We have reached the end of our Love Above All Else series. I want to talk about Hosea.
In Hosea, Gomer had a number of issues. One of them was accepting real love. Hosea, a prophet and Gomer’s husband, loved her so much. He loved her unconditionally. Even when she left him to go chase after her own demons. Speculation of Gomer was that she was a prostitute because the Bible, in Hosea chapter one, labels her as “a woman of promiscuity” but that didn’t stop God from telling Hosea to marry her and that didn’t stop Hosea from loving her. The book of Hosea is not just the first draft of The Notebook. It also tells of the love of God the Father.
What We Can Learn From Hosea
The Lord’s message through Hosea to the people of Israel was very simple. Stop with the promiscuity and the idolatry. Return to a God with humility and faithfulness. You see the love that Hosea had for his wife Gomer is very similar to the love God has for us. It’s an unconditional love.
“He forbears, endures, forgives, and shows mercy. It’s not because we are good; it is because He is God.” – Jennifer Rothschild
So, we are called to be like Christ, to be like God. That entails loving people unconditionally and living loved. We are ALL Gomer and we are ALL Israel. Isaiah 43 says to not dwell on the past. We all mess up. Loving another person means not holding their mess-ups to their face. You wouldn’t want someone doing that to you, now, would you?
You love others the best when you believe that God loves you
I implied at the beginning of this, that there was no fear in love. That is because there isn’t. John Piper once wrote that perfect love casts out fear. He said that God’s abiding in us and love being perfected in us. “In other words,” he says, “perfected love refers to God’s love in us coming to completion or coming into action as we love each other.” Without God’s love and God in us — without God — we cannot truly love each other.
As I said, you cannot love God and hate His people. It doesn’t work like that. To love God is to love His creation, all of His creation. That very love, as Piper puts it, “is perfected not when it is sinlessly flawless, but when it passes from talk to walk.”
Love God, love others. You will be right with Him. God calls us to share with everyone. Share with everyone the love God has given you. Let them see the light of Jesus through you. We all have failed and a lot of the time we want to say they did this and they did that. Often we are just afraid to show someone who hurt us, love. Love can take over fear. Listen to this; once you realize how dearly loved you actually are you can garner the strength to fight fear. Love is a living word we are to become. Once you realize how deeply loved you are, you can live loved. With love, you can discover the courage to move out of your comfort zone and pursue your dreams. The truth is that our mistakes don’t limit us. Only our fears do.
So, love, above all else. Keep trekking on.