Saturday, July 31, 2010

post 4

After reading Hosea 3, I was so overcome with "Why?! Why do you love like this, God?  How can you look at the unfaithful, the betrayers, the liars and take us for yourself?"  And then I came to Hosea 11.  I think I've read this everyday for the last month.  Hosea 11 has been life-changing.  I love Hosea 11.

"When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son.

The more they were called,
the more they went away;
they kept sacrificing to the false gods
and burning offerings to idols.

Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk;
I took them up by their arms,
but they did not know that I healed them.

I led them with cords of kindness,
with the bands of love,
and I became to them as one who eases the yoke on their jaws,
and I bent down to them and fed them.

My people are bent on turning away from me...

How can I give you up, O Ephraim?
How can I hand you over, O Israel?

My heart recoils within me;
my compassion grows warm and tender.
I will not execute my burning anger;
I will not again destroy you;
for I am God and not a man,
the Holy One in your midst,
and I will not come in wrath."

He's loved us from the beginning.  He considers us His children.  Oh the work He does for us!  "I loved, I called, I taught, I took, I healed, I led, I eased, I bent down, I fed!"  And our response?  We ignorantly and also defiantly run away.  We don't realize all He does, but we also see His authority and bolt.

Then the heart of God speaks.  "How can I give you up, my child?  Your sin against me burns inside me, but my compassion only grows for you.  You are bent on running?  Well, I am bent on loving.  I love you. I will not come in wrath, I will come in love."

Why? Why does He love like this?  Because He is God, not man. 
Men don't love like He loves.  Humans love selfishly.  The Holy One loves selflessly.  
What a privilege to be the receiver of His love.  
What an honor to be carried on His heart.  
What a treasure to be considered His child.
What joy to be held up and fed by Him.

I can't wait to see His face and thank Him for His love.  "Oh, how He loves us"

1 comment:

  1. This, I love. Thank you so much for sharing. I have been meaning to read Hosea for the longest time and I think God has used you to spur me on to just that. Isn't it amazing that the awesome God of the universe grows "warm and tender" to us? To me?