Dear Beloved One,
Today I was looking and searching for a topic to write about and I came across something that struck me or more like convicted me. I narrowed my choice to two topics. During this mental “tug-o-war” God directed me to Hosea. I will say that I didn’t want to read it because I was so hyped up on “exploring purpose” and picking out “what not to do when given divine instructions” that I almost missed one of the best lessons God had to teach me .
In Hosea chapter 1, it tells of a prophet who was instructed by God to marry and have children by a prostitute, Gomer (Hosea 1:2). This act was to demonstrate to Israel how their worship of other gods, specifically Baal, was seen as unfaithfulness to God. Chapter two was the real kicker for me. At the beginning, God brings charges against Israel explaining and providing proof of their unfaithfulness and the consequences they were about to suffer for their actions. My eyes fell upon verse 13 and the interior of my heart was exposed. It says
“I will punish her for the days she burned incense to the Baals;
She decked herself with rings and jewelry,
And went after her lovers,
But me she forgot,
declares the Lord”
This means they did everything for their other gods to please them but when it came to the Lord He became an afterthought . They put all they had into these “sideline affairs” with these other gods and they received nothing in return. Although there were limited results, they continued to pursue those things that did nothing to help them. The line that says “But me she forgot” made me realize that I was/am Israel and I felt ashamed. At that moment, I realized how God feels when we as his people put things in front of Him. I imagine how he feels when we in our present day build things up in our lives to be small gods. How do you know they are small gods? My way of knowing they are small gods is by reviewing my priorities. What things am I willing to do to get the things I want? How much of my schedule am I willing to rearrange to be with someone? How far am I willing to go to impress someone? The time that I spend pursuing happiness is the time that I could spend with my God.
The guilt did not stop there because in the next verse , it begins to tell of how the Lord was going to restore Israel in the future. What, is He serious! After all of the things that Israel has done! Yep He says “Therefore I am going to allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her. 15 There I will give her back her vineyards and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope.” Even in discipline God is telling of how He will win Israel’s heart.
When I finished reading all I could hear is when will you love God like these things that you want. There is nothing wrong with praying for things but gosh when will we pray “Lord I want to get to know you. I want to love you like I first loved you. I want to love you so much that the things that I prayed for are the extra perks and not the main reason for me talking to you” . We want things so much that we forget the source and that we have a relationship with Him that tops all relationships and things. My sacred time with my Lord should not be just about the things that I think I need or want . My first priority should be to my Lord and Savior. I have been overlooking my Lord as my first, my last, my everything.
I used to say that God was in a one-sided relationship with people .We ignore Him , we pump our fist at Him ,we use His name in vain , we don’t like to acknowledge Him in front of people, we use and abuse Him and we just flat out call Him a liar. If our friend was in a relationship like this we would say divorce, breakup , leave that loser you’re worth so much more. But God says no, I love them ,I’ll do whatever it takes to see them at the end . If it takes a little discipline, I’ll do it. If it takes staying my hand this time, I’ll do it! If it takes me leaving royalty, I’ll do it! If it takes me coming into an environment that is hostile towards me , I’ll do it! If it takes me being marched from judgment hall to Judgment hall, I’ll do it ! If it takes me being beaten , I’ll do it, If it takes me being crucified , I’ll do it ! If it takes me being put in a barred tomb, I’ll do it! If it takes me going to Hell to set the captives free, I’ll do it! If it takes me using the power to raise myself from the dead , I’ll do it ! If it takes me ascending back to Heaven to sit on the right hand of God then , I’ll do it ! So my prayer in response to HIS unwavering dedication has become:
“Lord I really want to know you. Lord I really love you. You are my beginning, my middle and end. I know Father that I don’t do everything right but I am grateful for your grace and mercy . You Father are an awesome God. You are a God in which no one can compare. A God that is well worth and well fitted for my praise and the praise of every living thing . You put the sun in the sky for the day and the moon at night. You are so big and you care so much for little me. Who am I that you are mindful of me? Who am I that you would send your son to die on the cross for me and in turn make me an heir to the kingdom. You have fashioned me and given me your image. And for that, I am grateful, honored to call you My God. I am honored to be given a chance to glorify your name. You God are the one true and living God that will remain forevermore”
Now what will you do???????????
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. – Matthew 6: 33-KJV
And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. –Deuteronomy 6:5-KJV