To the lover of her soul,
She betrayed you.
She was cruel to you.
She forgot you.
She spat on your outstretched hand, and walked away from you.
She was like Israel and was unfaithful to you. She sought refuge in the hands of other lovers. She lost sight of you. She spiraled until you were barely an echo in her mind.
But you, you are a jealous lover. You stormed in, and you stopped her in her tracks. You took back the things you had given her, you uncovered her, and laid waste to her.
And so there she sat, trembling. Barren, afraid, alone. Embarrassed, ashamed, vulnerable.
But you scooped her up into your arms and whispered words of grace. Of kindness. You took her to the wilderness and spoke quietly to her. You clothed her once more, you wiped the dirt from her body, you bandaged her wounds. You spoke to her alluringly, tenderly.
It was just the two of you, and you took your time. You spoke to her steadily until she remembered the sound of your voice. Slowly, slowly recognition of you crept its way back from the soles of her bare feet to the center of her eyes until all they reflected was the sight of you.
You were gentle as you wiped the tears from her eyes. You were quiet as she sobbed in remorse for the things she’d done. You clutched her to yourself when she battered herself for the shame she had felt.
You pulled her back from the pit she had crashed into. Patiently, you picked out the splinters broken dreams and hopes. And as you lovingly tended to her, she could not help but notice the scars on your hands.
The ones that you had borne for her life.
And she remembered. She remembered you.
She remembered her first love, the love of her life. She remembered the sacrifices you had made for her. She remembered the way you had given up your life so that she could live.
And so she fell in love once more. She had searched high and low for someone that would relentlessly pursue her, for someone that would complete her, for someone that would passionately understand and accept her… and she did find it… in you.
And so you did as you always do. You pursued her, you did all that you could to win her back, even if that meant letting her shatter into pieces so that you could sweep her up and put her back together again. You wiped her other lovers from her lips, you brushed shame from her eyes, you scrubbed guilt from her hands.
You took her back into her garden that you had made for her. You showed her that it was still all hers, and that it always would be. You showed her the ways you had preserved it while she was gone. You showed her that she had more land to build upon.
You supported her as she took her first shaky steps back home, like the prodigal daughter she was. You carried her the times she could not stand. All the while you whispered words of life into her spirit.
You whispered until the words sank into her pores and into her being. Until they became as real as the hair on her skin. Until she could no longer deny the truths that you pressed into her.
She can walk now. Slowly, but steadily. With your hand clutched in hers, she presses forward, tending to a neglected garden. You watch her as she begins to walk forward faster, in order to pick the fallen flowers from the grass. You smile as she breaks into a run when she sees her favorite landscapes for the first time in a very long time. You celebrate when she picks up her tools in order to mend broken fixtures. You nod silently as she shows you the blueprints of dreams that she has. You lean over her to comment on her plans, and she doesn’t push you away when you make changes to them.
And finally, finally, you promise to her all that she has ever longed for, all that she has ever wanted to hear. She puts her hand to her heart at the realization that you had already been offering her all that she had ever wanted.
I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love, and in mercy. I will betroth you to me in faithfulness. And you shall know me.
She tosses herself into your embrace, feeling more love in a moment than she had in a year. Tears of joy stream down her face as peace echoes between every beat of her heart.
She is home. She is alive. She is free.
-Soli Deo Gloria