(I posted this on my original WordPress blog. It was around 5,000 words. This edition is shorter. I didn’t come up with this, either. A Rabi, friend, taught me this. I heard it again on the Dr. Laura Show.)
The Song of Songs, which is Solomon’s.
Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth: for thy love is better than wine. Because of the savor of thy good ointments thy name is as ointment poured forth, therefore do the virgins love thee. Draw me, we will run after thee: the king hath brought me into his chambers: we will be glad and rejoice in thee, we will remember thy love more than wine: the upright love thee. I am black, but comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, as the tents of Kedar, as the curtains of Solomon.
…Tell me, O thou whom my soul loveth, where thou feedest, where thou makest thy flock to rest at noon: for why should I be as one that turneth aside by the flocks of thy companions?
… I have compared thee, O my love, to a company of horses in Pharaoh’s chariots. Thy cheeks are comely with rows of jewels, thy neck with chains of gold. We will make thee borders of gold with studs of silver. While the king sitteth at his table, my spikenard sendeth forth the smell thereof. A bundle of myrrh is my well-beloved unto me; he shall lie all night betwixt my breasts. My beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphor in the vineyards of En–gedi.
…Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves’ eyes. Behold, thou art fair, my beloved, yea, pleasant: also our bed is green.
(YES, THAT’S IN THE BIBLE!)
WHEN YOU’RE HOT, YOU’RE HOT!
Apparently, Solomon and Sheba were a red hot item in Israel. Sheba came from Ethiopia to see if King Solomon was really all that. She had heard he was very wise and VERY wealthy, and maybe not all that hard to look at. After all, he IS King David’s son, and the ladies really liked King David. So, she pulled her chariot up in his driveway, dusted off, and strode to the front door of the palace. She was all prepared to challenge his wisdom, to look him in the eyes and dare him to be brilliant. She also wanted a peek at his bank account, just to make sure he was really worth the drive from Ethiopia. Sure, the palace was a wonder, but anyone can rent a palace, now days, without good credit.
Before she could knock on the door, she heard the bolts of the entry way unlocking. She set her posture in her bravest and strongest, “Ï am woman, hear me roar!” stance, fixed her gaze at about the height she figured a Jewish King would stand. And prepared herself to be the toughest gal Solomon EVER ran across.
Solomon opened the door.
She adjusted her gaze about a foot higher. Her eyes dilated, her breathing grew a bit faster, and she started sweating. “Holy COW, he IS hot!!””, Sheba thought. She did her best to maintain the strong woman posture, in spite of the fact that her knees suddenly conspired to melt like butter.
King Solomon was worse off than her. He heard someone drive up. He looked out the curtains and saw a hot pink chariot parked where HE parks HIS chariot. He thought, “Great, just what I need…another gold digging babe to interrupt my thoughts!” When he opened the door, he forgot how to speak proper Hebrew and got that stupid look on his face all guys get when they meet the most incredible woman they have ever met, and…Well, the rest is history.
They were a very special item. Solomon and Sheba were special enough that their story has been told all over the world, throughout history. You can read about it in “The Song of Solomon” in the Bible.
Great relationships are God’s idea.
It was God’s idea that Male and Female, Man and Woman, be the epitome of what a great Human relationship looks like. It was probably easier in the Garden of Eden than it is today, but you know how that went, too. God invented relationships long before the fall of man. Great fellowship, companionship, love, sex, laughter, all that that makes up a relationship is God’s invention. What we see today, is the result of a flawed and fallen view of what God invented.
Today, relationships can be tougher, because no one has any idea what one is supposed to look like, or what to look for in a potential life mate. Today, because we are not taught what to look for in a mate, we overemphasize one aspect over others. When all the fun wears out of that aspect, then what is left? Either it works out, or it doesn’t. Statistics say the odds are against it working out.
Before my daughter decides that someone is really special, I want her to know what special looks like. I am also sharing this with you, too.
WHAT MAKES SOMEONE S.P.E.C.I.A.L.?
(Dedicated to my friend, Messianic Rabi, Dani Moyal)
Following these guidelines will more likely lead you to the best relationship you have ever imagined.
S = SPIRITUAL – Make sure you both see eye to eye on what matters to you spiritually. This may not seem like such a big deal while the fire is hot, but when it cools, this becomes a hidden, but important thing. If your mates and your spirituality is not shared harmoniously, the difference will eventually add up to be hidden stress cracks in your relationship. Agreement in your spirituality is paramount. Agree to be Christians, or whatever spiritual belief you hold dear (I am a Christian, so you can bet where I lay my hopes). The hidden fractures of not being spiritually aligned create more serious problems than anyone even knows. Your Meta-view of the universe affects everything else you think, believe, say or do.
P = PHYSICAL – Yes, PHYSICAL. If you plan on being together the rest of your life, make sure you don’t need a bag to cover his or her face before you will have sex with him or her. A long lasting relationship has healthy and consistent sex. It has been proven that committed couples have more satisfying sex than anyone else. God meant for it to be fun and satisfying. Even after YEARS of practice. So, make sure you can stand to look at that person naked, with the lights ON. Remember, too. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What appeals to me might not appeal to you, and vice-versa.
E = EDUCATIONAL – CAVEAT: If you both have mastered your ego, then this will not be that big of a deal. Most people, however, are still struggling with EGO. If you have been to a college or a university, and have a great education, and wonderful memories, and your significant other doesn’t, this can be problematic as it may be intimidating to your significant other. You may eventually let the pride of life lead you to get a sense of superiority over your mate, and your mate may develop a resentment that you lord your education over him or her. You will have different sorts of friends and you will have different ideas of what it means to know something. While a good education is important, you both have to understand that, graduating college doesn’t mean you have a good education. In other words, if there is a disparity between your educational levels, you have to just get over yourselves. Otherwise, find someone who has more in common with you, educationally. It will be less stressful if you don’t have to fight that fight.
C = COMMUNITY – What does your social environment look like? Who are your friends? What is your idea of a great neighborhood? Are the people you like to hang out with the same as the people your potential mate likes to hang out with? Will your friends blend in well with your mate’s friends? This doesn’t mean you cannot have one or two exclusive friends, as long as that is not a secret. Downplaying this element of a relationship can be the death of your relationship. In the end, you both will have to choose between loyalty to your mate, or loyalty to your friends. This problem is vastly reduced if your friends are likely to get along with his or her friends. Do you agree on where you should live and how you will live. Do you have the same environment in mind? If not, your community choices can lead to disastrous outcomes. God designed couples so that they are their first and best friend, and the community you chose to live in is a shared vision.
I = INTELLECTUAL – Do NOT confuse education with intelligence. Some of the most educated people have actually been president, and they were still stupid. I have a pretty decent IQ, and a strong education, but my wife is vastly more intelligent than I am. It can get frustrating to have to wait for the light to dawn on your mate. Again, this can become an ego situation. Do you both love the same intellectual pursuits? While you are plummeting the depths of “The Iliad” in the language it was written in, does your mate think watching truck pulling competition to be the best mental stimulation in the world? What starts out as cute or adorable in the beginning of the relationship, can become the very thing that makes you want to run barking-mad up the street. Shared intellectual interests will build a very strong bond.
A = ACTIVITES – Remember that person that loves to go to Truck Pulling Contests? Do you, too? Or, do you go to the ballet, or a good opera, while he has a few beers at the local truck pulling arena? If you are going to survive as a couple, harmonizing in as many activities as possible strengthens the bond between you. It doesn’t mean you HAVE to do and like every single thing he or she does, but the more you harmonize here, the more resonant the bond is between you. Share your life with each other. Find things you like to do together and make sure you have a steady diet of doing it. This is where most of the really good memories come from. “Hey, honey, remember when we…?” THAT is the good stuff.
L = LOVE – Yes, LOVE. And yes it is at the bottom of the list. It is not the least, though. A very strong love goes way beyond what Solomon and Sheba had. Sheba eventually left Israel and returned to Ethiopia. They had separate lives, separate interests, separate communities, differing intellectual pursuits, and differing spiritual beliefs. Their sex life was a thing of legend. It was phenomenal. But as the Friar told Juliet, in Romeo and Juliette, “Even the sweetest honey is loathsome in its own deliciousness.” Trust me, knocking boots is great fun, but if that is all you have, you will eventually not even have that. In the end, Solomon and Sheba stopped being an item and became a legend instead. A strong love is built out of all the things listed above. Love is the foundation, but the ingredients for that foundation are what make a relationship special.
I want to be clear on what love means.
Love is made of 4 components.
Agape = Unconditional Love. The, “Ï love you no matter what.” That is the love God has for us. It is unconditional. Never varies. Is not affected by circumstances. It is bold and unflinchingly eternal. NOTHING can change it.
Phileo = Brotherly Love. It is not strictly a male thing, either. It is the love that says, “Even when you are a complete and total jerk, I have your back, because we are brothers/sisters.” My big brother and I were close like this. We differed in many ways, and we had our share of fights. But let anyone else come in between us, and you dealt with both of us. I have a friend who is close to me, like a brother. If he ever needs my help, no matter where I am on this planet, I will stop and help. Brothers can be counted on. Not all friends are brothers.
Eros = Erotic Love. This is an invention of God. He meant for us to enjoy this, just as much as any other type of love. What the world has turned this into is not love at all.
EGO = Self Love. God designed us to love ourselves. A strong sense of individual identity lives in all of us humans. We are all unique, just like everyone else. A warped EGO is what the world has taught us. Instead of being at peace with who we are, we are taught to place ourselves far above all other considerations, because we may end up lacking something that others will get first. Today, the idea of being so self-actualized that you are free to be selfless with others, is a foreign concept. Even amongst the Brethren of the Lord, Jesus. We are never to act in a way that supports our sense of self above others. We are to be so well identified and comfortable in our own skin that interacting with others becomes a positive thing for that person. We have gotten this one very backward. Warped EGO tells us we need to take from others so we will win and be better. Godly EGO is not like that at all. Jesus said we are to love others AS MUCH as we love ourselves. A weak and selfish EGO will keep you from reaching out to others. A healthy and strong sense of self is a healthy EGO.
A good, strong, lasting love is built of all these things.
These lessons are lessons I have had to learn by getting it wrong repeatedly. I destroyed my first marriage because I didn’t understand this at all. I have been intimate with far too many women without even taking in consideration these things. Today, I have a relationship with Sandy that goes beyond anything I ever thought could be possible. What makes it so special is that, now I am a believer in Jesus Christ. That has changed me so dramatically that all the above has become true in our relationship.
What sandy and I have is, indeed, very SPECIAL.
Let’s be about it!
I Love you,
David G. Perkins