Monday, April 25, 2016

My Baali, My Ishi: A Look Back At My First Love

**Originally written as a contributing essay for anthology "Super Singles Activate! Testimonies to Inspire and Uplift the Single Woman" in March, 2010.**

It was in my wilderness that God asked me to marry Him. I am not of the Catholic faith, so becoming a nun was not an option. Besides, after being celibate for two years already, I knew that the vow of a nun was not one that I was willing to take for a lifetime. What did God want from me then? And how could I become betrothed to the Creator of all things?

The revelation of God's call on my life began with a very simple, but profound scripture - Hosea 2:16. The scripture reads, " 'And it shall be, in that day,' says the Lord, 'That you will call Me "My Husband (Ishi)," And no longer call Me "My Master (Baali)"...". (NKJV) The remarkable thing is that this call came to me in a time when I was arguably at the lowest point I had ever been in my life. I was still healing from a broken marriage and subsequent divorce; I was bankrupt, both financially and emotionally; I had only a few worldly possessions left. My daughter, 13 at the time, served as my only source of happiness.

Yet, here was God, whom I had accepted into my life as a child, in the person of Jesus Christ, asking me to reach through all of the darkness in my life and find Him in that darkness. I did not know where to start so I prayed for help. It was in prayer that the awesomeness of God's request began to surround me and seep into my spirit. Almighty God wanted an intimate relationship with me! He was calling me closer and deeper into His will. He was ready to open my spiritual eyes to the wonder of His mysteries so that I could begin to know Him and not just about Him.

How mind-blowing it is that the perfect Creator would take notice of this broken, flawed, and wounded person and, with all my imperfections, bid me come closer to His throne. At first, I was consumed by how unworthy I actually was (and still am) of such an honor. Yet, my Lord, my 'Baali', spoke His eternal love and mercy to my spirit, everyday, until my esteem and my confidence were restored through Him. Every bird sang for me; every breeze blew for me; the warmth of the sun was just for me. He had always seen my true worth even though I had let the clouds of my circumstances overshadow the gift of His light in my life.

Today, I am still learning to walk in intimacy with Christ, yet He remains patient, loving, and merciful through it all. His Spirit teaches me that I am Esther, having access to my King and all that He possesses. He whispers to me that I am Mary Magdalene, walking closely with Him and ministering to the needs of His kingdom. He speaks to my spirit that I am Mary, mother of Christ, whom He will use to birth forth precious seeds of truth, wisdom, and love. Yet, the sweet rapture of this intimacy is not just reserved for me.

Jesus stands waiting for all who will come to Him and in faith, will take a vow of marriage: "Yes, Lord, I will take you as my 'Ishi', to have for eternity and to hold dear to my heart, loving, honoring, and obeying you, through seasons of prosperity as well as seasons of sowing, until my human death returns my soul to you to dwell with you forever. Amen.

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