“Promise me, O women of Jerusalem, by the gazelles and wild deer,
not to awaken love until the time is right.” – Song of Solomon 3:5
Such a poetic and wise verse! When it comes to relationship advice, this is my favorite scripture. Why? Because it is the wisest advice that I believe the Bible has to offer single women. As you know, I write about chastity from a contemporary point of view. I teach that every women ought to create space in her life for an exclusively intimate relationship with God – with no man (or men) and no sex. Chastity is especially important for women who find themselves in the sexual, yet spiritual “conundrum”. But what happens when you’ve been celibate for a long time and you finally meet someone you’re interested in? What happens when you’ve been out of the dating game for sometime and a prospective gentleman catches your eye?
As a disclaimer, I should let you know that while I love men, I loathe dating (especially the first few weeks). And from firsthand experience, attempting to date after a long stint in my comfy space called chastity is always a shocking experience. I attribute my shock to the fact that while in chastity I learn how to be patient with God, but never quite master being patient with with others, including myself. In turn, dating usually goes something like this. I’m chilling in chastity, and then along comes this fine man who is interested in me. To my surprise he seems to have all the attributes I initially look for in a man (the nine Fruit of the Spirit that I outline in Chapter 10 of my book, A Space Called Chastity). Immediately, my mind begins to daydream. And if you’re imaginative like me, the daydream can look forward at least 10 years in the future. Not before long (a few days or so), I begin to sense my old addictions come up. Yes, I said it….addictions — to attention, affection and affirmation. And while the man may be doing everything right, nothing seems enough. I start wanting him to call more. I began to want to confirm future dates ahead of time to have something to look forward to in my week. I start manipulating conversation to find out if he’s a baller with investments (for future that we will have together in our brownstone, summer home and two kids….lol). And then just before I go overboard with calling him in the middle of the night and asking him to come over, something stops me. The Holy Spirit stops me and reminds me of the infinite wisdom that King Solomon asked for and in turn shares with us single women in his Songs… “do not awaken love until the time is right.”
If I choose to listen to the whisper of wisdom, I know that God will keep me in perfect peace. God will continue to guide me on the path that He has set in motion that guides me to true love with a man. But if I choose to ignore Solomon’s advice (God’s wisdom), I am doomed for another failed attempt at a relationship, heartbreak or time wasted. Most likely, I will suffer embarrassment, shame and guilt. I’ve learned from the past that when I patiently await love to wake on its own time, I find out interesting things about myself. Oftentimes I’ve learn I don’t even like the guy because he’s boring or corny. At other times I’ve learned that a guy is just wooing me to get in my pants. At best, I’ve realized that certain guys are only supposed to be great friends. What I’ve come to realize is that dating really teaches us that most guys we meet are the not the men God created to love us. So why do we attempt to rush and wake love before its time? Consider this: What happens when you are awoken and not ready to get up? You become tired, unpleasant, and usually just fall back asleep. The same can be said for a relationship when you attempt to awaken love before the time is right.
Love can awaken you, but you can’t awaken love.
**Ivy is a realist…not an expert, not a follower nor a self-appointed leader. Ivy writes with honesty. Ivy writes to make your think. Ivy does not write to give you answers, only suggestions. Ivy attempts to expose the deep down concerns women wrestle with in private. Ivy writes to let women know that we all share similar experiences, emotions and behavior. Ivy writes because sex and spirituality should not be taboo subjects. Ivy writes to foster solidarity amongst women.