They had reached the end of their rope.
Steeped in self.
Stuck to stone and stubble.
Deep in depravity.
They stumbled in sin and set nets for others.
Held hostage by habits.
With hearts hardened by a spirit of harlotry.
Without knowledge of God.
And He was about to let them go.
When they go with their flocks and herds to seek the Lord, they will not find him; he has withdrawn himself from them. ~Hosea 5:6 (NIV)
It’s hard to think that God would withdraw.
Or that I couldn’t find Him.
I think sometimes my husband would like to withdraw from me. Especially when I don’t eat. Hunger takes the wheel and drives my behavior.
It’s not pretty.
Sometimes he just needs to get some food in me.
I loved Newhart, that show that revolved around the Vermont inn. I think about Stephanie, their young spoiled housekeeper. So caught up in self.
“Sorry, sorry, sorry,” she’d sing.
Like a child who’s only sorry because they’ve been caught or because of the discipline they face.
No heart in it.
Which is what God wants, of course.
For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings. ~Hosea 6:6 (NIV)
And sometimes we sacrifice the sense of His presence.
Until nothing else satisfies, and we are so famished we MUST eat.
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. ~Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV)
Letting go of self.
To seek Him only.
To feed on Him only.
To know Him only.
It’s worth the sacrifice.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. ~1 Peter 2:9
Linking to Peter Pollock’s One Word Carnival on Sacrifice.