Solomon was such a gentleman. Whether or not he felt any attack on his pride or had disappointment from his rejection a couple readings ago, you’d never know it. He is so delighted to be back in Shulamith’s presence. He is tender and adoring, just like on their wedding night.
You may also notice he is using very similar images to tell her of her beauty. We’ve heard these before. To me, that sends the message that he loves her like the first day, despite any “problem” they have had. Did you notice what he didn’t say? He didn’t use the more sensual language. Why? In gentlemanly fashion, he didn’t want her to think the only reason he was being nice was to get in her good graces so he could jump back in the sack with her. To put it bluntly! Too many times, the male motivation comes through in their words and body language. Solomon gives a good example of NOT doing that. It will be much more effective in the reconciliation process.
He does add some interesting language about all the other women he could have had. You may know that Solomon was known for his many women; he would have inherited his father’s harem if nothing else by this time. Yet Solomon assures Shulamith that she is treasured. “I would still choose my dove, my perfect one.” These other women were also in awe of her, and that can speak volumes for one’s confidence.
Shulamith had gone down to the garden where she assumed her man would be. The references in this poetry to spring are beautiful as she remembers how their romance bloomed in springtime. “Before I realized it, my strong desires had taken me to the chariot of a noble man.” Solomon was also known for his many chariots. However, to me, this chariot was the protective arms of her true love.
What do we see here that we can take away into our own relationships? Unselfish love, for one. Women want to be led and feel protected, and Solomon was showing strength and tenderness in his leadership. Men want to be adored and respected. Each partner should always take responsibility for their own behavior and never blame the other. Lots of good stuff.
Let’s pray … Lord, make me a better spouse and friend. Help me to be forgiving of both myself and my mate when problems arise. Thank you that you love us not matter what and give us such a good model to follow. In Jesus’ name. Amen.