Laura Hope resides in Israel where she manages a Bible bookstore with her husband. She enjoys the arts, archeology, music, herbalism and other natural medicines. Most of all she enjoys exploring the love song of God written to us in the Scriptures.
The Future Glory of Zion “Sing, barren woman,
you who never bore a child;
burst into song, shout for joy,
you who were never in labor;
because more are the children of the desolate woman
than of her who has a husband,”
says the Lord.
2 “Enlarge the place of your tent,
stretch your tent curtains wide,
do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
strengthen your stakes.
3 For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
your descendants will dispossess nations
and settle in their desolate cities.
We just moved. We moved from a smaller apartment to a bigger one. When we got to the bigger apartment I thought we were going to have to buy new curtains, but no. Somehow miraculously the curtains that fit on one window stretched to fit on two windows. God retched us from our small apartment to our newer more full one and even the curtains stretched with us!
Would you like to go large?
God wants to take the little oil we have a stretch it. Stretch those curtains! Stretch your faith!
Do not hold back! Do not hold back!
Don’t allow fear to hold you back. Step out, Keep challenging yourself and let go of our low expectations. Our God is a God who makes all things possible. He can make the barren fruitful.
Do Not shrink back!
Let your light shine. What has God been calling you to do and you have shrunk back?
Lengthen your cords. Get to know those around you. Reach out to those outside the tent.
How are you going to go deeper? We can not stick to the shallow end forever, we need to get into deeper waters. God wants to take us further. He is challenges us to give him all of our hearts, He is our husband, a jealous husband, that wants us to dive deep into His love. Let us drive the stakes of our tent deep into Him.
What is challenging for you? Is it prayer or reading the word. I challenge you to dig deeper!
“Do not be afraid; you will not be put to shame.
Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated.
You will forget the shame of your youth
and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood.
5 For your Maker is your husband— the Lord Almighty is his name— the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.
6 The Lord will call you back
as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit—
a wife who married young,
only to be rejected,” says your God.
7 “For a brief moment I abandoned you,
but with deep compassion I will bring you back.
8 In a surge of anger
I hid my face from you for a moment,
but with everlasting kindness
I will have compassion on you,”
says the Lord your Redeemer.
9 “To me this is like the days of Noah,
when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth.
So now I have sworn not to be angry with you,
never to rebuke you again.
10 Though the mountains be shaken
and the hills be removed,
yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
says the Lord, who has compassion on you.
This passage was a promised to Israel, and to the barren woman, and to those who follow our Messiah. Man and woman we are symbolically the Bride of Messiah.
It carries multiple layers that touches the hearts of people from generation to generation. This passage was fulfilled in part already and its primary fulfillment will be during the millennium reign of Messiah.
To those who are bound by shame. We see in Isaiah 53 the Suffering Servant has come to rescue us. He has taken our guilt, our shame, and even our false shame.
He wants to lift the chains off our feet and hands so that we can dance.
He wants to take his bride out of the paralysis of shame and fear.
He tells us not to be afraid for, 5 “For your Maker is your husband”.
He is covering me. He is protecting me. Whom shall I fear?
Shame knows no boundaries. This passage is not just for the barren, the widow, or even the wife who is divorced or separated. This passage can reach into the hearts of every man and woman who has known shame. This is a promise to those crushed by shame.
The shame of your past is not your future.
Is there a future for the people of God? We need to look up.
We need to start singing a song of joy!
We need to let go of fear and dig deep. God wants all of our hearts. He wants us to return to Him in a spirit of repentance as he begins to pour out upon us his grace and mercy. (chesed and rachamim) Your maker is your husband. He wants your marriage to him to flourish, for He as the scripture says, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
Lift up your heads. You are no longer forsaken. You are His Beloved. Let us return to our Beloved, so that he can take our barrenness and make us a fruitful garden and cause our tent to grow and our light to shine for all the world to see.
Psalms 19:8 The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes.
October 15, 2006
This year I have been in a physical process of healing after eye surgery. The doctors promised immediate results but forgot to mention the pain of the healing process. I had the surgery done during a semester break before my last semester at seminary. It was not the wisest time to have the surgery done, after I realized the pain was not going to go away and the healing was not going to take place overnight, I almost decided to quit my studies before the semester actually started. But since it was my last semester, I decided to give it my all and go for it.
The next few months I pushed myself to the limits. I decided that I would go on a Holocaust tour of Poland because the paperwork would be less. But this trip was taken at one of my weakest points ever, after a semester of stretching my swollen eyes on the pile of papers, I embarked on a journey that would lead me to the dark valleys of the shadow of death that the Children of Israel had to travel- to the death camps and the gas chambers. I came face to face with fear itself and when I walked in places like Auschwitz the tears began to flow. But I heard the melody of a song that I had once heard that came from a revival,
“Try as I may to chase another lover, I find, I find there is no other.” “Will you trust me? Will you trust me?”
When I came back from the journey- I realized that a season in my life was over. My studies were finished and certain dreams and ideas that I had concerning the next step were closed.
I hid my eyes. I think that I had been doing it for a while, but this time I was hiding my eyes from my King. Somehow in the chaos, I had forgotten the powerful personal revelation of his amazing love for me. My first love had faded, my heart had been imprisoned in the desert of doubt. My eyes were not lifted up. I could not feel His face “shining upon me” with His peace.
Psalms 38: 10 My heart pounds, my strength fails me; even the light has gone from my eyes. Psalms 13: 3 Look on me and answer, O LORD my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death;
What is it about her eyes that compels Him to be so enraptured? It is none other than the love-light which He sees.
While reading from one of Gwen Shaw’s commentaries, I was touched by the following quote:
“A certain woman told me about someone she had loved in her girlhood. Although they had been very attached to each other, through circumstances that came into their lives they had never married. I asked her if she had ever seen him whom she had loved, in later years. “Yes”, she said, “I saw him, but he never saw me. I stayed in my room upstairs when he happened to call at a house where I was staying during my holidays.” I asked her why she had not gone downstairs and spoken to him. She answered me, “Because I would never have wanted him to have the chance to look into my eyes.”
I have never forgotten those significant words. What does the Lord see when He looks into your eyes, which as we said before, are the windows of the soul? Is He satisfied that you love Him more than all else? Have you set your affection on things above? Do you seek first the kingdom of God?”
Do we have the “first love” for our Lord that consumes us so that we want His will and kingdom done more than our own?
Does our love sickness for Him cause us to search for him even in the late watches of the night?
Psalms 119: 148 My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on your promises.
Do we want to be in His presence more than anyone else?
Are we ever too ashamed or proud to speak of Him to others?
Song of Songs 1:
15 Behold, you are fair, my love! Behold, you are fair! You have dove’s eyes.
We are to have eyes of the Spirit that discern good from evil. Pure eyes that are captivated on following after the Lover of the soul along the narrow path.
15 The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry;
If we have the righteous eyes of a dove, the Lord will be captivated by us. His ears will be eager to hear His Beloved’s cry.
Let us not hide our eyes from our Beloved King. He already knows our deepest fears. Let the power of His love lift your eyes out of under your blanket of despair, for His love is truly there.
He is closer than we think. He is just waiting for us to lift our eyes to Him and hear us confess that we do need Him. As we turn to Him, He will captivate us and we will become more and more dedicated in the pursuit of His kingdom and His righteousness.
I hid my eyes from your face, Doubt spun It’s wicked deceit, And I could not feel The ray of fire Of Your love and grace.But You gave me hope to see,Your love was there waiting for me.I lifted my soulAnd let You take control.You saw inside the Windows of my heart, As I looked to You,I was captivated to follow Your Love forevermore.
One of the dearest psalms to my heart is Psalm 42. It is wrapped up in memories of my teen years living in the Upper Galilee. The Psalmist begins the Psalm saying how thirsty he is for the living God. Tears have been his food night and day. His faith is being attacked by outside forces saying, “Where is your God?” But then he goes on to say I will “remember these things” and he pours out his soul. What are some of the treasured moments in your life that shows God’s faithfulness to you? We should remember these things.
I remember my first time singing as a girl, singing “Oh Lord you have been Good” by Twila Paris. Someone saw something in me and chose me to sing and that ignited a fire in me of worship. The “God who sees” has seen you! Can you remember when He saw you and looked at you with favor? God has been good, He has been faithful to all generations.We find our strength by remembering His faithfulness.
I remember how I would go up to Jerusalem and join in the pilgrim feasts. How wonderful it was to to dance to God without fear with people from every tribe and language! Even in my youth, He was faithfully chasing me and romancing me. I lived in a border town under the heights of Hermon. He drew me away into the hills and fields. He filled my soul with the sound of music. Even in my loneliness, He was so close to me. He filled my heart with freedom from fear. Even under rocket fire, I would still go on my prayer walks with Him. The deep longing within me called unto the deepness of God. All of His waves and breakers would sweep over me. My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember youfrom the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.7 Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls;all your waves and breakers have swept over me. Psalms 42:6-7 God did not keep me on the mountain tops of His majestic glory forever. He sent me out into the cities where as a foreigner and follower of Messiah I would not always be accepted. I remember when I was living in Nazareth at age 20. I was having identity issues and struggling with finding something to fill the deep within my heart. As a country girl thrown into a big city, I found it hard to go out on my prayer walks. I went from church meeting to church meeting but would still coming home empty. One night Jesus appeared to me in a dream. In the dream, I was grabbing the communion bread and juice and feeding myself. Jesus looked at me with such sadness and said to me, “No, Laura, I will serve you. Wait on me, and let me serve you”. Then He gave me the bread and the wine. I was so touched that in the midst of my loneliness and despair, Jesus was faithful and true! He gave me a reminder to wait on Him and commune with Him. He would serve me and fill my aching deep that calls to deep. God was faithful to me when I laid everything on the altar concerning the man I was going to marry. When I was almost turning 30, I was directing my Bible bookstore in Jerusalem. I really felt the need and desire to get married. I finally went to a monastery for a retreat for three days of fasting and prayer. I gave up all my preconceived dreams and ideas concerning the man I would marry. When I had laid it on the altar and poured out the deep that calls to deep, God gave me freedom and even whispered in my spirit hope that soon I was to meet my husband.
Shortly afterward, my mother saw a man at a choir concert of Handel’s Messiah in Hebrew where I was singing. She asked God, “If this is the man for Laura, help them to meet.” Later, I saw him on a bus and we traveled to the same event in the Galilee. I asked God for permission to fall in love with him and I felt He gave me a sign. Our engagement was far from ordinarybut God knew what both of us needed at that time. God was faithful in our time of need. The birth of my two sons was dramatic. My first was over three weeks overdue and an emergency c section. The baby and I had to be hospitalized for 2 weeks following the birth. It was hard to accept the shock of this birth when I had imagined having a water birth with Handel’s Messiah playing in the background. I was such a dreamer! But within 5 months I was pregnant again! This time God gave me a dream where I saw my baby’s face. The doctors had told me it was unsafe to get pregnant so soon following a cesarean. I felt the birth would be difficult. God gave us a name for our son Isaiah Benjamin which means “God saves and son of my right hand.” I had yet another traumatic birth with an emergency cesarean. This time I almost died. I was given over 10 units of blood. The doctors were going to take out my womb. I begin praying in the spirit that they would not and they didn’t. I was in the emergency room for 5 days and contracted klebsiella, a superbug. I left the hospital a few days later while I still had the superbug. (Our insurance company did not cover the birth and we could not afford to stay indefinitely.) After I finished the antibiotics, I still had it. Before I went into the hospital to give birth, I spontaneously bought the book Natural Alternatives for Treating Drug-resistant Bacteria. After we got home from the hospital I ordered the tinctures as my husband and I prayed against the spirit of death. The tinctures arrived from NY to Israel and I began taking it and the superbug went away! I felt that God had guided me to find that book at just the right time. He was so faithful in his promises. In the Bible, Benjamin’s mother, Rachel, died in childbirth. But with the name Isaiah, God is my Savior, God saved me from that fate!
God knew even before my son was born that I would go through the valley of the shadow of death and he taught me to fear no evil! My son’s name was a prophetic promise to me that God would save me from death and give me the son of my right hand.
God is faithful even when we are faithless. Serving the Lord in a small obscure Bible Bookshop in Jerusalem can sometimes be overwhelming. I remember recently I was thinking, “It’s time to quit.” I felt that because of my health problems, God could not use me anymore. How can God use someone who is broken and stressed? I felt condemnation. The anxieties of life were choking my faith. I told my husband, “God is not going to provide for us this month. We barely made it last month and this month we have thousands of shekels of bills for insurance for the car and bills.” But my husband had faith and said God would provide. Now, I was raised in a family in the ministry, but yet again I was surprised with God’s faithfulness. One person sent us a check that nearly covered all of the bills! I cried with thankfulness for God’s faithfulness. God had not forsaken us. He still had a plan for us, a plan of hope for our future. John the Baptist was one of the most amazing prophets and he still had his moments of doubt in the prison. 2 Timothy 2:13 If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself. (2 Timothy 2:13) God is faithful and will continue to remain faithful. We can trust Him with our future. We do not have to fear what the unknown holds. The same God who calmed the seas, can calm our minds. The same God who spoke to waves, can breath into us life. We have a resurrecting power that enables us to get up, when we fall. We have a God who moves mountains, who is mighty to save! We have a God we can help us stand when all around people are bowing down to the idols of this age. It is only by His Spirit can we live, move, and have our being. If we lean upon Him, we can come up out of the wilderness leaning on our Beloved. Choose to remember our Beloved’s faithfulness to you! The God who Sees you, has not forgotten you! The God who was with you in the mountain tops of your faith, is still with you in the valleys of despair. God is faithful and He will help you even when you are faithless. But where is your faith? Remember that the one who speaks to the wind and waves, has given you power and authority to trample on every snake and scorpion! Wait on Him. Let Him serve you the Bread and the Wine. He will lead you in green pastures, as you dine in the presence of your enemies. He will be faithful in your time of need. If you open your heart He will faithfully whisper the words of hope, that will get you through the trials you face. Your journey has been great, but He has been with you. He has never forsaken you, even when you walk through the valley of death, if you hold His hand you will fear no evil.
The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. Matthew 7:25 Hard pressed
The inner and outer storm
Causes me to run to the One
Who lifts me up in His arms
And carries me on with a hope so strong
I may not hold the answers to life’s mysteries
But I hold the hand of the nail scared King of Kings.
I feel God has been healing my heart this year and birthing new dreams and desires. I need a new wineskin. So I am trying to spend time in meditation on His word. I want to see my boys walking in the anointing of the Lord. I thank God that they asked him in their hearts and I see God working in their life but I want more. I want to raise world changers. I see how the enemy wants to steal, kill, and destroy but I am not going to let him. I am going to get on my knees and pray for revival. Revival in my life, in my family, and in this nation. God can use a donkey, and he can use me. God can use anyone who humbles themselves. God resist the proud but gives grace to the humble.
1 Peter 5:5-6
5 Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for“God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, So I am humbling myself and exposing my weakness. I need prayer. We need a breakthrough. Only God can move mountains. Only with God’s help can we slay the giants and take the land. But we need each other. I am tired of building myself a fortress and pretending everything is alright. I want to find the alter, where the sparrow has found a home, and really feel the power of the cross break every chain. Oh Jerusalem, city who killed the prophets, this is where we are today. If only we would open our eyes and see how our Father above wants to wrap us in His arms like angels wings. Are we willing? Are we willing? Sparrows
April 8, 2006
Saturday, April 08, 2006 Reflecting on my journal post from 2006
New Wine skins
Pursue me with your love.
Draw me and I will run after you.
I am longing to see the light in your eyes,
That lets me know I find favor in your sight.
Captivated by heaven sent love ~
Let no misunderstanding
Take me away from your presence.
But if this new wine of love is to come,
I must purify my heart from the worldly dark.
So to my Lord I come, setting myself apart,
Cleanse me and fill me with your new wine,
So I can find freedom in the movement
Of going from glory to glory,
And experience the LOVE that you choose.
This little sparrow has fallen down to the ground This little sparrow has fallen down in the meadow Take me home to your alter Take me home with you Wherever you are, I’m at home Wherever you are, I’m free when I’m with you. You teach me to fly when my wings have been broken, You teach me to run, when I’ve buried my feet. You teach me to sing, when I’ve forgotten our love song. You teach me to love, and you open heaven’s door. You are in control Even in the darkest night You are in control Everything going to be alright Even if my heart is shaking By the unknown I look to you and I know Before the past, before the present, before the future, You were there and you were in control. I look to you, and you take away my blues I know it’s all about to become undone Because you are transforming me You are taking me on a voyage It’s not about yesterday Or tomorrow It’s all about right now and forever I have got a mystery in this moment You are with me now and forever And Your love for me will never end. It only took a second to feel you with me, But I had to run away from distractions. Just call me, and I’ll come running Just whisper my name and I feel the earth shake. You are with me now and forever And you promised you would never leave. Every challenge that I face, brings me back to the test of faith. And I’m running to you, Because that’s all I can do. I don’t know how to live without loving you. I don’t know how to live without you. I’m running to you, Because that’s all I can do. Take me to the meadow Take me by the streams My everything is found in you My Beloved. After the fall, after the war, after the breakup, after the makeup, After the winter, and the spring, comes a day more beautiful than birth… It’s the Light in the Sky, It’s the light of the Rider on the White Horse, It’s the Light in the Sky, It’s my Love coming for me, It’s the Light in the sky bringing me into forever, It’s the Light of the World, My King of Eternity. After all the tears are wiped away, I’ll enter heaven’s mansion, So today I rest and put away my burdens, My hope is secured in faith, hope, and love. I’ve got a Love watching over me from above. For now each day, now until forever, I’ll find my strength in the cry of the Spirit and the Bride Come, Lord, Come, Lord, Come, Come my Beloved, my eyes are looking to the skies…
Today in the congregation we looked at one of the Psalms. It was one that actually that did have a happy ending. It encouraged me to know that God cares for how I feel today. I do not have to have all the answers. I can still question. I can still voice my petitions and tell Him how I feel and He still cares enough to listen. He cares for the littlest sparrow and He cares for you, even in your darkest night of the soul. Lay all of your burdens down. Because God wants to lift your head today. Get a paper and a pen and tell Him how you feel. He is not as far away as you think. He is listening, listening to the beating of your heart. He wants to bind together your broken wings and watch over you until you can fly again. Birds’ bones are very fragile, making broken wings a common injury.
My crown has fallen off my head
My eyes are bloodshot I feel dead.
There is agony in this pain.
I do not know what’s left in my name.
My soul stings,
It’s upside down in here.
My dreams collide with reality
and I know things are not how they should be.
This fallen world,
I am still here.
But my thoughts take me higher today.
To One who washes away my tears.
In the dark night of the soul,
To the One Who calls me dark
Lifting up my eyes to you
As a nameless, placeless flower.
Lost in a sea of thistles.
My heart tells me to dig deeper wells,
For I know true healing comes
When I collide
My thoughts are full.
Only you can transpose the key to this song.
Only you can take this melody and set it free.
I have hope for what I do not see,
I have hope for what I do not yet feel,
Because I remember
Yours is the voice that heals.
So take these tears stuck in my heart,
Take them and make it rain.
So I might know your mercies new,
So that I might know how great and how wide is your love.
Psalm 56:8 You’ve kept track of all my wandering and my weeping. You’ve stored my many tears in your bottle—not one will be lost. For they are all recorded in your book of remembrance.
It had been a hectic day for the seventeen-year-old girl. She had completed a two-hour run, packed her bags to return from her time in the USA back to her family in Israel. She had relatives to visit and say her goodbyes, she was running on adrenaline. Soon after one year of being away from her family, she would be home- in Israel. Her parents and decided to send her to live with her grandma in the USA, after she had difficulty adjusting to the Israeli kibutz Dafna High School. It had been hard for her at first, but she had determined to let God change her. She had really blossomed that year, she came out of her shy shell and like a butterfly managed to make friends with just about everyone in the school. She had come back to the States a little bitter about life in Israel, but now she was beginning to get excited about her return trip. Somehow God had planted a deep love in her heart for Israel and she knew that was where she needed to be. But her mother had called her a few days earlier telling her all about a strange Aliwhite village on the Northern border of Israel that was amazingly open to the gospel. She listened to her mother in a little bit of skepticism and disinterest. She knew her mother, always embarrassing her talking to everyone about anything. She didn’t think she was ready to go meet these strangers with a message that they might want to hear. Evangelism just wasn’t her gift, she thought.
With her new driver’s license in her purse and a million thoughts in her head, she drove down the dirty gravel road. All at once she was spinning out of control and a tree was before her eyes. The collision was huge. The tree didn’t move but the car was destroyed. Her leg was broken and she could see the bone divided in her thigh. She had hit her head and she was in pain everywhere. She was stricken with fear like she never had before, she had never been afraid to die. She thought she could face any dare and yet here she was alone in the forest. She screamed with all her being, “JESUS, SAVE ME! JESUS SAVE ME!” Within a few minutes a woman drove up and called for an ambulance, help was on its way. The woman freaked out though when she saw the teenager’s head. Blood was gushing and would not stop. The girl kept telling the woman, “I am OK, I am OK,” but the woman said, “you are not OK, look at your head” and proceeded to give her a mirror. The girl went into shock after seeing the blood. Fear flooded over her soul, was she ready to die?
The ambulance finally came but there seemed to be complications. There were several tornadoes in the region and it was not safe to airlift her to the hospital. So for over 11 hours, she laid in the basement of the local clinic waiting to be moved to a different hospital for surgery. The thirst was unbelievable since she was not allowed to drink anything. When she finally had the surgery there were complications. It seemed that bone marrow and gotten into her bloodstream and was making it difficult to breathe. If things did not clear up she could die, others had from this. For several days she was having difficulty breathing. She felt such an intense war against her life. She started seeing things in the spirit. Demons were trying to kill her, she was sure.
On the other side of the globe in Israel, her mother had been awakened from sleep hearing a terrible crash. She looked out of the window but did not see anything. It was the very same time as her accident in the USA. Her family dropped everything and flew to see her. A week after the accident things started to look up. A couple came from Saint Louis and prayed and prophesied for her. They said she would get better and that God had amazing things for her in Israel, she had a calling on her life and nothing the devil did to steal it would work. That night as she lay alone in the hospital room the fear and the death angels left. Songs of heaven filled the room as she rested. She heard the fluttering of angels wings and celestial singing that filled her heart with such an amazing peace. God had a plan for her, Jesus was at the wheel of her life and she was never going to be the same. She decided that she didn’t want to waste her days on her own schedule and plans, she knew her days were numbered and there was precious time that she could not lose. She must overcome all her fears and let God have the wheel of her life. God wanted not just a part of her life, but complete control. She would not be her own, but she would belong to him and he would be at the wheel. She decided that she never wanted to be the one in control, it had to be God driving. His directions would lead her to some scary and unpredictable places, she would face rejection, persecution, and even pain. But it would be worth it because she would not be alone.
In occuuational theropy after the acident
She returned to Israel a changed teenager. She had made a decision, and she would not put her car into reverse, she was surrendering everything to the Lord of the Universe. Sure it was scary to lose control, but she knew it was God alone who knew the number of her days and she was not in control anyway.
The girl in the story is me, Laura. I would like to encourage you to let Jesus take the wheel in your life. So often we are afraid to let him have full control, we fight with him and tell him where we would like the car to go. But God is there watching from the Heavens, longing for us to surrender to Him before it is too late. Hopefully, it will not take a dangerous awakening like I had to realize it. If we surrender to Him completely, He will pour out his Spirit on our lives in an amazing way. What are you doing to block God’s hand in your life? What are you doing that is keeping God from moving? Surrender your fear, and give Jesus the wheel.
A Song of Songs Devotional “What is your favorite food?” I was asked at a party. I then replied, “Apples”. A bit of a strange answer, but I had been born on Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New year) when they traditionally dipped apples in honey. Also I had lived many years in a little village whose symbol was the apple from their apple orchards. Someone in the group took notice of that and soon begin to come and bring me an apple a day where I worked in my bookshop. He even brought one to me as we stood under our wedding hupah to be married.
Song of Songs 2:5 Strengthen me with raisins, refresh me with apples, for I am faint with love. Apples in this passage seem to refresh someone that is weak, with love. So they are portions given to strengthen the weary and weak, and they strengthen love. The Song of Songs has many layers. One can look at it through sexual eyes, and one can also look at through another layer– through spiritual eyes.
How is our God like an apple tree? He desires to strengthen us, refresh us, and romance us with His redeeming love until one day we join him in a heavenly wedding feast. He allows us to sit under his protecting shade and so we will be refreshed in the wonder of His love. The words of his mouth are sweeter than apples and honey.
Song of Songs 2: 3 “As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.
Today are you feeling weak? Do you need your love strengthened? There are beautiful love messages from heaven that have been sent to you. Your God delights in you and wants to fill your heart with new songs. Why don’t you open the Song of Songs and read it as if it was a love song from your God? Have you forgotten or not known the tenderness and love of God? He wants to reveal it to you afresh today. Listen to his call of love and his desire to serve you so that you might know how deep His love is for us.
There is one more tree that one day God wants us to eat from. We have this promise if we overcome that we will eat of its fruit.
Refresh me with your apples, Lord.
Let me hear your voice. l rest beneath your shelter,