Key Text

Song of Songs 2:1-13

I am a rose of Sharon, a lily of the valleys.

As a lily among brambles, so is my love among maidens.

As an apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among young men. With great delight I sat in his shadow, and his fruit was sweet to my taste. He brought me to the banqueting house, and his intention toward me was love. Sustain me with raisins, refresh me with apples; for I am faint with love. O that his left hand were under my head, and that his right hand embraced me! I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the wild does: do not stir up or awaken love until it is ready!

The voice of my beloved! Look, he comes, leaping upon the mountains, bounding over the hills. My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Look, there he stands behind our wall, gazing in at the windows, looking through the lattice. My beloved speaks and says to me:"Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; for now the winter is past, the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.

The fig tree puts forth its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.

cited from the NRSV

Image of the week

July 31, 2005

For the previous image (30 June 2005), click here.


Present Context

For Reflection

How often does prayer seem as a duty? We discipline ourselves to pray, endeavouring to remain focussed in prayer and serious in its endeavour. Our view of prayer is often one-dimensional, even in the midst of four-fold approaches such as ACTS (Adoration-Confession-Thanksgiving-Supplication)? Prayer is framed in a cerebral sense: we use our minds to pray. But is that the sum of prayer?

The Song of Solomon frames our relationship with God in that of two lovers, much in the same way that Hosea speaks of God "wooing Israel". How do we see prayer through this lens? How can we pray in this way?

Prayer is as multi-faceted as our relationship with God. Inasmuch as we limit prayer to particular forms, we rob ourselves of the rich diversity which a walk with God can bring.

How can we be released to pray in these ways: to laugh, dance, whistle, woo, whisper, wonder, sigh....

Lord, teach us to pray...