Freedom. It has been our collective heart cry, intensified in these days. Lockdowns and restrictions. Or perhaps I should just call it shackles and a cage, on top of those we already live under. Remember, Paul was under lockdown when he penned some of the letters included in the New Testament. What is this blog post, if it can’t set you free? I admit, there are just some things I can’t do, even though I would like to. This post has been sitting on my desk from February. Since then, it seems the world has been turned upside down. So now, this is all for Him, …
This dress isn’t right, I thought. But how could I possibly get married in a white dress? Doesn’t white represent purity? No, this dress.
I was sitting on the floor. The bodice of my wedding dress, beautiful and white, as it’s supposed to be. But the skirt! It was red, bulked out over the petticoat, splattered in white dots. A blood-red dress. Like His blood. But I’m not worthy. I’m too afraid. And what are these white dots about? They look like someone stained the red material with bleach.
As the tears of my iniquity rolled down my face, as I thought I can’t possibly get married, He came behind me. My groom. He lay his head on mine like a bridal veil. His embrace covered me in His Love.
That is unconditional love. Just as I am. And because of it, He sacrificed himself. His blood cleanses us from all sin. (1 John 1:7)
Grace. (That is the undeserved favour of God.)
What amazing grace that he has chosen me, despite all my failings. Despite all my iniquity. Despite all my fear.
The bride represents you, me, men, women – all children of El Shaddai (God Almighty). We are the bride of Christ, those of us who choose to accept him as our Lord and Saviour. It is a choice we can make by his grace. It is a covenant we enter into by faith, as in you believe and confess that He died for your sin.
Wrapped in the safety of His arms.
Psalm 91 Verse 4 (LEB)
“With his feathers he will cover you, and under his wings you can take refuge. His faithfulness will be a shield and a buckler”
Palm 91 is a beautiful scripture, especially in times such as these. It speaks about His protection when we remain wrapped in his arms, like a bride wrapped in the arms of her groom.
And like a marriage, by His blood poured out to us, we entered into a covenant relationship with the triune God, that is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
Covenant, that is an unbreakable contract, a bond – a blood bond. Unlike any other, this covenant is the most freeing covering you will ever find.
He wants to hold you tight, but never hold you back. And if you feel you are not enough, He wants to break the distorted image you hold in your mind. Make the truth a little clearer.
When the darkness closes in, he is the light. There is no fear in perfect love. He wants us free from anxiety.
You are free to love and worship Him. Because when you worship him, you stop focusing on everything wrong and causing you pain. Instead, you direct your attention to the one who is your problem solver. Worship is the freedom to sing, dance, and gasp in awe at His majesty. And like dancing at your wedding, worship is a celebration of our covenant, the party if you will after the wedding feast.
It is Jesus who covers me. He covers me and whatever is still not enough about me.
Like a bridal veil over my head, He is also the authority (cover) over my head.
(1 Corinthians 11: 10) (NLT)
“For this reason, and because the angels are watching, a woman should wear a covering on her head to show she is under authority.”
Now, in the days that this was written, it was a custom for a woman to wear a veil during prayer and attending church service. They adopted this from the Jewish tradition. This was symbolic of humbleness and being under authority. And while this was tradition, it was not law, because Jesus set us free from the law.
The King James Translation of the bible puts it like this.
“For this, cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.”1 Corinthians 11:10 (KJV)
The very next verse says that,
Even so, from the Lord’s perspective, the woman is as essential as the man, and the man as essential as the woman.1 Corinthians 11:11 (FBV)
I’m not inferior to anyone, based on my gender, education or lack thereof or anything else that would have me believe otherwise. Why? Because Jesus is my covering and authority. He becomes a veil of power over my head.
Like a husband to a wife, my provider, my protector, my shelter
God, my refuge. There no evil will befall me, neither shall any plague come near my home. He will give His angels charge over me, to keep me in all my ways. (Psalm 91 verses 9 to 11)
Wherever I may go, wherever I may be, He walks with me. Intimately, he whispers my name. Each morning He confirms his love. While the world tells me I don’t belong, He tells me; you are mine.
In His arms, His opinion about me sounds louder than the judgments others heap on me. He carefully caresses off their rejection, like ash particles blowing away in the wind, and instead, he gifts me in gold.
G > Ʌ V
There is never a moment when he is too busy. There is never a time I can’t speak to Him. He is always bigger than whatever paralyzes me in fear.
There’s nothing in this world, no virus, nothing thinkable or unthinkable, no fear mongering conspiracy theories as factual as it may seem, no corrupt political power, no trouble, not hard times – absolutely nothing can get between me and God’s Love because of the way Jesus has embraced me. (Read Romans 8)
In short, God is greater than my highs and my lows. G > Ʌ V
In fact, I am more than a conqueror, through Him who Loves me. When we talk (that is pray) I am seated with Him above it all. My God, the creator of the sun, moon and stars. He has engraved my name on the palm of his hand. (Isaiah 49:16) Even before the creation of the earth, he held a picture of me inside his perfect plan. Who am I, that he loves me so?
Called to be the bride
I crave His Love, more and more each day. And although a hundred may fall at my one side, and a thousand at the other, I will not be afraid, for He protects me.
How can it be that the brokenness of this world screams louder than that which is good, honourable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable? How can it be that we may have many possessions, but inside we feel we are never enough? We are faced with an ever alarming Mental Health crisis. Women and child abuse, passion killings and baby dumping fill the pages of our newspapers. It’s always one social outcry which tries to scream louder than the last. Poverty rages, as the already strained economy threatens to collapse. While corrupt politicians seek to fill their already overfull pockets. How can it be?
Not only are we saved but also called to be the bride of Christ. He becomes the veil of authority and power over our head. Our ability to identify with the pain of this world is due to the fact that the spirit of God yes, the lion of Juda, lives on the inside of us. Now is the time we remember how to roar. For he has overcome and conquered!
As hard as this may be to admit, there are just some things I can not do. But he can, more exceeding abundantly above all that I ask or imagine. Despite all the things we face, we are winning the battle via Christ who so clearly proves his Love to us.
He becomes the pulse of our existence. Each moment of hope, my heartbeat.
My Jesus. Here, I am.