. Cheer. Believe in others. And give them the courage to believe in themselves.

Hopefully yours,

Author, blog, Christian

Next Week’s Reading: Song of Solomon 6:13-7:9–Psalm 3.


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