What comes to mind when you think “Bride of Christ”? For me, I think of Jesus wooing me constantly into this eternal, wonderful, passionate, faithful, pure, fulfilling relationship with Him. He is my Beloved and I am His. When the troubles and triumphs of the world come and go with the seasons, knowing whose I am is a grounding encouragement. Knowing He is mine gives me strength to swim upstream when it is a difficult day to be different or to say “Yes” or “No” to what He would have me choose. He is coming for me and until then, I wait upon Him.
There’s an element of passivity in my perspective of being the “Bride of Christ.” This was challenged when I attended a talk last Thursday, at the event of the same name hosted by Artists In Touch and Media Pillar of the Philippines, where Rev. Ed de Guzman presented some thought- provoking questions…
Are you the bride of Christ? Is the church automatically the Bride? Are all the Church the Bride? How can Men be the Bride of Christ?
Here are some of the basic qualities of the Bride of Christ Pastor Ed talked about:
- The bride will be presented as a pure virgin (2Cor 11:2) [This doesn’t refer literally to the person who hasn’t experienced sexual relations but having purity of heart.
- The bride will be known for her righteousness or righteous acts (Rev 19:5-8).
- Holy, cleanse and washed by the Word of God, a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle (Eph 5:25-27)
- The bride of Christ will have the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. (Eph 4:13)
- The bride will have sincere and pure devotion to Christ. (2Cor 11:3)
You are the same person but as the Bride of Christ, you have a different mindset, appearance, behavior, action, priority, focus aligned with Christ.
If you move from being woman or girlfriend to now about-to-be-married bride of Christ, there is Transformation, Change, Radiance, and Glory found in The Bride not found in the ordinary woman.
The end times calls for the Wedding of the Lamb and His Bride— and He is not picking up the unprepared, un-attired, unadorned fiancee.
Can men be the Bride of Christ? Yes…
From a passive bride that awaits her Bridegroom (Christ) this teaching reminds me of Ephesians 1:18-19:
18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.
Dear Lord, I want to be Your true bride. In what ways do You want to transform my mind and heart to be Your ready bride? What things in my life need to change in order to truly manifest my alignment to You? What do You want me to stop doing? What do you want me to keep on doing? What do You want me to start doing? Am I fearing people? I shouldn’t. Please give me Your wisdom and discernment and change my character to be more like You. Help me to have the reverent fear of You and do in Your strength the things You want me to do in Jesus’s name amen.
Behind the scenes…
After setting up the table for the cupcakes,
I was drenched in sweat, so I decided to go home to change before coming back as a guest. Finally before 6pm, I made it past the red carpet to the registration booth of Teatrino, Promenade, Greenhills. I asked the kind ladies at the desk if they had any paper; they didn’t. But a young lady from behind with angelic beauty stood up and motioned that she would get me a page out of her own notebook. She started snipping away and ended up giving me a few pages! It turns out she is Max Collins. And here is her boyfriend, Pancho Magno:
Julianne Tarroja led a wonderful, moving worship time. To have worship next to Kuh Ledesma, Carla Martinez, near Isabella Gonzalez and hear their voices blend is heavenly, btw.
Kuh singing this song (Who Am I?) brought tears to my eyes:
Rhoze Rivera did an interpretative dance:
Rev. Ed de Guzman gave his message: Get ready, Bride!