My (Preferred) Alter-Ego (come find me here!)

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

my companion, my heart

A few weeks ago, Pastor said something in his sermon that has really stayed with me. He was talking about the marriage of Jacob to both Leah and Rachel in the Old Testament, and how Jacob loved Rachel more, even after seven years of marriage to Leah, because Rachel was his heart. Pastor then admonished all singles in the church to make sure that their future spouse was their heart and not just their companion.

My heart went out to the poignancy of Leah's plight, bound for the rest of her life to a man who would always love her sister more, the apparent quintessential Proverbs 30:23 woman; and then I began to think about Leah herself. Unfortunately, instead of focusing on capturing her husband's heart, Leah turned her attention to the heated rivalry with her sister and fractured their relationship.

While we know that Rachel was Jacob's heart, we have to wonder if Jacob was really Leah's heart, or if she was more interested in social status and attention. While we cannot know Leah's motives and desires, we can learn from her marriage to Jacob. How often do we allow the same thing to happen in our relationship with God? We seek the benefits of companionship with Him, often without making Him our ultimate desire. Often, when we see our brothers or sisters walking in enraptured love of Him, we grow jealous of the anointing, attack their zeal and judge their motives rather than emulate their lifestyles.

At our House of Prayer meeting on Saturday, we discussed how part of the curse on woman in Genesis 3:16 was a raging thirst for love that no broken and imperfect man can fully satisfy. Leah's story is an example of how this quest can become twisted and is fruitless. I believe that the curse can be a mixed blessing. History shows us that God allows those He considers His friends to experience His emotions. Abraham better identified with God's sorrow at sacrificing His son when he laid Isaac on the altar. Hosea experienced God's pain at a constantly unfaithful people when he married a prostitute. David felt God's heartbreak at having evil repaid for good when he spared Saul's life, only to have Saul chase him in the desert again and again.

In women, God has planted an inherent ability to understand the unspeakable longing He has to be loved. He is the master pursuer, but He longs for a people who will pursue Him with equal passion and abandon. The paradox of mature, agape love is that it expands, and the more you love, the more you realize how much more there is to love. The Psalmist asked, "what is man that Your are mindful of him?" I would ask, "What am I, that Your heart's cry is to be my heart?"

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