Wednesday, January 25, 2012

PYHO: The Bible Made Me Blush!

I was away last weekend with my church's women's group on our annual retreat. This was the second year I went and I freely admit that I didn't pay too much attention to the topic ahead of time, because I was going to go no matter what. It's a weekend filled with fun, fellowship, laughter, wine, oh, and Bible study, so the topic wasn't that important...

Until last week when we were at a dinner meeting at church. My roommate for the weekend and I were firming up plans to carpool.  Another friend turned to her husband to firm up plans for the children after school and said, "It's on the Song of Solomon" and his eyes lit up and he went, "Weeelllll, I'll see YOU Sunday night!' *wink*wink*

Suddenly I was very uncomfortable... and blushing...I stood there thinking two things:
  1. "Crap, the last time I paid any attention to the Song of Solomon was when it was read at MY wedding"  ~fun memory~ 
  2. "OMGracious!!!  Am I going to have to talk about SEX with the ladies from church???"
You see, part of the weekend's structure is Small Group time following a Whole Group lecture by the guest speaker.  The Small Groups are randomly chosen and people are asked to please switch if they end up with a good friend, so the likelihood that I would end up in Small Group with someone's grandmother, who had been married for 50 years was pretty good. ~In fact, although we did not figure it out until after the fact, last year, my Small Group leader actually WAS The Girl's new best friend's grandmother... seriously!

Consequently, I went into the weekend feeling a little apprehensive.  Most of the people I've met at church are pretty gracious and non-judgmental, but it's also pretty big and I worried about talking about sex as a single woman. Plus, sometimes it's hard to listen to people talk about bettering their own marriages.  Despite this week's steamy fiction piece, I don't like talking about sex. I blush and plug my ears and go "La, la la!"  ~really, I do.~ There are words that when used in regular conversation will literally make me crawl under the table.

As is always the way, I worried for naught.  I was exactly where I needed to be.  Our speaker, a former pastor and Old Testament Scholar who currently works as a college professor is also currently happily married...for the SECOND time.

When she stood up there and said that the Song of Solomon was a beacon for her when she was getting divorced.... a written message from God that this is how love between and man and a woman was supposed to be and this was NOT what she had... and that in all the years she was single, it was a beacon that gave her the confidence to hold out for what she knew she was supposed to have.

If I'd been standing it would have brought me to my knees.  It did bring me to tears.

Don't get me wrong... she totally talked about the sex part too and had us rolling on the floor.  One rabbi she quoted called it soft-core porn and I will say that parts of it rival any good smutty romance.  Right the Bible...who knew??? BUT that's not the bigger picture.  That's not what I walked away with.  

This week I'm feeling a little raw... a little unsteady on my feet...but not necessarily in a BAD way.

FYI: These are the verses that were read at my wedding:

Song of Solomon 8:6-7
Set me as a seal on your heart, as a seal on your arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which has a most vehement flame.

Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be condemned.

No, the irony is not lost on me.   


The Blonde Duck said...

I'm not good talking about sex either. I joined the RWA years ago and got in trouble because I couldn't write sex scenes!

Heather said...

Things do have a way of working out, huh. Happy you ad such a positive experience ven with all the sex talk!

Oh and I don't do sex talk AT ALL.

Diane said...

Yeah, most people would be surprised at some of the stuff that's in the Bible. I was the first time I read Song of Solomon.

Sounds like she did a great job leading the discussion of it.

And I hope you get to experience that kind of love. But I know you will. ;)

StardustSavannah said...

I love it that you had this experience...
While not a Christian, I totally get it.
And can vouch for the fact that it's tru, because I have it...and I didn't have it the other times- that's right- TIMES.
J.C. is my 3rd husband...the first was short lived, but worth the pain. The second was a 15 year marriage, and I was the loyal one who stayed because of dumb reasons...non of which were productive for me or the boys. I didn't want that for them, didn't want that to be the example they follwed into adult life. As scary as it was, I never felt abandoned by the goodness and love of the Universe- and I was not disappointed. It led me right to Mr. Wilson.
Sometimes we just have to forget what it is we think we should do, or what we don't have, and live in the security that the Universe, (God, Allah, Buddha) will provide.
It always does, if we simply let it. Look how much you already have- let the rest come.
Thanks so much for sharing!

Tara R. said...

Sounds like the retreat was where you needed to be to hear what you needed to hear. That you were among friends was all the more special.

Slamdunk said...

Glad you kept an open mind. I'm always impressed with the diversity of relevant messages in the old Bible book.

Shell said...

I'm so glad it worked out this way and you heard what really spoke to your heart. xo

Not a Perfect Mom said...

we had a sermon recently on the gift of sex in marriage and parts of that verse were read...
it is soft porn, huh?
so glad to hear it hit you...hold out for the best deserve it
although I didn't take you for a prude..ha!

Carly said...

I love how God uses messages to reach us at just the right time!

Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman) said...

I'm at the point that I don't even like reading about sex. This weekend I read a novel, and suddenly there were sex scenes. Even though it was about many women, only one woman's sex life was written about. I didn't think it was necessary.

Glad you went despite the subject. God wanted you there.

Unknown Mami said...

I'm glad you found yourself right where you needed to be.

Mimi B said...

Sounds like where I needed to be, actually! Wish I could've heard what was shared. I started reading this at church and had to close it on my phone I was laughing out loud. =) So glad it ended well for you. Oh, and I filed for divorce today! =)

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