By Christy Cox
“Therefore, behold, I will allure her, will bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfort to her. I will give her her vineyards from there, and the Valley of Achor as a door of hope; She shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, as in the day when she came up from the land of Egypt.
“And it shall be, in that day,” says the Lord, “That you will call Me ‘My Husband,’ ‘And no longer call Me ‘My Master’…
“I will betroth you to Me forever; Yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and justice, In lovingkindness and mercy; I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness, and you shall know the Lord.
(Hosea 2:14-16, 19-20)
Father, Your great love for us is so deep and You wish for us to experience that love. You draw us and allure us, Your daughters towards You. And how do You do it? “Behold, I will allure her, will bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfort to her.” Strangely, by bringing us into the wilderness. A place of sorrow, pain and suffering; and as we cry out in our anguish in that place – You also promise to speak comfort and hope to us. Right there in our darkest moments, You reveal Yourself.
You desire for us to know You and Your great love for us. Lord help us to remember our joy of salvation and the praise we offered to You freely when we were taken from our Egypt. Help us remember when we were lost without the hope of heaven and evil in Your sight. Remind us of the songs of joy we sang about when You reached down from Heaven and freed us.
How many times in our hearts do we only view You as ‘My Master’? Obeying because we must, and only half-heartedly to the God who purchased us like Hosea did for Gomer. Jesus, You righteously and wonderfully purchased us and have all the right to rule us. Yet obligatory service has never been what You seek from us. That’s not Your heart. Your heart is that we would love You as we would love a husband we adore. You long and desire our tender affection and love towards You for all of eternity.
And it is through the wilderness that You have brought into our own lives, that we shall truly know this love. For it is when we are stripped of everything that we can finally see You, our God pursuing us in love, showing us righteousness and justice in lovingkindness and mercy continually. Though there are many days we in our weakness doubt and are unfaithful to You Lord, You shall be faithful to us forever. And this will be our hope in dark moments - “I will betroth you to Me forever.”
Prayer - Thank you Lord for loving us this much. In faith, we thank You for this wilderness and for constantly moving in our lives to show us Yourself, Your love and how to truly love You. Help us surrender to Your will, give us the grace to endure and to seek Your face in the midst of our wildernesses, so that we too shall know the Lord.