All too often, we seem to have it all together but in reality we are falling apart. Today I want to share about a woman in the Bible who was just like that.
The Shulamite is the leading lady in the story of the Song of Solomon. She was probably the luckiest woman alive at the time being married to the most successful gentleman around. Not only was Solomon an exceptional king, he was also deeply in love with his wife.
Most of us girls swoon at the idea of having a hopeless romantic for a husband. Well Solomon took the biscuit! He seemed to be smitten with every square inch of her beautiful body. Yes, my husband tells me I look lovely from time to time but he has never compared my teeth to sheep running down a mountain. That’s almost a ridiculous level of affection!
The Shulamite had every reason to feel safe and secure in knowledge that her husband loved her. However, the reality is far from that. Let’s look at a story that gives us a glimpse into the inner life of this lady.
Tell tale signs
In chapter 3 of Song of Solomon, we read about a night when the Shulamite went to bed before her husband was back from work. After waiting for a while, the she started to get worried and got up in the middle of the night to search the streets for the king. She bumped into the guards who hadn’t seen him. When she eventually located the love of her life, she said: “I held him and would not let him go…” Song of Songs 3:4
Remember, Solomon was the king of all Israel so we can safely assume he had rather a lot on his plate. However, at a time when women would not normally be seen alone outside, the Shulamite got out of bed in the night and searched the city for her husband.
This is not the behaviour of a secure person. Then when she found him, she would not let him go. The Shulamite was clingy too. She had it all on the outside but she was a mess on the inside.
Right from the start of this book, we discover the reason why the Shulamite had issues. In Song of Songs 1:6, she introduced herself like this:
“Do not look upon me because I am dark because the sun has burnt me. My mother’s sons were angry with me. They made me keeper of their vineyards but my own vineyard I have not kept.”
As a young woman, she was forced by her brothers to work outside in soaring temperatures. Her skin was burnt and her soul was clearly scarred too. We don’t know why her brothers were full of anger or hatred but we do know that these childhood experiences marked the Shulamite’s heart as well as her face.
We can have everything this life has to offer – love, family and success – but if our hearts have been wounded by hurtful experiences, it will spill out into the rest of our lives. And it is always those who are closest to us that will see close up the damage that childhood disappointments have done.
Through the chapters of the Song of Solomon, we see this young woman heal and blossom in the unconditional love of the king. Chapter 2, verse 14 shows how the king helped his bride heal:
“O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice; For your voice is sweet, And your face is lovely.”
He encouraged her to open up and to talk. He asked her to show him her face, that which signified the pain of the past. And I believe she was restored in his healing love.
The journey to wholeness for us is very similar. If like this woman, you know you that you have wounds within, share them with the Lord. As you pour out your pain in His presence, He will start to heal your heart.
If you want to be free from the pain of the past so that you can fulfil your purpose, I encourage you to order one of my books. Lifting the Mask is based on the story of the Shulamite and will help take you on a healing journey. It is available at Amazon. Also, come to Healed for Life, our transformational event that helps get you ready for your destiny. See jonaughton.com for details.