“I am waiting like the desert for Your rain; I am bracing like the shoreline…
“Our couch is green; the beams of our house are cedar, our rafters are pine.” Song of Songs 1:17
What a curious Scripture to come to my heart as I gazed upon the crucifix above the tabernacle after daily Mass. As I pondered this and asked Jesus to help me understand why He was bringing this to my heart, He was quick to respond and affirm His love for me. His desire is to make me feel secure in His love, and to acknowledge that He is with me always. I am comforted in this affirmation from my Bridegroom, but I am still curious as to why this passage and what is He saying to me.
After a little more prayer and some breakdown of this line from the Song, I begin to understand more deeply what Jesus is speaking into my heart. I first notice the repetition of the word “our.” In this short phrase, “our” is used three times. Of course, the Blessed Trinity always comes to mind whenever there is three, but I also notice that there are three subjects – couch, house and rafters. In each of these, Jesus is wanting me to know that we are together. He and I make up “our” and that our union is one of life, stability and beauty. Our couch, to me, represents our ease with one another. When I envision a couch, I envision a family room where we all gather and there is laughter and unity and love as we all lounge on the couch. The fact that our couch is green also tells me that our union is alive, as I know that green is the color of growth, life and the ordinariness of the liturgy (not that the liturgy is ever ordinary!) This gives me security and hope and a knowledge that I am truly loved by my Bridegroom.
“The beams of our house are cedar” gave me pause until I prayed into the word “cedar.” I thought immediately of my mom’s cedar closet when I was growing up. In this closet, she kept all the clothes that she wanted to be sure did not get eaten by moths. Cedar, to me, keeps away the things that eat what we value and I was reminded of this Scripture passage:
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Mt 6: 19-21
Jesus desires that I keep our house, my garden heart, protected from the things which can consume it in this world. I must keep it from the thieves which break in and steal from my heart and I am to guard my garden heart for Him because He is my treasure and I am His.
“Our rafters are pine” also speaks to my heart of life and the hope of eternity. The pine tree is an evergreen tree that never loses its green. Even in the depths of winter or the coldest of temperatures when everything else seems to be dormant or dead, the pine remains green. This is how Jesus desires my heart to remain… ever green, ever protected and in the knowledge that I am ever loved by Him.
Living in the School of the Bridegroom is a beautiful place to reside. With an open heart and an ear to His voice, I am constantly in awe of His great love for me and for all His Brides. It is in the silence that I find my heart most drawn to Him and it is in the pondering of my heart that I see Him clearly, hear Him fully and am able to love Him more deeply. Thank You, Jesus, my Beloved Bridegroom.
Copyright 2023 – Nicky Verna