Reading: Hosea 11:1-11
When you think about God do you think about the passion with which he loves you? What I love about so much about the Old Testament is the passion of God. It is a fine line to describe God as passionate because our understanding of emotions are so limited. The British stoic personality perhaps loses for us the strength of emotion. When you hear this passage do you feel the passion of God?
God deeply loves his people Israel with a love that is equal to a mother and her unborn child, to a parent and their child, the first throws of passionate love in the early stages of a relationship where a couple cant get enough of each. God is a lover he loves his people and that is why he gets so frustrated with them. They cant commit to him and he is a jealous God. He hates the fact that they go looking elsewhere for the love he has so much to give. It makes him angry.
Think of any soap opera the main story lines are to do with people and relationships, and the breakdown of them. The Old Testament is the soap opera of Israel and God.
Do you believe that God loves his people as passionately today? Do you know his deep love for you, the kind that makes butterflies in your tummy when you spend time focussed on him like a date? Do you know his love for you like a friend who listens when the world around you is crazy? Do you know his love for you like a shining knight who races into battle to defend your honour?
Does your love for him make you want to spend more and more time with him? Or are you like the Israelites looking for love in all the wrong places? I never realised how much God loves until recently when I started to explore the concept of love and passion. I read this passage and I feel love.
The thing about love is that it strengthens us and makes us confident. It can also cause us to wonder what we ever did to deserve it. Love that takes our breath away and catches us unawares excites us and scares us almost simultaneously. And when God is our lover so it should because he is the most high holy God. He has the whole of creation at his fingertips, can shower us in gifts and also has the singular right to reign us in. Gods love is so abounding that he gave us Jesus Christ as our example, he gave us the Holy Spirit to connect us eternally with him. Why do we doubt his love?
Let us come before God with fear and trembling, yet confident in his love for us that we will always be made welcome.