“Oh, how can I give you up, Israel? How can I let you go? … My heart is torn within Me, and My compassion overflows.” Hosea 11:8
Today we finished reading the book of Hosea, a book about the fierce love and jealousy of a Creator God. He is a God who longs for YOU with the ferocity of a bear who has had her cubs taken away. (Hosea 13:8)
I recently got to experience a taste of the jealousy of God, it is an AMAZING thing… and I’m pretty sure I didn’t get to experience even a full ounce of it. I was considering staying late at work instead of coming home to do my devotions and writing before the kids got home from school. His words were firm, few, simple, and undeniable;
“Don’t. You. Dare.”
I didn’t stay late.
When I got home I was hit full force with a jealous Heavenly husband who had waited long enough for me to arrive and satisfy His desire for intimacy with me. He read me the riot act! And it was glorious!!! 😀 All this time, I’ve been throwing fits like a spoiled child about having to go to work and missing spending time with Him when all the while never stopping to think about how HE felt about the whole situation. And I love that He took the time to explain it to me.
What I’m doing away from my writing desk is important for my growth and spiritual well being, not to mention helpful for my family finances and social networking. It’s His will for me to be there. But that doesn’t mean that HE isn’t missing me just as much if not more than I’m missing Him! I’d never stopped to think about that, not even for a second. He made it VERY clear that my time at work is important, HOWEVER, so is my time with Him. And that if I am to ever stay after work at the cost of spending alone time with Jesus, well it had BETTER be under HIS orders and not just because I want the extra money or because someone has made me feel guilty for not staying and I was too spineless to tell them, “No.”
God’s authority surpasses that of a store manager, CEO, head of a household, president, king, you name it! His will is for us to submit to the authorities placed over us, but never at the cost of our spiritual growth and intimate time with Him! There are plenty of hours in the day to work and get things done. Everyone has been given the same twenty-four hours to work with – what we do with it is up to us. And like Hosea 10:12 says, “Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love.” When we plant seeds of righteousness by spending time with Jesus – the supplier of our righteousness – we will reap a harvest of love that will overflow and overtake us in a journey that was created just for us.
Our God is a jealous God, He is jealous for YOU. He is jealous for time with you, alone and uninterrupted time where you can get stark naked honest with Him and yourself and come to a new place of awakening and intimacy in your relationship with Him. He wants a relationship with you like you would not believe. He longs for you like a stumbling wanderer longs for a drink of water in the blistering desert sun. And He doesn’t want you for your body, or your abilities. He doesn’t want you for your title or your paycheck. He simply wants YOU. He wants to touch that person you are deep down inside that is weak and frail and raw. He wants to coax that person out from the shadows and rub healing balm on the spirit of your ailments. He wants to strip away the hurt and the pain and bring you to a higher high than you’ve ever achieved on your own. He wants YOU, naked and unashamed of your nakedness. He is Creator God; He created that nakedness without shame. He created that weakness in you that’s in need of His strength to complete you. You’ll never find anyone who will love you the way that He does. His heart is torn over your absence from His presence, yet He would never force you to come to Him. He is, after all, a gentleman. He is soft and understanding; slow to anger and quick to forgive. And abounding in love for Y.O.U.! He has not, and He will not ever let you go because He can’t.
He ADORES you!