This morning in a response to a fellow student’s post I heard the words “lily among thorns”. They just came out of nowhere to me in a gentle whisper, so I knew they were of God. I did a quick Bible search and found out where they came from. The verse was Song of Solomon 2:2 and it says, “Like a lily among the thorns,so is my darling among the maidens.” (NASB). I shared this verse with the student and said that God wanted her to know His great love He had for her. As I wrote, a visual of a lily among thorns appeared in my head.
I figured that would be the end of it, but no, this verse has haunted me all day long and now I am absolutely obsessed over it. I have picked it apart and have ruminated over it for hours. I thought about the context of the school posting: suffering being a “window into the soul”. I was sharing with this student of how my two-year long period of suffering had brought me into a wonderful new place in my relationship with God, in which He is now “wooing” me to Himself and I am experiencing a love for Him and with Him I have never experienced before. It goes beyond the typical Savior and Lord, Father love into a deeper romantic love from God. I think sometimes we are afraid of this kind of love, but as I have been reading through “Captivating” by John and Statsi Eldredge I am beginning to realize this is the deeper kind of love God has been drawing me into.
This leads me to find two meanings in this verse. First of all, God is saying to me that the verse refers to my time of suffering. The thorns represent the dark period in my life in which He was growing me and transforming me into, well, a beautiful, delicate, but strong lily. Secondly, God is showing me my beauty, which I actually prayed for him to do just the other night. You see, lately He has been showing how much He truly does love me. Yet, despite having all this, I wanted more from Him, and I think He delights in this. It gives Him joy when His children desires more of His presence. So I prayed for God to show me my beauty; show me how I am attractive. He did this by not only giving this verse to this student, He’s also giving it to me. He is showing me my own beauty and the love He has for me.
Really, this verse is for any woman of God. I know we all struggle with beauty and self-worth, and on the inside our desperate hearts cry, “Am I beautiful? Am I lovely?” We long for someone to tell us that, to show us that. No, actually, we crave this. Why? Because God designed us with this feature and it is a void that only He alone can fill. Once He does, and we come to experience this from God, He blossoms us into a vibrant lily.
Whenever I obsess over a verse like this and pick it apart I tend to research all the details of it, just because that’s the way God made me. In doing so, I found some neat information about lilies that I would like to share with you.
- “The Lily flower symbolizes purity and refined beauty.”
- “They are magnificent flowers that command attention wherever they are planted.”
- “Lilies can grow up to 6 feet tall.”
Lilies are beautiful on their own, but there’s something about the thorns that hold value as well in this verse and the visual it creates. Sometimes, the thorns are necessary to see the true beauty of a lily. If a lily is among other lilies, we may not see the great value that it holds. Sure, we can admire the collection, but not the individual. Yet, a lily among thorns shouts beauty. It is unique. It has survived, and it will thrive. It magnificently blossoms from the thorns victoriously, and doesn’t become weighed down by them. Times of adversity and trial do not crush the lily-they add to its beauty. I think that’s what God does with us, and we come out more beautiful and strong and lovelier than ever as a result of these times.
Praying these words from God bless you today, dear lily!