#Awkward: Hosea’s Marriage by Jay Vetter
There comes a time in everyone’s life when, if they are truly following God, they will feel the call to do something that sounds like a really bad idea, and in most cases, if God wasn’t telling them to do it, it would end poorly. Knowing the difference between a bad idea and God’s calling can be challenging, but when people recognize God’s calling and respond with faith, He does some incredible things.
For Hosea, a prophet in the Old Testament, his moment came when God told him to marry an adulterous woman. She was a prostitute before Hosea married her, and if that’s not bad enough, she wasn’t close to remaining faithful afterwards. At one point, Hosea literally had to go search for her and buy her back from some other guy! If that’s not awkward, I don’t know what is.
I can’t help but ask, why? Why would God have this man marry a woman that was so prone to unfaithfulness? Hosea was a man of God. Shouldn’t God bless him with a faithful and respectable wife? Shouldn’t there be a reward for being faithful to God? At first glance this may seem to be the case but if we look closer we see Hosea was being blessed. He was blessed because he was chosen by God in that moment in history to be a demonstration of God’s overwhelming love for His people.
You see, it turns out that God’s favorite illustration of His love for us is marriage, and in Hosea’s case, God wanted to demonstrate his faithfulness despite our pattern of leaving him for other things. The nation of Israel, like us today, had an awful habit of turning away from God, running back to Him, and then leaving again. So often, things in our lives distract us, whether they are good, bad, or ordinary, we have a tendency to turn our attention away from God. When things are good we say, “I don’t need God I can do this on my own.” When things are bad, we ask, “where is God, how could He let this happen?” And when things are ordinary, we simply don’t say anything and ignore Him all together.
However, God is madly in love with us and despite our fickle hearts that run away at the first sight of something we think might be better, He is faithful to us. He has committed Himself to His bride, the Church, and longs for us to be faithful in return. No matter how many times we fail, He is by our side asking us to come back to Him. He doesn’t force Himself on us, He simply tells us He loves us and asks us to love Him in return. Our pain isn’t caused by Him leaving us, He would never do that; rather it is caused by us leaving Him.
So if you find yourself wondering where God is, just turn around. He is following after you trying to win back your heart. If you feel like you don’t deserve His love, you’re right, you don’t, but He doesn’t care. Just like Hosea ran after his adulterous wife and brought her back from the arms of another man, Jesus ran after us to bring us back from our sin so that we can experience His love and have an intimate relationship with Him. Nothing you ever do can make God give up on you, and He is always hoping to hear you say, “I want to come home.”