It’s Not a Fairy Tale

 
I can find Divine Romance in every fairy tale. I don’t think it’s hard to find in anything. Women love romance, but it was created by a Male.  The greatest romance ever written was breathed by God–it’s His love affair for us, penned by some of His chosen authors.
 

I love the idea of choice. I chose my husband. No one forced me to marry him. When I read about arranged marriages or women handed over as prizes, something inside me stirs like cold lumpy soup that didn’t turn out right. (not borscht, but that’s gross too)

Today, let’s take a look into a passage you may have read a million times. I know I have. I’ve skimmed it and moved on to things I understand. Do you do that? Skip over what seems confusing, dry, or uninteresting to move on to what you do understand and have read dozens of times. It makes you feel connected because you “get it.” But it doesn’t grow you. Not at all.

Find a passage that’s hard. Dry. Uninteresting. Then ask questions. Especially you writers! Ask why? How? Then do the research and find out! God loves a treasure hunter. He’ll help the words come to life on the page. Let’s bring life to a seemingly lifeless and unimportant passage. By the way, nothing is in the Bible by chance.  Just like in your own novels, make every word count. Set the background. Use the words to pace the story along. Make the words lyrical. The reader should hum along to the tune you’ve written. Take a lesson from the Bible!

Our story picks up in Joshua 15: 16-19 & Judges 1:12-15. It doesn’t take a huge portion of words to bring out a story. Less is more.

Backstory: The children of Israel are still fighting for their land. Much of it has been conquered, but not all of it. Joshua has died. There is no direct leader at this point. (See how I didn’t vomit a ton of backstory at the beginning.)

Caleb (you remember Caleb…he took his mountain in another blog post) says, “Whoever attacks Kirjath Sepher and takes it, to him I will give my daughter Achsah as his wife.”

Now let’s stop there. The lumpy soup is back. Geez, Caleb, couldn’t you offer up a few ounces of silver? Your daughter? Really? Really, Caleb?

Get out your spoon and get ready to stir the cold lumpy mess because it’s about to warm up into something delicious!

Looks are deceiving. Was Caleb really offering up his daughter as a thoughtless prize or was he looking for a noble man who could honor and protect her after he was gone? The father says, “Who will go up? Who will fight for this woman? Death is a possibility. Exhaustion a certainty.”

 

Achsah in Hebrew means “anklet, or ankle bracelet.” Names are a big deal in the Bible. When I think of an anklet, I see a dainty jewel. Precious.  Who will fight for his dainty precious jewel? He won’t be around forever. Remember, Caleb was a man of God. One of two spies willing to fight. One of two that entered into the Promised Land.

In verse 13, Othniel- the son of Kenaz (Caleb’s younger brother and we’re not going there, but those were the times, my friend…those were the times) took it. Othniel, also of the tribe of Judah. His name meaning…lion of God.

 

Let’s think about him a minute. He obviously has been around long enough that he knows Achsah. Maybe he’s seen her sitting among the young women. He’s been waiting for the right opportunity to make her his bride.

 Her delicateness interests him–enough he’s willing to take Kirjath Sepher, which means city of letters. We’re talking about a royal Canaanite city. Educated. A place located in the mountains. (now mountains of Judah west of Hebron)

When he comes back, victorious, Achsah comes to him and in verse 14 she moves him to request something of her father. The word in NKJV is “urge” but in KJV it’s “moved” and in Hebrew that word is “cuwth” and it means “incite, allure, instigate or entice.”
 
 
 Her father has raised her to love the Promised Land. Her inheritance. Imagine as she surveys the southern half–her half, how dry it is. She moves her husband– allures him with her beauty, her knowledge, and maybe even her heart for their inheritance– to ask her father for springs of water to quench the parched land.
 
Her father not only grants the upper springs, but the lower. He’s generous…abundant…lavish. Now she and her husband, who has fought honorably for her hand, can live…happily ever after.
 
It gets better. Better than happily ever after? Well, yeah, don’t you want your happily ever after? Did you not see the subtle foreshadowing? Every great book has it.
 
It begins with a dry parched land–a land barren from sin–and a Father who wants to make sure His dainty jewel, His ankle bracelet, is taken care of. A Father who is generous…abundant…lavish.
 
“Who will go up the mountain and fight for her?”
 
Someone had their eye on the lovely jewel.  “I will go.” Heaven hushed, only the swoosh of the seraphim wings continued to sound as they cried, “holy, holy, holy…”
 
An angel came and collected the royal robes and crown. And then in the still of the night, a baby’s cries could be heard echoing.
 

 

 
A face like flint

 

He grew in favor and wisdom, this Man and God…this Lion of Judah. 
 
He saw the prize and it was His joy to endure the battle for her hand in marriage.
 
He climbed a steep hill one that may have felt like a mountain…wounded, bleeding, flesh ripped, eyes swollen, exhaustion beating Him down…but He fought.
 
And He won.
 
 
 
It’s not a fairytale.
 We can live happily ever after…full of refreshing waters that quench a dry and parched soul. Our Father wants to give it to us. Water that will never run dry.
 
  “The royal daughter is all glorious within the palace;
         Her clothing is woven with gold.
  She shall be brought to the King in robes of many colors;
         The virgins, her companions who follow her, shall be brought to You.
  With gladness and rejoicing they shall be brought;
         They shall enter the King’s palace.”
Psalm 45: 13-15
 
What passage do you find uninteresting or confusing but would love to pull out treasure?

5 thoughts on “It’s Not a Fairy Tale

  1. I love how you told this story and described it:) I love the encouragement that we can live happily ever after:)

     
     
  2. Now you know I cried! Of course, I cry at pretty much anything concerning love…because it moves me! As far as romance…now that's my kind of loving! Loved it!

     
     
  3. Beautiful. I love your writing style.

     
     
  4. Jessica, I've been reading your posts for a while now. They are just so inspiring. Your writing is beautiful, a true gift from God. I just finished the story of Joseph again…an awesome tale of love and forgiveness!

     
     
  5. Thanks everyone for your comments!
    Terri: I think the world needs to know we truly can have the happily ever after!

    Heather: Crybaby! 😉 I will never forget your statement, "I just love love." ha!

    Janalyn: I'm so glad you dropped by! Thanks for your kind words.

    Loree: I love the story of Joseph. I cry every time I watch the animated movie, when he weeps over his brothers. I'm tearing up now! Thanks for your encouragement. BTW, I love that picture of you and your hubby at Christmas in your historical clothing. It was beautiful. I bet you felt like you really were back in time! Wow!

     
     

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