by Adam Reiss
We often think obedience is a burden. There’s what we want to do THEN what we are told. We have our life separated into neat sections and subheadings; some containing desires; some our responsibility to God. Love sometimes includes a process of turning away and returning before we realize how intricately obedience to God and our desires interweave. The beauty in Hosea is God’s constant drive to get us back.
As Hosea’s wife was going elsewhere for something she could have purely gotten from him, so the Israelites strayed from the original Source. Hosea didn’t just forgive her, though. She didn’t write him a nice little note that got him to accept her back; he found her in prostitution and BOUGHT her back. His love for her was stronger than propriety and social convention.
With God, repentance is perfect and everlasting. As many times as we fall away, He is there to take us back. This is of course not to give us permission to sin but to realize the importance of obedience. It gives us a chance to see the beauty which God’s commands pour into our lives in our own time and in full understanding. We fall away and stumble and God does not wait for us to beg. He actively seeks us.
The natural metaphors in the last chapter are beautiful. God declares the abundance he has for those who obey him using the imagery of other botanical objects made by His hands. The trees he mentions are all so beautifully displayed in the open air, the breeze, and the sun while being perfectly rooted exactly where they need to be. In much the same way, God invites us to be rooted in Him.
Today’s Reading: Hosea 9-14
This Weekend: Join us at The VINE at 9:15 AM on Sunday in the Chapel as Stacy Sanford brings us thoughts and a challenging word from Hosea.